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San Diego students rally against climate change

San Diego County high school students took part in a Global Day of Climate Strikes at about a dozen schools around the region on Friday.

Some events happened at the beginning of the school day, some during the day, and others are planned for next week.

At Patrick Henry High School in San Diego, students streamed out of class at noon and rallied at the amphitheater on the western edge of campus.


The students ditched the fourth period — with administration approval.

“We all have the ability to walk out of our fourth period. Come here. Advocate for climate action. And be able to use our able-bodiedness to speak up for what we believe in,” junior Kacie Fernandes said.

Fernandes expressed concern about all of the signs that climate change is happening and the planet is feeling it.

“Every year it gets warmer,” Fernandes said. “Every year we have more natural disasters. And I think now people are finally starting to grasp the idea that climate change is real.”

Fernandes worries that the world will become unlivable, and that is one reason she helped organize the rally.


SanDiego350 helped clubs and student leaders put the rallies together.

The young people are hoping to encourage President Joe Biden to do more to slow climate change.

“And they’re coming together in solidarity — demanding that President Biden take climate action and declare a climate emergency,” said Xavier Holmes, of SanDiego350. “And champion climate action at the U.N. summit that’s happening in New York City.”

Organizers said the local student voices would have a much larger reach, because there are events around the United States and across the globe.

“It’s all about creating community,” Holmes said. “So, while we have that locally in San Diego, it’s also about making an effort in other places in the U.S., other places around the world. This is a human species issue. So we need to work together on these things.”

The climate strikes are encouraged by a group known as Fridays For Future.

Members are pushing to end reliance on fossil fuels.

They say the carbon-intensive industry runs on greed and exploitation while demanding billions of dollars in subsidies.

Disadvantaged communities, the group argues, endure the worst impacts linked to fossil fuel-driven climate change.