Students in Glasgow have joined activists from across the country in a nationwide protest against climate change.

Around 150 strikers took to George Square to stage their third campaign for action as part of the Youth Strike 4 Climate movement.

Organisers said ‘sizeable events’ took place in major towns and cities across the UK, with students bringing central London to a standstill.

It comes not long after the world’s leading climate scientists warned that “rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes” are needed to combat climate change before it becomes out of control in just over a decade.

Since mid-February, tens of thousands of students have been striking from education and calling for urgent climate action, mobilising the largest ever youth-led climate justice movement in the UK’s history.

Read more: Students campaign worldwide for action on climate change

In London, over 6,000 young people occupied Oxford Circus, with demonstrations also taking place in Brighton, Manchester, Sheffield and Cardiff.

Glasgow’s youth strike was organised by University of Glasgow student Megan Rose. 

Speaking to The Herald, she said: “I think climate change is the biggest issue facing our generation.

“It makes a massive statement having kids sacrificing their education for this climate crisis.

“I want our generation to be involved in our political system, and to believe that they can have an effect on what is happening in our country.”

She added: “It makes me able to sleep okay at night knowing that I’m doing something, even if it’s just organising.”

It is the third Glasgow campaign Megan has organised, with the last one drawing in crowds of over 2000 as part of the global youth strike in March.

Read more: Green call to 'seize power' to tackle climate change

The demonstration came as part of the UK Student Climate Network’s call for a Green New Deal, which seeks to restructure the UK economy to ensure a ‘liveable, healthy environment, planet and future’.

Co-founder of the UK Student Climate Network Anna Taylor said: “Once again young people have proven themselves to be courageous, ambitious and desperate to fight for a liveable future.

"We’ve been called truants, lazy, and apathetic, but thousands across the country have sent out a clear statement - we want action on climate change, and we want it now."

Students as young as six took part in Friday’s protests, and took time out of their Easter holidays to join the demonstration.

Young musicians played ukuleles and guitars to the gathered crowd, and organiser Megan lifted her flute to join an impromptu classical performance.

Siblings Patrick, 10, and Pearl, 12, travelled with their mum to wave their handmade signs.


Little Patrick said that ‘time was running out’ to help save the planet, and showed off his poster depicting a burning Earth.

Fifth year student Dylon, who is sitting her Higher exams in just a few weeks time, says that the planet is ‘too important to ignore’.

She said: “The world is falling apart and it seems like no-one except for us is doing anything about it.

“Exams aren’t going to matter in a few years when the planet is dying.”

When midday struck, protestors joined arms in a traditional ceilidh dance, basking in the slight warmth of the April sun and enjoying the open space.

Student political and environmental activist groups joined in the protests, setting up stalls and handing out leaflets to students and passersby.

Glasgow University branch manager of the Socialist Party Scotland Oisin Duncan said enough isn’t being done in Scotland to combat the climate crisis.

He said: “We would say strikes are the most powerful thing that the northern working class can do.

Read more: Young people unite for a green future.

“The Scottish Government have taken some measures, but I don’t think they’ve gone far enough.

“We think it should be declared a national emergency; as the UN report states, there’s maybe only 11 years until climate change becomes almost irreversible.

He added: “We really are in a tight situation here. We need to start taking action now.”

Scottish Greens co-convener Maggie Chapman hailed those taking part in youth strikes during her party’s Spring Conference last week.

She said: “The concern of the new generation on their planet is truly heartening.

“Our young people are leading the way in challenging the systems and structures of our politics and our economy. 

“We must listen to them. We must take them seriously. We must give them their future."

Students are again gearing up to take part in the second Global Climate Strike in just a few weeks time on May 24.