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Introduction:

Saturday December 8, 2018, Global March for the Climate in Katowice Poland

This is where the COP24 is hosted (the annual conference of the parties to the UN Convention on Climate Change) in a country that plans to build a mega coal-fired power plant "clean and not-for-profit" (1) (2) and where the venue, Katowice is in the centre of Silesian coal country. Furthermore, the event is "sponsored by the big carbon-related energy companies." (3)

The event's blue and green banners announce: "Changing Together," although assemblies and demonstrations are forbidden and "170 people coming to the UN conference on the climate were refused entry at the border by the Polish authorities (4). Nevertheless more than a thousand people were allowed to parade for the Global March for the Climate, surrounded by an impressive cortege of police officers, one every 10 steps, not counting those in civilian clothes staring intently at you, and the presence of the military.

Plac Wolności (Liberty Plaza) the point of departure of the march, was the site for speaker including Greta Thunberg (5). This fifteen-year old Swedish militant was warmly applauded and set the tone for COP24 where she stressed that the world needed concrete actions. "She is at the origin of a global movement: middle and high school students are playing truant on Friday to demand action against climate change. She had started alone, sitting in front of the Swedish Parliament, with her little cardboard sign saying: "school strike for the climate".


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