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Traffic light for Future

Inspired by Greta Thunberg’s “School Strike for Climate,” students around the world launched “Fridays for Future” five years ago.

At the time, millions demonstrated for more efficient climate protection policies. In Berlin, more than 100,000 people took to the streets in the fall of 2018. Now, five years later, last Friday, there were 24,000 in Berlin, according to the organizers, and 12,500 according to the police.

Is “Fridays for Future” (FFF) at an end or even superfluous?

Singer Grönemeyer, as a fellow demonstrator in Hamburg, said, “You should be grateful to this generation.” The FFF has achieved a lot. They have managed to make climate protection a global issue. Greta Thunberg has spoken at the UN (“I want to panic you”) and at world climate conferences, she has discussed with Angela Merkel and the Dalai Lama, Trump and Putin have been upset with her. Worldwide, hundreds of thousands were again on the streets.

In Germany, the Federal Constitutional Court has succeeded in having the previous government legally submit the goal of a climate-neutral Germany from 2050 to 2045. There is more heated debate about transportation transformation than there was five years ago. The controversial actions of the “last generation” dominate the headlines.

Climate protests on the streets are still needed. It will be a long time before the world has climate presidents or climate chancellors. We are still a long way from the 1.5 degree target. We finally need a “Traffic Light for Future” in this country.

The climate brings itself to mind daily with fires, hail, water and deaths. Extreme weather will soon become normal. This summer has been the hottest in modern times. The main people affected are the poorest and those not yet born. Half the world is on fire this summer, floods in Libya, 60,000 heat deaths in Europe, even more in Africa, more and more climate refugees.

And most readers of our sunny page know that these catastrophes are only the beginning. The only way to save ourselves is to switch to renewable energies more quickly than we have done so far. We have to start energetically into the solar age.

In this catastrophic situation, the world needs visions for a better future. One of the central tasks for the future is to bring together ecological and social problems, to reconcile ecology and economy and: How does ecology become the more intelligent economy? How do we create an ecosocial market economy via a common good economy?

In Hamburg last Friday, Herbert Grönemeyer sang in front of more than 20,000. In Stockholm, Greta Thunberg demonstrated in front of the poster “People, not profit.” And German activist Luisa Neubauer said in Berlin, “I can live with the fear, the worry, the despair. But what I can’t live with would be the feeling that, looking back, we didn’t give it our all.” That’s how I feel, too.


Franz Alt 2023

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