Young climate activists in Europe and the US work to sway elections Holly Gillibrand is a few years shy of 18. But on May 23, the day citizens of the United Kingdom cast their ballots in the 2019 European Parliamentary elections, she voted—in a sense. It’s not that she committed voting fraud, or that voting laws have changed—you still need to be 18 in Scotland, where she lives. But for this election, 13-year-old Gillibrand convinced a family member to cast a ballot for the candidate she supported—the one that had promised to take the most active stance on stopping climate breakdown. Her “vote” was part of a larger effort in Europe and Australia to attempt an election-season “climate coup.” Young people have been mobilizing around climate en masse since 2018—the year that anti-gun-violence movement March for Our Lives drew hundreds of thousands of people to Washington, DC, and climate justice group Zero Hour held a youth climate march in 25 cities across the world. It’s also when the political action organization Sunrise Movement launched an effort to get midterm candidates to take a No Fossil Fuel Money Pledge , and perhaps most famously, when 16-year-old Swedish climate activist Greta […]


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