Sixteen-year-old Mace MacGowan, a Grade 11 Chilliwack secondary student, started a petition asking the City of Chilliwack to create a climate action plan. He, along with other students, will be marching from the Chilliwack Library to city hall on Nov. 29. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Sixteen-year-old Mace MacGowan, a Grade 11 Chilliwack secondary student, started a petition asking the City of Chilliwack to create a climate action plan. He, along with other students, will be marching from the Chilliwack Library to city hall on Nov. 29. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Climate change needs to be addressed at the city level, says student

Students start petition requesting a climate action plan from City of Chilliwack

Helping organize the upcoming Global Climate Strike Nov. 29 in Chilliwack has really lit a spark under 16-year-old Mace MacGowan.

“I have been working non-stop to bring the biggest and best climate action plan to our city,” MacGowan told The Progress.

Climate issues urgently need to be addressed at the city level, the Grade 11 student said, and inaction is putting everyone’s future at risk.

MacGowan is urging people to sign the online petition he created on Nov. 17, asking Chilliwack mayor and council to develop a “climate action plan” to stave off disaster.

“I want a future. My peers want a future. We all want a future,” the grade 11 student wrote in the petition preamble. “I fear for when I have kids, what will life be like for them. If we don’t take action now, it’ll be too late. So please, take action for all of us living in Chilliwack and in the nearby cities.”

The petition included this request:

“So to Mayor Popove, Councillors Westeringh, Mercer, Lum, Knott, Kloot, and Shields, the students and parents of Chilliwack implore you to:

1. Join the growing list of cities and municipalities across B.C. that publicly recognize climate change has reached a crisis point globally;

2. Develop and implement a plan of action to act on this crisis locally

The next global strike on Nov. 29 features a march from the Chilliwack Library starting at 11:30 a.m. to Chilliwack City Hall where speakers will attempt to inspire and educate the crowds starting at noon.

However, there is an existing “City Climate Action” page at www.chilliwack.com that maps out precisely what actions City of Chilliwack is taking on climate change at the community and corporate level, since first deciding to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in a systematic way in 2007.

The community action plan shows steps taken like starting compost collection, fleet greening, to expanding transit and cycling infrastructure, along with treeplanting, and implementing energy retrofits on city facilities.

The petition ‘City of Chilliwack: Don’t let climate change take away our future’ had more than 190 signatures by late Wednesday afternoon.

SEE MORE: Global climate strike comes to Chilliwack

SEE MORE: Students allowed to skip school for climate strikes


@CHWKjourno
jfeinberg@theprogress.com

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Sixteen-year-old Mace MacGowan, a Grade 11 Chilliwack secondary student, started a petition asking the City of Chilliwack to create a climate action plan. He, along with other students, will be marching from the Chilliwack Library to city hall on Nov. 29. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Sixteen-year-old Mace MacGowan, a Grade 11 Chilliwack secondary student, started a petition asking the City of Chilliwack to create a climate action plan. He, along with other students, will be marching from the Chilliwack Library to city hall on Nov. 29. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Sixteen-year-old Mace MacGowan, a Grade 11 Chilliwack secondary student, started a petition asking the City of Chilliwack to create a climate action plan. He, along with other students, will be marching from the Chilliwack Library to city hall on Nov. 29. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)

Sixteen-year-old Mace MacGowan, a Grade 11 Chilliwack secondary student, started a petition asking the City of Chilliwack to create a climate action plan. He, along with other students, will be marching from the Chilliwack Library to city hall on Nov. 29. (Jenna Hauck/ The Progress)