KY students demand action on global climate change

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FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) — People from more than 150 countries stood together Friday to urge world leaders to act more aggressively to combat climate change.

Students in Frankfort led one of those protests Friday at the state capitol.

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Protesters came out wearing red and black to stand in solidarity with those around the globe holding their own strikes.

“We need climate action now,” says organizer Natalie Dufour. She’s a 16-year-old junior at Franklin County High School.

These students and other protesters want a green new deal, land restoration, environmental justice and a transition to sustainable energy.

“My goal is to reduce the use of fossil fuel to half by 2030 and to completely eliminate the use by 2035 and I also want to have zero carbon emissions by 2050,” says Dufour.

Dufour comes by this honestly. Her mom is an environmental activist.

“Climate change is killing our planet. So many animals are dying because the climate is warming up,” says Dufour.

She was only one student, of dozens the district allowed to be at the strike during school hours.

“If kids need to have their voices heard we’re gonna find a way to make that happen I mean that’s education in action and we have to be able to put our money where our mouth is so to speak,” says Franklin County Schools superintendent Mark Kopp.

Kopp says it wasn’t so much the topic, but the students passion about it that inspired him.

“To them this is a really important issue and they’re letting their voices be heard and I love every second of it. I’m so very proud of them,” says Kopp.

The district even provided transportation to the capitol.

“It’s amazing to be a part of something this big. So many people care about this issue and it shows we can do something big,” says Dufour.

And this, was a big start.

For more information on the global climate strikes, click here.

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Christy Bollinger joined the ABC 36 news team as a reporter in March 2018. Christy comes from a little western Kentucky town called Cadiz. She graduated from Western Kentucky University in May 2017 with degrees in Broadcast Journalism and Criminology. Christy is thrilled to be working at her dream job in her home state. She is passionate about storytelling and you can see her weekdays on ABC 36 News at 5 and 6 p.m. She's covered everything from visits from the sitting president and vice president, to high-profile murder cases. When not chasing stories, Christy loves nothing more than being at the beach and says life is just better with sand between your toes and waves crashing at your feet. She is also a big animal lover. She's a fur momma and her mini-Australian Shepherd, Milly, standard Australian Shepherd, Bennie, and her Maine Coon, Cheeto, are the loves of her life. Christy encourages you to send her any story ideas you may have. Find her on Facebook at Christy Bollinger ABC 36, tweet her @ChristyB_news, or email her at CBollinger@wtvq.com.