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'Smile for the future' Lausanne environment activists call for action on global warming

Greta Thunberg with other climate marchers in Lausanne

Greta Thunberg joined a climate demonstration in Lausanne bringing the "Smile for Future" gathering to an end.

(Keystone)

An international summit of young climate activists, who marched through the streets of Lausanne, has called for concrete measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The participants meeting in the western Swiss city of Lausanne on Friday adopted a declaration reaffirming their common goal of tackling climate change, saying they shared the same values and concerns despite their different backgrounds.

“The climate crisis knows no borders, and nor do we. Together we will change this world and make it a better place. For us and for all the generations after us,” the participants said in a seven-page declarationexternal link.

The document was approved after a week of discussions and workshops, attended by about 400 people from 38 countries, including Swedish climate activist, Greta Thunberg.

The three main demands include "climate justice", increased awareness of the results of scientific research on climate change as well as keeping global warming limited to 1.5 degrees Celsius compared with pre-industrial levels.

The summit criticises politicians around the world for ignoring the danger of human extinction. 

The activists warn that the future of mankind will be determined by what happens in the next few months and years.

"But we have a choice," they say.

A number of public events have been planned for the United Nations climate youthexternal link summit in New York in September.

Some 2,500 people joined a march on Friday afternoon following the week-long ‘Smile for Future’ gathering at the University of Lausanne. They marched from the town's main railway station to the shores of Lake Geneva, carrying and chanting slogans such as "We are unstoppable, another world is possible". An evening of festivities by the lake will bring the gathering to an end. 

Summit headliner Thunberg was at the railway station for the start of the march but had to leave to pursue her campaign for the environment. She is expected in New York on September 23 for the UN climate summit and is travelling to the US by boat. 

nouvo Smile for future

Hundreds of young climate activists are brainstorming in Lausanne at the SMILE for future climate summit, attended by Greta Thunberg as well.

swissinfo.ch with Keystone-SDA/ug, jc

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