GLASGOW, SCOTLAND — The leaves of Kelvingrove Park are a patchwork of yellow and green, caught between summer and fall, life and death. A stiff wind stirred the boughs above a throng of strikers who gathered there on Friday to send a message to negotiators in the conference rooms at United Nations climate talks a mile (1.6 kilometers) away: The time for promises is over. The era of climate action has to begin.
The scene in Kelvingrove felt a bit like a school reunion as climate strikers from around the world met up, some for the first time in two years. The pandemic forced a movement that was gaining force through mass demonstrations to scramble and organize online. But with the Glasgow talks going and vaccine access spreading—albeit still incredibly unevenly—the strikes are back. Cries of “climate justice” echoed off the city’s buildings as police cleared a path from Kelvingrove to George Square at the heart of the city’s downtown.