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Links to Press/ Media

Highlights:

Ted Talk

Anna Kernahan, Kaitlyn Laverty: Young climate justice activists call for action | TED Talk

Article in Teen Vogue/The Guardian about Solo But Not Alone https://www.teenvogue.com/story/youth-climate-strikes-rural-areas/amp

On Stephen Nolan’s The Top Table show on BBC One for an episode dedicated to climate change https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/m000gk75/the-top-table-series-4-18032020

Amnesty Brave Award Article from amnesty.org.uk https://www.amnesty.org.uk/braveawards

Wrote an opinion piece for Belfast Live as a part of their #do1thing campaign: https://www.belfastlive.co.uk/news/news-opinion/arent-striking-miss-school-want-17557980

Full List:

NVTV TV Show called Anna Kernahan: In focus: http://www.nvtv.co.uk/shows/in-focus-anna-kernahan-fridays-for-future/

Article and painting by Jens Malmgren: https://www.malmgren.nl/post/2019-12-29-Anna-Kernahan

Global Centre for Education Interview: https://www.developmenteducationreview.com/issue/issue-30/interview-anna-kernahan-climate-strike-activist

Promo video for the #climatestrikeonline launch https://www.instagram.com/p/B9qvgp3naxG/?igshid=vc6lker9nbr5

Virtual speech at the strike in Wellington, New Zealand https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=cSOo__j0JIA

Interview for the Guardian on solo- striking https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/feb/13/young-climate-strikers-go-it-alone

Link to a bbc radio Ulster interview https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000f51m

Link to Instagram post on a Sunday World Article on solo- striking https://www.instagram.com/p/B83Vl4zH8Ji/?igshid=1wdrw4vm81eo5

Link to article on the UKSCN conference being cancelled due to storm Dennis: https://inews.co.uk/news/youth-climate-strike-conference-cancelled-storm-dennis-1848603

Belfast live Valentine’s Day strike article: https://www.belfastlive.co.uk/news/valentines-day-climate-strike-rally-17745554

Guardian interview on solo- striking: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/feb/13/young-climate-strikers-go-it-alone

Interviewed on Good Morning Ulster for BBC Radio Ulster on generational differences in opinions on the climate crisis: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000f6d1

Promotional article for Valentine’s Day strike: http://theecoeejit.blogspot.com/2020/02/show-some-love-for-planet-youth-strike.html

Interviewed for Unsustainable Magazine: http://www.unsustainablemagazine.com/2020/01/17/anna-kernahan/

Interviewed on Good Morning Ulster for BBC radio Ulster: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b007cps5

Episode 2 of the Empower the Future Show on NVTV: http://www.nvtv.co.uk/shows/empower-the-future-episode-2/

Interviewed for The Newsletter: https://www.newsletter.co.uk/education/ni-teenager-i-d-rather-be-in-school-than-taking-part-in-climate-strikes-1-9201570

Went live on BBC Radio Ulster for the John Toal Show: https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m000dn38

BBC True North Documentary: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p07x3q23

Quote for the Belfast Telegraph article: https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/stormont-environment-body-slammed-over-its-869-flights-38835886.html

Interviewed for Belfast Live: https://www.belfastlive.co.uk/news/belfast-news/greta-thunberg-shows-support-teenage-17486061

Interviewed for The Eco Eejit podcast: https://theecoeejit.blogspot.com/2020/01/podcast-alert-eco-eejit.html?m=1

Blog post on The Eco Eejit on speaking at the Greta Thunberg book reading for the NI Human Rights Festival: https://theecoeejit.blogspot.com/2019/12/you-are-now-entering-extinction-ni.html?m=1

Interviewed by The Eco Eejit for her blog: https://theecoeejit.blogspot.com/2019/11/on-right-side-of-history-fridays-for.html?m=1

Spoke for the act for change video with niyf: https://vimeo.com/375739622

Presented the international youth climate podcast: https://international-youth-climate-podcast.com/

Spoke in the International youth climate podcast: https://international-youth-climate-podcast.com/

Interviewed for Elle Loughran’s blog: http://elleloughran.blogspot.com/

Amnesty International UK quote in Press release: https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/northern-ireland-amnesty-urges-1200-schools-let-pupils-strike-climate

Quote in Eating Better Press Release: https://www.eating-better.org/blog/climate-change-top-concern-for-british-teenagers

NVTV Empower the Future, episode 1: http://www.nvtv.co.uk/shows/empower-the-future-young-people-speak-on-climate-change/

Poetry with Anna: Submersion

TW for depression

We are submerged, with merely enough of us underwater for our exposed bones to be tormented, but we’re too far below the surface to stop the rising flow.

Yet, we flourish to grow above the meniscus,

Just for polluted people to cloud the waters into a murky soup only worthy of death.

Our people, relying on murky protection, are undeserving of the seeds capable of thriving in these waters.

Our people season the waters others grow from to leave behind fresh springs.

Our people are destined to remain beneath the threshold to make room for new life.

Our people are destined for death, so others can live.

_

_

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Thoughts With Anna: Poisoned seas. Desertified land. Toxisied air. This sounds like a description of dystopia, yet it is our current reality.

Poisoned seas. Desertified land. Toxisied air. This sounds like a description of dystopia, yet it is our current reality. The science is crystal: we are in the sixth mass extinction event and it is our fault. We have a duty as homo sapiens to act in vicious love and with determination for the protection of our siblings in our species and of all species. We forget that amongst the myths of eternal economic growth to benefit the top 1%, they are just that: myths. There really is no planet B. We either go extinct and bring all living things down with us, or we fight for our lives. We need to acknowledge our war against life but we blissfully ignore the clear signs, as evidenced through the estimated population of indigenous people in the continent north of Mesoamerica in 1492 being 18 million but by 1890, this had plummeted to 228,000. The hopeful part is that this extinction is not yet inevitable- we can refuse to cooperate in this mindless act of ecocide and genocide, we can choose to rebel against corruption and colonialism and we can take the necessary action needed when facing an unprecedented global emergency that governments have failed to protect us from.

Most people don’t need to hear this lecture, and in fact, it would be patronizing for us in the UK to preach at them as they have been dealing with the consequences of our actions for decades. We act in solidarity with indigenous communities and those on the front lines of the climate crisis today. This fight is already being led by women and people of colour, and these people who have been displaced and are currently dying have been trying to warn us for years. We are working under a struggling, exhausted, broken system, and there’s not just one problem to fix. This is the largest and most intersectional crisis humanity will ever have to face and it is caused by capitalism, colonialism, power, greed, and corruption. It is a failure to materialise or even conceptualise any alternative to our current reality.

The UK is the biggest fossil fuel subsidiser in Europe. Our current political systems have led us to the brink of ecological disaster. The people in power do not want to change because of the economic benefit, so much so that 4 environmental defenders a week are killed in the Global South. We need a decentralised, socially just transition from our current way of life. Our illegal acts against the physical world are symptoms of our deep-rooted issues around social and inter-generational justice. We cannot merely focus on the facts and the science, however important these things are, because this crisis is much bigger than that. Humans have manipulated over 51% of land from forest and grassland to crops and cities which has caused topsoil to be lost 10 to 40 times faster than it can be naturally replenished, 30% of global arable land is now unproductive due to soil erosion and since the 1970s, our insect population has fallen by 60%. These facts are clear and indisputable.

The UK government must know that we are watching them and we are holding them accountable. We won’t let them fill us with empty promises that they wont fulfil once they get the votes. We are looking for them to listen to the science while ensuring equity and climate justice. Now is not the time for political games and power play, this is people’s lives. The longer we wait to act, the more irreversible the damage will be.

If you liked what you read, please consider donating to my Go Fund Me to help me to continue writing and going to university, thank you –>https://www.gofundme.com/f/24w0zcj81c?utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer&utm_campaign=p_na+share-sheet&pc_code=ot_co_dashboard_a&rcid=7b07fb38ca5949469fee759bdb1fe126

Thoughts With Anna: Women’s Day 2022

“Every book, every movie, every shop, is bombarding women with the absurd concept that if they dont fit into this “perfect” unattainable mould, life isn’t worth living. Its exhausting.”

In the current world we live in, every inch of media consumed that is tailored towards women is an ambush of body image, jealousy, boyfriends and fragility. Every book, every movie, every shop, is bombarding women with the absurd concept that if they dont fit into this “perfect” unattainable mould, life isn’t worth living. Its exhausting. As a result, women between the ages of 16 to 24 are almost 3 times as likely to experience a common mental health issue as men, and twice as likely to be diagnosed with anxiety. 


Building on this, there are structural and systematic disadvantages stacked against women in terms of their physical health. Since women are more likely to care for children, they carry the adverse affect that has on their social life and finances, so they are more likely to live in poverty.


It seems archaic that in 2022, after centuries of fighting and after getting the vote, women are still nowhere near equal to men. If we look back at England during the 17th Century, the differences are a lot more obvious than today, but the culture has very much permeated through the decades. Witches fought to keep women’s independent skills such as crafts and medicine but they were gaslit and discriminated against by male professionalism and a violently patriarchal Church. The aftermath of this discrimination can be seen globally- there’s no Democratic country in the world where women have equal rights to men. 


The feminist movement is not an anti-men movement. Feminism is for everyone, no matter your gender, race, sexuality, ethnicity and so on. Your feminism doesn’t have to be perfect. In fact, it’s better for it to be raw, ugly and imperfect. You don’t have to have made a beautiful infographic that has 10,000 likes or have spoken on the global stage in front of world leaders for it to be feminism. We need small, realistic actions at all levels of society.

The future of feminism is global, intersectional and powerful. Its time to stop apologising for being angry, and loud and taking up space. Until every woman has the freedom to say and do what they want without fear of being silenced, the revolution will continue to grow stronger. Grow with us. 

“The future of feminism is global, intersectional and powerful.”

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Poetry With Anna: My Brain Is An Envelope

An envelope locking down on my skull, 

Being sealed by anthropogenic selfishness,

Stamped by anxious infectiousness.

Once exhaustedly unlocked and grappled with, 

The feelings are still impenetrable to me, so 

I inscribe my own story to tell myself, 

But the facade is too soon scratched so i must 

Unfurl the truth stained pages within,

They crinkle and tear into oblivion. 

The dictionary to my thoughts forever erased,

With only an empty envelope

Soon to be replaced.

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COP26 With Anna: Day 6 and 8

I wrote this while at COP26 and am publishing them now with no edits after the fact. I hope it gives some insight, whether that’s emotional or educational. At the time of writing, I wasn’t planning for anyone to read it so it’s not packed full of facts or quotes as my blog posts would usually be. I write my journal as though I’m talking to someone. an unknown entity. I’ve never known who. This is educational more from a personal perspective rather than from an environmental one. It’s proof that climate activists are human beings with human emotions, which I feel is often forgotten about in the media.

“This was the day of another march. As soon as kay and me arrived, there were people and placards and police there in their hundreds and by the end there were over 100,000. You could feel the collective anxiety and adrenaline pulsing through the crowd as we pushed through towards the youth block. Soon, it was too overwhelming and we left quite early due to sensory overload. Protests are painful, particularly when you’re neurodivergent. I’m still glad we were there for the start though, despite how overstimulating I found it as an Autistic person.”

“Today I was in the building. Obama was in the building too. We did an action around #ShowUsTheMoney because they pledged $100bn per year to the most affected countries by 2020 and ordered airstrikes/ military operations in 7 different countries.”

If you liked what you read, please consider donating to my Go Fund Me to help me to continue writing and going to university, thank you –>https://www.gofundme.com/f/24w0zcj81c?utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer&utm_campaign=p_na+share-sheet&pc_code=ot_co_dashboard_a&rcid=7b07fb38ca5949469fee759bdb1fe126

COP26 With Anna: Day 4

I wrote this while at COP26 and am publishing them now with no edits after the fact. I hope it gives some insight, whether that’s emotional or educational. At the time of writing, I wasn’t planning for anyone to read it so it’s not packed full of facts or quotes as my blog posts would usually be. I write my journal as though I’m talking to someone. an unknown entity. I’ve never known who. This is educational more from a personal perspective rather than from an environmental one. It’s proof that climate activists are human beings with human emotions, which I feel is often forgotten about in the media.

“Today was spent doing lots of short things after another. It began with a far too long lasting journalist phonecall in the freezing cold and then on to rapidy replying to emails and writing opinion peices, to recording for the news outside the COP building, to rushing straight to an Extinction Rebellion action and meeting a fellow NI Activist.

The singing heard at this protest showed solidarity in action. You could hear the power in our collective voices and feel the pain and fear felt through the words, which was made exponentially impactful behind the backdrop of the SEC building/green zone at sunset. Being at COP is many things but overwhelming is the term at the forefront for its description.”

COP26 With Anna: Day 3

I wrote this while at COP26 and am publishing them now with no edits after the fact. I hope it gives some insight, whether that’s emotional or educational. At the time of writing, I wasn’t planning for anyone to read it so it’s not packed full of facts or quotes as my blog posts would usually be. I write my journal as though I’m talking to someone. an unknown entity. I’ve never known who. This is educational more from a personal perspective rather than from an environmental one. It’s proof that climate activists are human beings with human emotions, which I feel is often forgotten about in the media.

“Today kay and I went into the city centre to meet up with an NI Journalist and friend to discuss how we would convey how COP is going to our local media and then we walked through an Extinction Rebellion protest. They were apparently doing a lock on at a bank but got arrested.

Kay and I also bought some Iron Bru to truly delve into Scottish culture while in Glasgow. Elijah, Kay, and I then joined a protest which met outside the museum where members of banks were having a meeting to put pressure on them to not fund fossil fuels. Banks have huge power in this economy and therefore a huge responsibility when it comes to the climate crisis. We must hold them accountable for their atrocious actions.”

COP26 With Anna: Day 2

I wrote this while at COP26 and am publishing them now with no edits after the fact. I hope it gives some insight, whether that’s emotional or educational. At the time of writing, I wasn’t planning for anyone to read it so it’s not packed full of facts or quotes as my blog posts would usually be. I write my journal as though I’m talking to someone. an unknown entity. I’ve never known who. This is educational more from a personal perspective rather than from an environmental one. It’s proof that climate activists are human beings with human emotions, which I feel is often forgotten about in the media.

“Today, Kay, who is another Fridays for Future activist from Northern Ireland, arrived in Glasgow and I met her at the bus station. We went straight towards a protest happening but as we went to cross a bridge, an Extinction Rebellion protest was blocking our way. 

We joined it of course. Hearing the beautiful singing and feeling the powerful beat of the samba band in our chests made me feel a strange kind of fearful hope. I have very little hope when it comes to the climate crisis. We have heard empty promises too many times to trust that the ones coming out of COP26 will be any different. 

However, among all of these incredible people, you can feel the power emulating from the crowd. You can feel the collective waves of adrenaline coursing through each one of us and that’s the point in a protest when I feel like we might just make a difference. There is power in the people on the streets, protests do put pressure on the world leaders and protests are a vital part of uprooting a system that so desperately needs uprooted. 

We eventually made it to the original protest we had been heading towards and it was brilliant to see Fridays for Future members I hadn’t seen in years and feel the solidarity that we have despite mainly communicating online due to the global nature of the movement. 

The day ended with a meeting with Fridays for future international to discuss our next steps. “

COP26 with Anna: Day 1

I wrote this while at COP26 and am publishing them now with no edits after the fact. I hope it gives some insight, whether that’s emotional or educational. At the time of writing, I wasn’t planning for anyone to read it so it’s not packed full of facts or quotes as my blog posts would usually be. I write my journal as though I’m talking to someone. an unknown entity. I’ve never known who. This is educational more from a personal perspective rather than from an environmental one. It’s proof that climate activists are human beings with human emotions, which I feel is often forgotten about in the media.

“Today I arrived in Glasgow by boat and bus, having not slept the night before. The sea was rough, causing delays, and the slight fear and apprehension I felt were directly proportional to both slight nausea from the boat and the anxiety of going to COP26.

Firstly, let me get something clear: I wish I didn’t have to do this. I wish I could not miss university lectures or freshers events or work shifts to travel across the border during a global pandemic to a conference. But this is necessary. The climate crisis is terrifying and people on the front lines are dying every day, and so 2 weeks is nothing compared to what MAPA (most affected people and areas) are experiencing. 

I dropped my huge rucksack off at our accommodation and went straight to the MAPA Press conference. The press and police almost outnumbered the activists as we got to the location overlooking the SEC and the River Clyde at sunset. This press conference was to give MAPA the space to talk about their experiences on the front lines of the climate crisis and to say what they wanted to say about COP in a space where they would be listened to, everyone else was there for security and to offer solidarity.

The press were abhorrent in how they acted. MAPA were ignored consistently and the media focused their cameras on the white, European activists for most of the press conference. These are the people we should be listening to: the people on the front lines of the climate crisis, with lived experiences, and who will be disproportionately affected. 

As me and my friend Flint sat on the floor as contributors to the line of security, a reporter stepped right over the top of us and shoved a camera in people’s faces. After telling them to step away multiple times, we had to step in and attempt to remove them physically. The police just watched them shove us. We are mainly teenagers, we don’t deserve to be disrespected and physically hurt as we protect our friends. 

Once Greta arrived, this increased exponentially. It took MAPA shouting to listen to them and white activists shouting to listen to MAPA for a long time for the press to turn their cameras on the MAPA people giving speeches. It was blatant rudeness on the reporters’ part to ignore people speaking into a microphone. these were some of the rawest, most powerful speeches I have ever heard. I cried.

At one point, Greta was upset so we hugged. What else does a friend do? As I attempted to comfort my friend, the same journalist from earlier bruised my arm as they tried to get Greta in the shot that I was ruining. This isn’t right and it’s not OK for the press to treat us as though we aren’t human. She is just 18, let her live her life and treat her with basic respect.

Afterward, we had a Fridays for future chill meeting where we ate hot vegan soup and bread, and of course, drank Irn Bru. It was good to debrief, warm up and talk to people from all over the world that I’ve only seen on zoom calls. The day ended on a more content note.

COP26 With Anna: Day 5

I wrote this while at COP26 and am publishing them now with no edits after the fact. I hope it gives some insight, whether that’s emotional or educational. At the time of writing, I wasn’t planning for anyone to read it so it’s not packed full of facts or quotes as my blog posts would usually be. I write my journal as though I’m talking to someone. an unknown entity. I’ve never known who. This is educational more from a personal perspective rather than from an environmental one. It’s proof that climate activists are human beings with human emotions, which I feel is often forgotten about in the media.

“Today was an early rise to get the 1.25 hr walk done to the starting line before most of the crowds arrived. We walked straight to our friends and gave many hugs and said many hellos before heading towards the briefing that had just started for youth helping out with security. We attached our high-vis arm bands, helped by Cerys’ duct tape and made our way to the rope line.

Although the march was yet to start for another hour, we were bombarded with people and press walking into the space we were trying to protect for MAPA without even asking. After Monday’s experience with the press bruising me while crowdlining I was a bit cautious at first, but soon we were all just telling them to go away and get out quite forcefully, even though if they cared they’d realise it was blatantly obvious they weren’t supposed to be there. They were mostly older white men ignoring the line of rope keeping them out. Just saying.

Once the march began and we were moving, the fear and terror in the tone of people’s voices through the singing and chanting was deafening. Yet us 30,000 + in the crowds weren’t the ones who needed to hear that. The atmosphere of dread and grief that I felt was almost overwhelming but there’s also a hint of power shining through. The power of the most affected people and areas chanting for their lives. The power in us closing major roads in Glasgow because of the crowds. The power in our volume, our strength, our determination. That power that comes from the people is painfully hopeful.

Kay and me left the march early due to sensory overload and went to a quiet cafe to calm down.

In the afternoon kay went back to the march and I went on to speak on a panel at the New York Times Climate Hub. This took a while to get into, with multiple layers of security, having to show proof of ID/a negative covid  test/ vaccination card and getting belongings searched. I didn’t realise these panels were such a big deal until I got there and had to wear a special pass around my neck. Once there, I met up with the other panelists and we went into the green room to wait on our turn to go, and I took my opportunity to fill up on the free refreshments and talk to the people I’d only previously met over zoom.

The panel was super interesting and I learnt a lot from the people I was speaking alongside. It also seemed like the most diverse one. Ours had only women/female presenting people, an indigenous person and half were youth and half were people of colour, whereas we went on to watch the next talk (Thomas Friedman in conversation with US Special presidential envoy for climate John Kerry) which had 2 old white men in suits. The contrasting perspectives made it really engaging and I enjoyed connecting with those people. “

If you liked what you read, please consider donating to my Go Fund Me to help me to continue writing and going to university, thank you –>https://www.gofundme.com/f/24w0zcj81c?utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer&utm_campaign=p_na+share-sheet&pc_code=ot_co_dashboard_a&rcid=7b07fb38ca5949469fee759bdb1fe126

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