1212 GMT February 18, 2020
Protesters, many of them school-aged, took over the central business district (CBD) for more than two hours on Friday, rallying at Parliament House and marching through the streets, campaspenews.com.au wrote.
The rally, hosted by a group called Extinction Rebellion, included demonstrators lying ‘dead’ on Swanston Street to show the Earth's sixth mass extinction.
"The climate emergency is not a political issue, it is a scientific fact," a statement from the rally organizers said.
Demonstrators held up posters saying: "Denial is not a policy" and "How dare you steal our future".
The group wanted the federal government to declare a climate and ecological emergency and reduce net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2025.
"Our government isn't acting in accordance with what science and history tells us," the group said ahead of the rally.
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The Australian Broadcasting Corporation is reporting that Scott Morrison is on course to secure a majority government, meaning he has won the 76 seats necessary to govern alone without the support of the crossbench.
"We have a moral duty to rebel, whatever our politics. History shows us that peaceful civil disobedience is an effective way to bring about change."
Greens MP Adam Bandt said Australia must adopt renewable energy to avoid digging up and burning more coal, the single biggest contributor to climate change.
People are "demanding governments step up and take action" to avoid more bushfires and longer droughts, a lack of food and rising sea levels, Bandt told reporters in Melbourne.
"We're exporting coal to the rest of the world at a rate of knots and that is making global warning worse.
"We need to leave coal, oil and gas in the ground."
The action coincided with the Global Climate Strike, also on Friday.