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Tens of thousands march for stronger climate change policies in the Netherlands

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Tens of thousands march for stronger climate change policies in the Netherlands
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Reuters
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Tens of thousands of protesters gathered in Amsterdam on Sunday, demanding the Dutch government take stronger action against climate change.

Organisers estimated 40,000 people turned out for the protest, despite poor weather conditions.

"Our government must opt for real solutions for families, young people, small entrepreneurs, employees and farmers," environmental organisation Milieudefensie said on its website.

"The big polluters have to pay fairly...The climate is not waiting."

Banners carried throughout the demonstration shared a range of messages, challenging the government to "change the system," or "down with borders, up with forests," and one that simply read: "help."

According to a January report from the Dutch Environmental Assessment Agency, the Netherlands was trailing far behind climate targets set for 2020.

READ MORE: Dutch need drastic measures to reach 2020 climate goals

Heleen de Coninck, a Dutch climate change researcher and a lead author on a recent report for the UN's Intergovernmental Panal on Climate Change (IPCC), said on Sunday "the world is changing fast, no matter how you turn it."

"With amitious climate policy or without," she said. "The Netherlands will never be the same again."