Students brought the centres of New Zealand's major cities to a standstill today as they marched to protest inaction in combating climate change.

Thousands of children - even pre-schoolers –took to the streets up and down the country for the second Strike 4 Climate.

Young Wellingtonians marched on Parliament to demand more be done for the climate.

Tejal Shania Kala, Hanna Baldwin, Nicola Edger - all 17 - at the school climate strike in Wellington. Photo / Devon Bolger
Tejal Shania Kala, Hanna Baldwin, Nicola Edger - all 17 - at the school climate strike in Wellington. Photo / Devon Bolger

National, Green, Labour and Opportunities party representatives met the students on Parliament steps.

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Sacred Heart College student, Rachel Collins, told the crowd they want the Government to declare a climate emergency.

Collins said Government's target of reducing net emissions to zero by 2050 wasn't ambitious enough.

"The land can't work for us - we need to work for her. We need to look after her, we need to plant trees, we need to reduce the amount of waste we're putting out there," she said.

MPs also spoke to the crowd.

Green Party MP Chloe Swarbrick thanked the student protestors for striking today.

Swarbrick told the crowd they were right to think the Government wasn't doing enough to save the environment.

"You cannot let them get away with this and I thank all of you for what you're doing to force this place to wake the hell up," she said.

Wellington students arrive at Parliament. Photo / Devon Bolger
Wellington students arrive at Parliament. Photo / Devon Bolger

Students lay down on Queen Street in Auckland, to symbolise the need for people to wake up to climate change, before gathering in Aotea Square.

Students on the climate march on the way to Parliament this morning. Photo / Devon Bolger
Students on the climate march on the way to Parliament this morning. Photo / Devon Bolger
A sign on the climate march in Wellington this morning. Photo / Devon Bolger
A sign on the climate march in Wellington this morning. Photo / Devon Bolger
Striking students gathered in Wellington's Civic Square before their climate protest march to Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Striking students gathered in Wellington's Civic Square before their climate protest march to Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Ten-year-old Toby says he was excited to be part of the protest and classmate, Noah, says they've been talking a lot at school about the threat of climate change.

Muslim community member Zahra Hussaini opened the climate protest in Christchurch, reading a poem to those gathered.

The last protest in Cathedral Square was called to a sudden halt, as the mosque shooting unfolded in the city.

Almost 1000 students re-gathered in the city centre this afternoon.

Student Climate Strike march on Queen Street, central Auckland. Photo / Annabel Reid
Student Climate Strike march on Queen Street, central Auckland. Photo / Annabel Reid

Ministers Eugenie Sage and Megan Wood came out to show their support, with Sage accepting a list of the student's demands

Thousands of Strike 4 Climate students gathered at Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Thousands of Strike 4 Climate students gathered at Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Environment Canterbury councillor, Lan Pham, addressed the students, acknowledging they've failed the next generation.

A CBD Childcare Centre children gathered in Wellington's Civic Square before their climate protest march to Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell
A CBD Childcare Centre children gathered in Wellington's Civic Square before their climate protest march to Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell

She's urged young people not to underestimate their power saying they directly influenced ECAN in declaring a climate emergency last week.

National Coordinator for the climate strike, Sophie Handford, said students they feel they weren't listened to during their first protest of March 15.

Students gather in Aotea Square in Auckland to protest climate change. Photo / Annabel Reid
Students gather in Aotea Square in Auckland to protest climate change. Photo / Annabel Reid
Thousands of Strike 4 Climate students gathered at Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Thousands of Strike 4 Climate students gathered at Parliament. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Handford says among other things, they want the government to declare a climate emergency.

Students lie down on Queen Street in Auckland's CBD during the climate strike. Photo / Peter Meecham
Students lie down on Queen Street in Auckland's CBD during the climate strike. Photo / Peter Meecham

Secondary Principals Association president Mike Williams says it's good to see student focusing on what they can do to make a difference.

He says there's no point just marching - you have to do something.

Williams says he's aware of students in some parts of the country who organised tree-planting.