Tens of Thousands March for Action on Climate Change

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

An international day of
action on climate change brought tens of thousands onto the streets of
New York City on Sunday, with organizers predicting the biggest protest
on the issue in five years.

About 100,000 people, including United Nations Secretary-General Ban
Ki-moon, former U.S. vice president Al Gore, actor Leonardo DiCaprio and
elected officials from the United States and abroad joined the People’s
Climate March, ahead of Tuesday’s United Nations hosted summit in the
city to discuss reducing carbon emissions that threaten the environment.

Organizers said some 550 busloads of people had arrived for the
rally, which followed similar events in 166 countries including Britain,
France, Afghanistan and Bulgaria.

Thousands more came by public transportation, walked or traveled in private cars.

“Today I am marching for my children. I am marching so they can live
in a world without worrying about the next big storm destroying their
community,” said Bill Aristovolus, the superintendent of an apartment
building in New York City’s working-class Bronx borough.

Moment of silence

A crowd including U.S. Senators Bernard Sanders of Vermont and
Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island marched along the city’s Central
Park, through midtown Manhattan to Times Square, where they stopped for a
moment of silence at 12:58 p.m. (1658 GMT).

Ban, wearing a T-shirt that read “I’m for climate action” marched
arm-in-arm with primatologist Jane Goodall and French Ecology Minister
Segolene Royal.

“This is the planet where our subsequent generations will live,” Ban
told reporters. “There is no ‘Plan B,’ because we do not have ‘Planet
B.’ “

The drums, horns and chants that had echoed off skyscrapers halted
and the bulk of the marchers stood still at 12:58 p.m. ET (1658 GMT) for
a moment of silence.

Organizers billed the event as the largest gathering focused on
climate change since 2009, when tens of thousands gathered  in
Copenhagen in a sometime raucous demonstration that resulted in the
detention of 2,000 protesters.

Warmest August on record

The march comes days after the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration reported that August 2014 was the warmest on record, some
1.35 degrees Fahrenheit (0.75 C) above the 20th century global average
of 60.1 F (15.6 C).

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio on Sunday unveiled a new plan for
the city to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent from 2005
levels by 2050.

All 3,000 major city-owned buildings would be retrofitted with energy
saving heating, cooling and light systems by then, he said, though
meeting the commitment will also require significant investments by
private landlords.

DiCaprio marched towards the front of the group, with members of an
Ecuadorean tribe who have fought a years-long legal battle with Chevron
Corp. over Amazon pollution.

“This is the most important issue of our time,” DiCaprio said. “I’m incredibly proud to be here.”

Credit: Reuters

Kofi Oppong Kyekyeku

I am a Ghanaian Broadcast Journalist/Writer who has an interest in General News, Sports, Entertainment, Health, Lifestyle and many more.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button