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Global climate strike: Greta Thunberg and school students lead climate crisis protest – live updates Global climate strike: Greta Thunberg and school students lead climate crisis protest – live updates
(38 minutes later)
Thousands of people are striking in Boston, Mass.
Organizers expected some 10,000 people to rally at City Hall Plaz. for the Boston Climate Strike — some 10,000 people were expected — organized by youth climate activists.
Boston City Councilor Michelle Wu and former Environmental Protection Agency head Gina McCarthy were among scheduled speakers, according to NBC10 Boston.
Miami striker: ‘Does it matter if we’re under 15 feet of water or 50 feet?’
Dan Gelber, the mayor of Miami Beach, received a warmer reception than any politician might have expected when he emerged to address the hundreds of student climate campaigners making a racket right outside his office window.
Perhaps it’s the $500m dollars his city is investing over the next five years to combat the effects of sea level rise, which already leaves neighborhoods under water during higher than usual tides. Scientists predict up to a three feet sea level rise by 2050.
Understated sign of the day award at Miami Beach #ClimateStrike won hands down by this dude @GuardianUS #schoolstrike4climate pic.twitter.com/qj36M4o6Ry
Gelber pointed out the strides already taken to improve things on this island city barely seven by one miles in size: an aggressive program of elevating roads and laying larger capacity drainage pipes, along with investing in modern pump equipment and technology to faster shift the rising flood waters. It’s little wonder the environmentally-conscious city’s slogan is Rising Above.
And today the Miami Herald reported on what could become the city’s most ambitious project yet, a proposal to turn the city-owned golf course into a 115-acre wetland park, which the newspaper says is certain to test the boundaries of what the public will accept in the name of resilience.
“Change is never easy,” Miami Beach commissioner Ricky Arriola said. “If we’re truly serious about dealing with climate change then everything is on the table, including the golf course. If we’re not willing to even talk about it then we’re just paying lip service.”
Gabriella Marchesani, 17, organizer of the Miami Beach youth climate strike, praises the city’s efforts but says more needs to be done to address the causes of the climate crisis as well as dealing with its effects.
“Miami Beach has spent a lot of money on adaptation, it can be the leading city and we hope other cities in Florida will follow,” she said. “But this cannot be done slowly, and we need climate policy. Does it matter if we’re under 15 feet of water or 50 feet?”
Nurse Angel Allen and her family drove more than 100 miles from Port St Lucie to join the Miami Beach #ClimateStrike Malik, 15, says he just wants there to be a world to visit in the future #schoolstrike4climate @GuardianUS pic.twitter.com/UTKZlAqEKN
Thousands converge on Battery Park, New York
Most New York strikers have now made it down to Battery Park where a stage has been set up close to the water. Hundreds of people are packed around the stage, Greta is slated to speak, and many more are camped out sitting on the grass in the park.
Battery Park is packed with people #ClimateStrike pic.twitter.com/Sr8tRI76Tu
Young speakers took the stage giving personal testimonies of how the climate crisis is affecting them, denouncing politicians on both sides, saying just believing the facts isn’t enough without action.
When Jaden Smith took the stage, people started running the stage. In between two songs he reminded the crowd: “We gotta show people we care about this.”
Climate meme power
People keep stopping Lauren Drabenstott, an NYU student, for pictures of her double-sided poster. “I just felt like it’s a good way to get across the younger generation.” #ClimateStrike pic.twitter.com/w5vhRmvzOa
Dorian victims convinced of link to climate change
Reporting from the hurricane-hit Bahamas last week, I met David Dean, a sous chef at one of its holiday resorts. “My wife and kids had me as ‘dead’ on Facebook because they couldn’t find me,” he said. “When I called them, there was a lot of crying.”
Like many in these Caribbean islands, Dean is convinced that the climate crisis in making hurricanes such as Dorian more likely and more intense. “It was very hot,” the 38-year-old said. “That’s why the hurricane was coming to us. Heat brings the hurricane and makes it worse.”
Some 52 people are confirmed dead in the Bahamas, a figure expected to rise, and more than 1,300 are still missing. The scale of destruction was astonishing, as if a giant with a child’s temperament had run amok, flipping over cars and buses like toys. As so often, the underclass suffers the most.
The science is complex but this Guardian article explains how global heating made Dorian bigger, wetter and deadlier.
Many in the Bahamas are determined to stay the course, not least because tourism is so crucial to the economy. The owners of the hard hit Treasure Cay beach, marine and golf resort declared their intention to rebuild. But some residents also expressed concern that such efforts could be undone by the next hurricane, and the one after that.
For now the Bahamas is dealing with scars, mental and physical. Dean told me: “Now, if I feel a little rain, it might be drive me crazy. I’m traumatised. I don’t ever want to go through that again.”
'The poor are punished': Dorian lays bare inequality in the Bahamas
This video is great at capturing some of the scale of the New York action.This video is great at capturing some of the scale of the New York action.
NYCs massive #ClimateStrike march has begun, from Foley Sq down Centre St to Chambers St across to Broadway... and down to the Battery! Thank you @ClimateCrisis and everyone else marching! pic.twitter.com/WUpeRP0ZQSNYCs massive #ClimateStrike march has begun, from Foley Sq down Centre St to Chambers St across to Broadway... and down to the Battery! Thank you @ClimateCrisis and everyone else marching! pic.twitter.com/WUpeRP0ZQS
Which countries contribute most to the climate crisis? How much is the US to blame?Which countries contribute most to the climate crisis? How much is the US to blame?
China produces the most heat-trapping pollution, followed by the US, the European Union, India and Russia. But historically, the US has contributed more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere than any other nation.China produces the most heat-trapping pollution, followed by the US, the European Union, India and Russia. But historically, the US has contributed more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere than any other nation.
The US also has high emissions per capita, compared to other developed countries. And Americans buy products made in China, therefore supporting China’s carbon footprint.The US also has high emissions per capita, compared to other developed countries. And Americans buy products made in China, therefore supporting China’s carbon footprint.
What has happened to the US Environmental Protection Agency with climate change?What has happened to the US Environmental Protection Agency with climate change?
The EPA has begun efforts to eliminate climate rules for power plants, cars and the methane leaked from oil and gas facilities.The EPA has begun efforts to eliminate climate rules for power plants, cars and the methane leaked from oil and gas facilities.
Has the US already pulled out of the Paris accord? What if Democrats win next election?Has the US already pulled out of the Paris accord? What if Democrats win next election?
The US has not yet exited the international accord, in which every other nation on earth agreed to voluntarily begin to curb emissions. The deal was meant to prevent global average temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above preindustrial levels.The US has not yet exited the international accord, in which every other nation on earth agreed to voluntarily begin to curb emissions. The deal was meant to prevent global average temperatures from rising more than 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit) above preindustrial levels.
Technically, the US cannot leave the agreement until the day after the November 2020 election, when Trump will still be president regardless of the outcome.Technically, the US cannot leave the agreement until the day after the November 2020 election, when Trump will still be president regardless of the outcome.
A Democrat president could rejoin the deal.A Democrat president could rejoin the deal.
Is Donald Trump making climate change worse with his rollbacks?Is Donald Trump making climate change worse with his rollbacks?
The US is falling far short of its commitments to curb heat-trapping pollution, in part because Trump has gutted efforts made by his predecessor, Barack Obama.The US is falling far short of its commitments to curb heat-trapping pollution, in part because Trump has gutted efforts made by his predecessor, Barack Obama.
The country is on track to cut emissions 13% to 16% below 2005 levels by 2020, according to the analysis firm Rhodium Group. That’s short of the 17% reduction the US promised in the Copenhagen Accord. “Looking ahead to 2025, the US is on track to achieve reductions anywhere from 12% to 19% below 2005 levels absent major policy changes—a far cry from its Paris Agreement pledge to reduce emissions 26% to 28%,” Rhodium Group explains.The country is on track to cut emissions 13% to 16% below 2005 levels by 2020, according to the analysis firm Rhodium Group. That’s short of the 17% reduction the US promised in the Copenhagen Accord. “Looking ahead to 2025, the US is on track to achieve reductions anywhere from 12% to 19% below 2005 levels absent major policy changes—a far cry from its Paris Agreement pledge to reduce emissions 26% to 28%,” Rhodium Group explains.
The US, however, represents 15% of world emissions.The US, however, represents 15% of world emissions.
Is Donald Trump a climate change denier? What is his record?Is Donald Trump a climate change denier? What is his record?
Before becoming president, Trump called climate change a Chinese hoax. In an interview with Piers Morgan, he deflected questions about how his policies promote continued climate-change causing emissions. He said the US has “the cleanest climates” and “China, India, Russia, many other nations, they have not very good air, not very good water.”Before becoming president, Trump called climate change a Chinese hoax. In an interview with Piers Morgan, he deflected questions about how his policies promote continued climate-change causing emissions. He said the US has “the cleanest climates” and “China, India, Russia, many other nations, they have not very good air, not very good water.”
Trump’s White House has downplayed the dangers of the climate crisis, including disagreeing with a federal report showing it threatens the US economy. Many of the president’s appointees have denied climate change, and government scientists say their work on the crisis has been silenced.Trump’s White House has downplayed the dangers of the climate crisis, including disagreeing with a federal report showing it threatens the US economy. Many of the president’s appointees have denied climate change, and government scientists say their work on the crisis has been silenced.
It is, of course, worth keeping in mind today the specific demands that climate groups have for meaningful action. The Youth Climate Strike Coalition in the US, has issued a set of policy demands which includes:It is, of course, worth keeping in mind today the specific demands that climate groups have for meaningful action. The Youth Climate Strike Coalition in the US, has issued a set of policy demands which includes:
Transform our economy to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2030 and phase out all fossil fuel extraction through a just and equitable transition, creating millions of good jobsTransform our economy to 100% clean, renewable energy by 2030 and phase out all fossil fuel extraction through a just and equitable transition, creating millions of good jobs
A halt to all leasing and permitting for fossil fuel extraction, processing and infrastructure projects immediatelyA halt to all leasing and permitting for fossil fuel extraction, processing and infrastructure projects immediately
Respect of Indigenous Land and Sovereignty and Environmental JusticeRespect of Indigenous Land and Sovereignty and Environmental Justice
Protection and restoration of 50% of the world’s lands and oceans including a halt to all deforestation by 2030Protection and restoration of 50% of the world’s lands and oceans including a halt to all deforestation by 2030
Investment in farmers and regenerative agriculture and an end to subsidies for industrial agricultureInvestment in farmers and regenerative agriculture and an end to subsidies for industrial agriculture
Downtown New York City is packed with sign-bearing people of all ages, though the crowd noticeably skews young. Students from all over NYC have come to the march. Many young children are accompanied by their parents while middle and high school students are here with their friends. Almost all groups have posters in hand.Downtown New York City is packed with sign-bearing people of all ages, though the crowd noticeably skews young. Students from all over NYC have come to the march. Many young children are accompanied by their parents while middle and high school students are here with their friends. Almost all groups have posters in hand.
On the way down to the march, I caught up with students from Professional Performing Arts School, who caught the subway to attend the strike together. They met up at school and decided to go to the march in a group.On the way down to the march, I caught up with students from Professional Performing Arts School, who caught the subway to attend the strike together. They met up at school and decided to go to the march in a group.
“I just want the world to exist the way I knew it was growing up,” said Nyla Robothan, a 15-year-old student at the school, on why she’s striking.“I just want the world to exist the way I knew it was growing up,” said Nyla Robothan, a 15-year-old student at the school, on why she’s striking.
Caught up with students from Professional Performing Arts School in New York who were taking the subway en route to the march. “I just want the world to exist the way I knew when I was growing up,” Nyla, a student, told me. #ClimateStrike pic.twitter.com/dztcOndH1HCaught up with students from Professional Performing Arts School in New York who were taking the subway en route to the march. “I just want the world to exist the way I knew when I was growing up,” Nyla, a student, told me. #ClimateStrike pic.twitter.com/dztcOndH1H
Many say this isn’t their first march, having participating in other climate marches or the March For Our Lives protest in 2018. They say that they feel like their future feels uncertain because of the climate crisis, yet no one is listening to their generation.Many say this isn’t their first march, having participating in other climate marches or the March For Our Lives protest in 2018. They say that they feel like their future feels uncertain because of the climate crisis, yet no one is listening to their generation.
“Our planet is dying, and no one’s going to be doing anything except for us right now,” said Arlene Guevara, 17, a student at Beacon High School in Manhattan.“Our planet is dying, and no one’s going to be doing anything except for us right now,” said Arlene Guevara, 17, a student at Beacon High School in Manhattan.
Arlene Guevara and Melanie Garcia, two students from Beacon High School. “Our planet is dying, and no one’s going to be doing anything except for us right now,” Arlene told me. pic.twitter.com/NGjHSbhcNdArlene Guevara and Melanie Garcia, two students from Beacon High School. “Our planet is dying, and no one’s going to be doing anything except for us right now,” Arlene told me. pic.twitter.com/NGjHSbhcNd
The march is slowly making its way down to Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan, where speakers, including Greta Thunberg, are slated to speak in the afternoon.The march is slowly making its way down to Battery Park at the southern tip of Manhattan, where speakers, including Greta Thunberg, are slated to speak in the afternoon.
We are expecting hundreds of Amazon workers to strike later in their HQ city of Seattle, Washington.We are expecting hundreds of Amazon workers to strike later in their HQ city of Seattle, Washington.
Levi Pulkkinen is there to report on this for us and ahead of the strikes there, sent us this explainer of how some of the giant firm’s workers are taking action and Thursday’s move by Jeff Bezos pledging to improve Amazon’s environmental impact:Levi Pulkkinen is there to report on this for us and ahead of the strikes there, sent us this explainer of how some of the giant firm’s workers are taking action and Thursday’s move by Jeff Bezos pledging to improve Amazon’s environmental impact:
After months agitating for climate accountability from their employer, Amazon.com workers celebrated Thursday as the Seattle-based retail and cloud computing giant pledged to zero out carbon emissions by 2040.After months agitating for climate accountability from their employer, Amazon.com workers celebrated Thursday as the Seattle-based retail and cloud computing giant pledged to zero out carbon emissions by 2040.
The announcement from CEO Jeff Bezos came as about 1,500 Amazon workers prepared to walkout Friday as part of the global strike for climate change. The disruption would mark the first time white-collar Amazon workers have walked off the job.The announcement from CEO Jeff Bezos came as about 1,500 Amazon workers prepared to walkout Friday as part of the global strike for climate change. The disruption would mark the first time white-collar Amazon workers have walked off the job.
Asserting that Bezos’ pledge “proves that collective action and employee pressure works,” organizers of the stoppage reiterated demands that Amazon Web Services stop doing business with fossil fuel companies, and that the company cut ties with lobbyists, politicians and researchers hostile to climate science.Asserting that Bezos’ pledge “proves that collective action and employee pressure works,” organizers of the stoppage reiterated demands that Amazon Web Services stop doing business with fossil fuel companies, and that the company cut ties with lobbyists, politicians and researchers hostile to climate science.
Those calls were left unaddressed by the company, which did announce plans to acquire 100,000 electric delivery vans manufactured by an Amazon-funded company and an $100m commitment to an environmental restoration fund managed by The Nature Conservancy. In a statement, Bezos described the initiatives as evidencing a shift within Amazon.Those calls were left unaddressed by the company, which did announce plans to acquire 100,000 electric delivery vans manufactured by an Amazon-funded company and an $100m commitment to an environmental restoration fund managed by The Nature Conservancy. In a statement, Bezos described the initiatives as evidencing a shift within Amazon.
“We’re done being in the middle of the herd on this issue — we’ve decided to use our size and scale to make a difference,” Bezos said. “If a company with as much physical infrastructure as Amazon — which delivers more than 10 billion items a year — can meet the Paris Agreement 10 years early, then any company can.”“We’re done being in the middle of the herd on this issue — we’ve decided to use our size and scale to make a difference,” Bezos said. “If a company with as much physical infrastructure as Amazon — which delivers more than 10 billion items a year — can meet the Paris Agreement 10 years early, then any company can.”
Amazon, making good on a promise offered earlier in the year, also for the first time released an accounting of its carbon footprint. The assessment, audited by Paris-based certification agency Bureau Veritas, showed Amazon’s direct and indirect CO2 emissions amounted to 44.4 million metric tons in 2018, a year that saw 37.1 billion metric tons of the greenhouse gas released globally.Amazon, making good on a promise offered earlier in the year, also for the first time released an accounting of its carbon footprint. The assessment, audited by Paris-based certification agency Bureau Veritas, showed Amazon’s direct and indirect CO2 emissions amounted to 44.4 million metric tons in 2018, a year that saw 37.1 billion metric tons of the greenhouse gas released globally.
In Seattle, students will march from Cal Anderson Park in Capitol Hill to City Hall starting at noon.From 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., the marchers will hold a youth-led rally for climate justice at City Hall.https://t.co/mKzqh8INSRIn Seattle, students will march from Cal Anderson Park in Capitol Hill to City Hall starting at noon.From 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., the marchers will hold a youth-led rally for climate justice at City Hall.https://t.co/mKzqh8INSR
The Guardian’s Latin American correspondent Tom Phillips has spotted a striking banner in Guadalajara, Mexico.The Guardian’s Latin American correspondent Tom Phillips has spotted a striking banner in Guadalajara, Mexico.
"What's the point in studying for a non-existent future?" #ClimateStrike protesters in Guadalajara, Mexico today pic via @LibiaServin pic.twitter.com/XVpvfw6AVb"What's the point in studying for a non-existent future?" #ClimateStrike protesters in Guadalajara, Mexico today pic via @LibiaServin pic.twitter.com/XVpvfw6AVb
Here’s some footage from climate strikes around the world today:Here’s some footage from climate strikes around the world today:
Miami student Greta Rodriguez feels exactly the same way as the famous teenage climate activist who shares her first name, and had a similar message as she joined dozens of classmates to protest in Miami Beach: We’ve just had enough.Miami student Greta Rodriguez feels exactly the same way as the famous teenage climate activist who shares her first name, and had a similar message as she joined dozens of classmates to protest in Miami Beach: We’ve just had enough.
The 15-year-old was among a party of 50 students from the Cushman private school in Key Biscayne who wanted to make their voices heard in this low-lying coastal city that is recognized as ground zero for sea level rise.The 15-year-old was among a party of 50 students from the Cushman private school in Key Biscayne who wanted to make their voices heard in this low-lying coastal city that is recognized as ground zero for sea level rise.
“We’ve had enough of big business and their trash, burning fossil fuels, depleting the earth,” she said. “It has to change.”“We’ve had enough of big business and their trash, burning fossil fuels, depleting the earth,” she said. “It has to change.”
Chaperoned by biology teacher Jen Russell, the Cushman kids were among the loudest at the Miami Beach strike. “They wanted to be here and the student government association organized the whole thing,” Russell said.Chaperoned by biology teacher Jen Russell, the Cushman kids were among the loudest at the Miami Beach strike. “They wanted to be here and the student government association organized the whole thing,” Russell said.
“It was important to them. We can talk to them as adults but it’s the children who have the voice, it’s their future.”“It was important to them. We can talk to them as adults but it’s the children who have the voice, it’s their future.”
Delighted to meet these smart young ladies from @CushmanSchool at Miami Beach #schoolstrike4climate today. About 50 Cushman students attended, says biology teacher Jen Russell #ClimateStrike @GuardianUS pic.twitter.com/w7dgKolraODelighted to meet these smart young ladies from @CushmanSchool at Miami Beach #schoolstrike4climate today. About 50 Cushman students attended, says biology teacher Jen Russell #ClimateStrike @GuardianUS pic.twitter.com/w7dgKolraO
The Miami Beach strike drew hundreds of students from schools, colleges and universities across South Florida. A similar, simultaneous event outside the Broward school district headquarters in Fort Lauderdale attracted another large crowd.The Miami Beach strike drew hundreds of students from schools, colleges and universities across South Florida. A similar, simultaneous event outside the Broward school district headquarters in Fort Lauderdale attracted another large crowd.
While private schools such as Cushman turned up with numbers, local public school leaders proved less amenable to students walking out of classes, however. Elijah Ruby, 17, a senior at South Broward high school, was banned from his prom for handing out flyers for the Fort Lauderdale event, according to the Miami Herald, and both the Broward and Miami-Dade school districts announced that absences for the strike would be recorded as unexcused.While private schools such as Cushman turned up with numbers, local public school leaders proved less amenable to students walking out of classes, however. Elijah Ruby, 17, a senior at South Broward high school, was banned from his prom for handing out flyers for the Fort Lauderdale event, according to the Miami Herald, and both the Broward and Miami-Dade school districts announced that absences for the strike would be recorded as unexcused.
At the New York event are Zariah, age seven, and Lori Sapphire, who says: “We’re here to save the planet. So no packaging. It’s an easy solution. Focus on solar energy. No more cars burning oil. Stop taking every mineral from the earth. Go back to the simple ways.At the New York event are Zariah, age seven, and Lori Sapphire, who says: “We’re here to save the planet. So no packaging. It’s an easy solution. Focus on solar energy. No more cars burning oil. Stop taking every mineral from the earth. Go back to the simple ways.
“There’s enough for everyone. Stop burning the forests because we want to eat meat and soybeans. Use hemp for everything. It almost a joke that everything were doing is being so selfishly and unconsciously. It like we’re not from the planet, otherwise we’d care.”“There’s enough for everyone. Stop burning the forests because we want to eat meat and soybeans. Use hemp for everything. It almost a joke that everything were doing is being so selfishly and unconsciously. It like we’re not from the planet, otherwise we’d care.”
The crowds in New York are massive but everyone is slowly making their way down to Battery Park.The crowds in New York are massive but everyone is slowly making their way down to Battery Park.
Earlier at the breakfast meeting for indigenous people from the Amazon and Indonesia, 19 year old Artemisa Barbosa Ribeiro, a climate activist known as Artemisa Xakriabá, told the Guardian she is thankful for all the young people who are joining the movement.Earlier at the breakfast meeting for indigenous people from the Amazon and Indonesia, 19 year old Artemisa Barbosa Ribeiro, a climate activist known as Artemisa Xakriabá, told the Guardian she is thankful for all the young people who are joining the movement.
“ I can see a future where we can make a difference but for that we must be listened to and respected,” she said, describing how her people, the Xakriabá peoples, a group of approximately 12 thousand people who live on the left bank of the São Francisco River, in the municipality of São João das Missões, in the state of Minas Gerais, have watched as mining companies have denied them access to the river and its water.“ I can see a future where we can make a difference but for that we must be listened to and respected,” she said, describing how her people, the Xakriabá peoples, a group of approximately 12 thousand people who live on the left bank of the São Francisco River, in the municipality of São João das Missões, in the state of Minas Gerais, have watched as mining companies have denied them access to the river and its water.
“The scarcity of water in the territory is noticeable” she says. “ We need the river and the water for our living and for our spiritual health, our connection to the earth. So access to the river is a big issue for us.”“The scarcity of water in the territory is noticeable” she says. “ We need the river and the water for our living and for our spiritual health, our connection to the earth. So access to the river is a big issue for us.”
Ribeiro, who was recently in Washington DC to demand action from members of the US congress alongside Greta Thunberg, said she felt that Jaire Bolsnaro’s government have a plan for all indigenous people.Ribeiro, who was recently in Washington DC to demand action from members of the US congress alongside Greta Thunberg, said she felt that Jaire Bolsnaro’s government have a plan for all indigenous people.
“I believe they want to assassinate us,” she said frankly. “It’s got much worse in the last eight months. We need support from outside the country because from the inside we have no support.“I believe they want to assassinate us,” she said frankly. “It’s got much worse in the last eight months. We need support from outside the country because from the inside we have no support.
“The main thing you can do in the west to help is to stop importing hard wood because that is causing deforestation and exploitation. That is the best way you can help,” Ribeiro added.“The main thing you can do in the west to help is to stop importing hard wood because that is causing deforestation and exploitation. That is the best way you can help,” Ribeiro added.
Here is a message from Greta Thunberg, who will be making a speech at the New York event later in Battery Park:Here is a message from Greta Thunberg, who will be making a speech at the New York event later in Battery Park: