Thousands of Portlanders Protest for More Urgent Action on Climate Change – Blogtown

Thousands of Portlanders marched on Friday for more urgent climate action. Isabelle Garcia

Thousands of Portlanders took to the streets on Friday, calling on elected leaders to take more decisive action on climate change. The event, organized by the Portland Youth Climate Strike, also targeted businesses and organizations that organizers say are working against the city’s climate goals.


“We need adults to go beyond calling young activists ‘inspirational,'” strike organizer Adah Crandall said in a press release, “they need to join this movement with us and make their to protect our common future”.

More than two thousand people gathered outside City Hall on Friday morning to deliver a climate pledge to Portland officials. The pledge called on city leaders to ‘act decisively’ to fight climate change by opposing new investments in fossil fuels, refusing monetary contributions from the oil, gas and coal industries. , designing climate policies that put the health of their constituents first, and supporting environmental justice initiatives “at every possible opportunity.

City Commissioner Carmen Rubio, Multnomah County Commissioner Sharon Meieran, Milwaukie Mayor Mark Gamba and State Representatives Maxine Dexter and Khanh Pham joined protesters outside City Hall on Friday morning to sign the pledge climatic. Portland City Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty and Multnomah County Commissioner Susheela Jayapal also signed the pledge, but were unable to attend in person.

Two people holding signed pieces of paper with their fists in the air

State representatives Maxine Dexter and Khanh Pham keep their climate commitments. Isabelle Garcia

“People will tell you that you are idealistic and not rooted in reality, but the truth is that if they are not taking action on the climate crisis, they are the ones who are not rooted in reality. “Pham said. crowd after the signing of the pledge. “It is so clear that we are in a crisis situation and if we do not respond and react with political changes that really respond to the current crisis, it is the idealists who think that the status quo will work.

City Commissioner Dan Ryan posted a message on social media in support of the strike, but did not immediately respond to the Mercurywhether or not he plans to sign the climate pledge. Mayor Ted Wheeler’s office also did not respond to the Mercurywhether he plans to sign the recognizance. City Commissioner Mingus Mapps’ office declined to comment.

Two people with a megaphone stand in front of a crowd

Thousands of Portlanders prepare to march. Isabelle Garcia

Crowds marched from City Hall to the nearby headquarters of NW Natural and the Portland Business Alliance (PBA) – two of four ‘climate villains’ event organizers identified as preventing the city from making progress on its climate goals – before walking over Burnside Bridge to Revolution Hall, where local environmental organizations had set up a climate festival, with information on local climate issues and live music.

During the march, the students chanted and held up signs expressing their fear for the future if dramatic measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are not taken quickly. According to the latest United Nations climate change report, greenhouse gas emissions must peak by 2025 and halve by 2030 to avoid excessive global warming that will worsen existing climate disasters.

A person waving and holding a sign reading billionaires please suck my dick

Iris Foster (left) during the climate strike Isabelle Garcia

Iris Foster, a student at Lincoln High School, said she had watched “too many depressing documentaries” not to push for greater action on climate change. Foster notes, however, that she only learned about the climate crisis and Portland’s specific weather issues through her own research.

“Being able to join the movement should be more accessible,” Foster said. “There should be classes in school about it.”

A person with short hair holding a sign saying BIPOC is disproportionately affected by climate change

Portland Community College student Nina during the march. Isabelle Garcia

As the march took over Martin Luther King Boulevard in southeast Portland, Nina, a Portland Community College student who provided only the Mercury his first name – led a song in Spanish.

“¡Sí se puede! Yes we can!”

For Nina, climate justice means centering Portlanders of color who are most likely to feel the impacts of climate change first.

“The movement is often led by white people, even though black, indigenous and other people of color have been [calling attention to the climate crisis] for years and are the most affected by it,” said Nina. “It’s as if we were eclipsed.”

A color-coded banner with the faces of the chosen ones on it

The banner of the elected signatories of the climate commitment. Isabelle Garcia

As the march left City Hall, a color-coded banner with dozens of elected officials’ faces hung in front of the building. The green section – public servants who pledged to act quickly on climate change – included the faces of the elected few who signed the climate pledge. The yellow section, representing officials who had failed to respond to organizers’ requests to sign the pledge, was crowded with overlapping faces.

“Right now our leaders have a choice to make,” Crandall said as he stood in front of the banner. “They can either continue to side with the climate villains who are destroying our planet, or side with the young people gathered here today who are fighting for our future.”

The climate festival at Revolution Hall is scheduled to continue until 8 p.m. Friday.

People with several signs supporting climate change action, including one reading you will die of old age, I will die of climate change

Demonstrators gathered in front of the town hall. Isabelle Garcia

Two young people smile at each other while talking into megaphones

Young organizers leading a chant. Isabelle Garcia

A sign saying I want a hot date not a hot planet

“I want a hot date, not a hot planet” Isabelle Garcia

A sign pointing to land is the only MLIF I wouldn't fuck with

“Earth is the only MILF I wouldn’t fuck with” Isabelle Garcia

Students shouting with a chant

Students on the strike for the climate Isabelle Garcia

Teresa H. Sadler