FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 8, 2018
PHOTOS + VIDEO: 30,000 Join San Francisco “Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice” March
San Francisco’s march anchors over 800 global events taking place in 91 countries, including 260+ in the U.S. across almost 50 states, demanding action on climate change
Editor’s Choice: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmi1qDgj
Best of San Francisco: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmnebpub
Best of U.S.: https://flic.kr/s/aHsms7xaKR
San Francisco March Media Pack Here.
San Francisco, CA — Today, 30,000 people took to the streets of San Francisco as part of the “Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice” march. A massive crowd marched from the Embarcadero Plaza to Civic Center, demanding racial and economic justice, an end to fossil fuel production, and a just transition to 100% renewable energy that supports workers and communities.
In California, these demands were put to Gov. Jerry Brown ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit — a meeting of public officials and corporate executives from around the world. March organizers urged support for community-led solutions, starting in places most impacted by pollution and climate change. At Civic Center, the march concluded with the creation of the largest street mural of all time made with charcoal from areas in California impacted by wildfires.
The march brought together people from across California, the U.S., and around the world, including those facing health impacts associated with oil & gas production; those recovering from the devastation of the state’s worsening wildfires; those working to resist the expansion of fossil fuel infrastructure; and those advocating for and building solutions to the climate crisis within their communities. Supported by more than 300 organizations, the march contingents included environmental and climate justice organizations, communities of faith, immigrant justice organizations, Indigenous-led groups, labor organizations, youth, and many more.
Concurrently with the San Francisco march, people around the world are joining more than 800 events in 91 countries under the “Rise for Climate” banner. In the U.S., over 260 events are being held in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Following next week’s Summit in San Francisco and beyond, the global climate movement will continue by building power for the long haul at the state and local level — from November, through 2020, and beyond.
“We are marching alongside thousands of people from around the world who are on the frontlines of fighting big polluters and building new ways to power our neighborhoods through 100% community-owned renewable energy,” said Miya Yoshitani, Executive Director, Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN). “We’re sending a message to the elected officials and corporate executives gathering for the summit next week that we need equitable, community-led solutions, not profit-driven approaches like cap-and-trade that allow big polluters to buy and sell our right to clean air and a stable climate.”
“We foster climate resilient neighborhoods by organizing for parks and urban farms, affordable housing near transit, and by bringing investments to underserved neighborhoods,” said Antonio Diaz, Organizational Director, People Organizing to Demand Environmental and Economic Rights (PODER). “We also build grassroots political power to take action. These are the kind of community-led solutions that are needed to tackle the climate crisis and restore our community’s health. Real climate leadership needs to address the racial, social and economic injustices we face, especially for those most impacted by the climate crisis — low-income immigrant communities, indigenous communities and communities of color.”
“Today, we’ve shown what true leadership looks like,” said Pennie Opal Plant, Idle No More SF Bay. “Tens of thousands of us demanding that Jerry Brown and other government officials listen to the people and stand against the commodification of nature. We’re stopping pipelines, demanding a managed transition off of fossil fuels, and creating a vibrantly safe and healthy future for those alive now and those to come. Today we took a step toward that future.”
“From firefighters to electricians, from nurses to truck drivers, working people see the impact every day that climate change has on our work and our health,” said Rudy Gonzalez, Executive Director of the San Francisco Labor Council. “We do not have to choose between a healthy economy and a healthy planet. With the ballot box and in the streets, we will stand up for a world where all working people have union jobs with living wages, and that these jobs support a sustainable future where we can all thrive.”
“We are facing challenging times across the country when it come to climate change,” said Rev. Dr. Ambrose Carroll, Green The Church. “Extreme weather is having an impact on everyone everywhere throughout our nation. Flames of fire are burning California. Record temperatures are heat waves of harm from Texas to Louisiana to Florida. Rivers are overflowing and flooding small towns and cities. And the Trump Administration is denying climate change and tearing down successful and achievable climate change and air pollution protections endangering everyone, particularly the least of these—our most vulnerable—our elderly, low-income and children.”
U.S. Highlights beyond San Francisco include:
- On September 6 in New York City – people gathered in Battery Park to call on Governor Andrew Cuomo, Mayor Bill de Blasio, and all elected officials move the state off fossil fuels through a just transition to 100% renewable energy. Around a dozen local actions will take place across the state around September 8. Details here.
- Miami, Florida – Thousands will rally at a high-profile concert to call attention to the impacts of hurricanes and sea level rise on the city’s communities, calling on Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez to commit the County to achieving 100% renewable energy goals by 2050.
- Puerto Rico – 1,500 young people and their families will join together to urge the government to take bold and meaningful climate action, and motivate communities to initiate their own renewable energy projects. Community leaders in Ponce and Vega Baja are hosting events.
- Portland, Oregon – A coalition fighting Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) in Jordan Cove will lift up frontline communities most impacted by LNG.
- New Orleans – Advocates will focus their action on stopping the Bayou Bridge pipeline (BBP) and transitioning to 100% renewable energy, and traveling to neighboring St. James, in so-called “Cancer Alley” where community members are demanding Governor John Edwards create an evacuation route pending an inevitable spill from BBP.
- Tacoma, Washington – Communities will use arts and storytelling to show the intersections between those impacted by an LNG facility and those detained at the neighboring ICE detention facility.
- Colorado – Labor, faith and environmental leaders will bring hundreds of people together for a broad discussion to develop a clear set of demands for the next governor, who will be asked to support a just and equitable transition to clean energy.
- Baltimore – Representatives of economic justice, faith and environmental communities will gather to demand local leaders fill the void left by Washington. The event will feature guest speakers, performers, demonstrations, and free events including an “action village” for participants to learn how to join the movement.
- Boston – Thousands will protest a planned Eversource high-voltage electric substation, calling on Mayor Walsh to halt construction in the flood-prone area adjacent to 8 million gallons of jet fuel. Participants will also rally for better, safer jobs, common-sense protection for immigrants and bold action on climate change.
- Minnesota – Dozens of organizations from across issue areas will mobilize and build power for climate change action with an event including keynote speakers, a festival with kid-friendly projects, workshops, youth panels and more.
- Flint, Michigan – A combination of labor, racial justice, faith, and environmental justice groups are gathering for the Michigan Environmental Justice Summit, which will work to develop a list of comprehensive demands for a just transition to a clean energy future.
- Illinois – Workers from the nation’s largest warehouse hub in the suburb of Joliet, will be joined by local labor leaders, community activist groups, advocates for the immigrant community, and environmental justice groups to make a series of demands of local elected leaders and business owners related to the area’s temporary low-wage jobs and diesel truck emissions and the need for 100% clean energy.
May Boeve, Executive Director, 350.org: “Climate change is the defining issue of our time, it is a crisis of democracy, justice and human rights. The climate movement is made stronger by its sister movements: for human rights, economic justice, democracy, and much more. This weekend Rise for Climate will demonstrate the growing strength and diversity of the climate movement. People power is accelerating the change we need to see, and usher in a new era of clean air and better health. Communities everywhere will show loudly and clearly what is expected from decision-makers to deliver on real climate leadership and build a fossil-free economy.”
Paul Getsos, National Director, Peoples Climate Movement: “PCM is building alliances around climate among different sectors by rooting our work in justice. We are bringing people from frontline and communities of color, union-members, environmental activists, people of faith, and young people together for both a moment: in the streets and at community forums, rallies, and vigils in more than 40 states across the country; and a movement: connecting the actions of Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice September 8th to building power at the local and state level, and from the mid-terms to 2020 and beyond. We won’t stop until we’ve won a 100% clean and renewable energy economy that protects our planet, livelihoods, and democracy.”
Angela Adrar, Executive Director, Climate Justice Alliance: “This is not the first time the Climate Justice Alliance and our communities march for Climate, Jobs and Justice or stand in solidarity with solutions for people on the frontline of climate disasters across the world. It will not be the last. Every time we rise to defend communities, our voice gets stronger, the movement gets bolder! With each step, people are awakening to a different way of living with each other and with the planet. We are paving the path to march to the sound of our ecological and cultural roots and with it putting forth the solutions that will protect all people and the planet. The time is upon us to act out of love and compassion for each other and our future; join us!”
David Turnbull, Strategic Communications Director, Oil Change International: “As our state burns around us, our leaders are hiding behind a smokescreen of action that is simply not up to the task of saving our climate. We’re demanding real climate leadership that stands up to the fossil fuel industry and keeps fossil fuels in the ground. Governor Brown has one final chance to show that leadership by announcing a managed phase out of oil and gas production here in California as the summit kicks off. If he needs some inspiration, he need only look to the streets full of marchers and communities around the world fighting fossil fuel extraction in their backyards to see what that real leadership looks like.”
Michael Brune, Executive Director, Sierra Club: “Today, people across the country are rising up for climate, jobs, and justice in their communities to fight back against Trump’s toxic agenda and to send a message to every politician that the time for action is now. Families living in the shadows of coal plants and oil refineries, losing homes and livelihoods to wildfires and extreme weather, and struggling to make a living wage are coming together because we know we don’t have time to waste. That’s why we’re rising with environmental justice leaders, labor unions, and partners and allies from Miami to San Francisco to Chicago to Big Stone Gap, Virginia and Laramie, Wyoming so we will be heard loud and clear now, in November, and in the months and years to come. We will take every opportunity to rise up together, united against Trump’s hate and fight for a 100% clean energy economy that leaves no one behind.”
Varshini Prakash, co-founder, Sunrise: “Our generation is fed up with a corrupt and complacent political establishment that time and again prioritizes the profits of fossil fuel CEOs over the safety and well-being of millions of people across the world. Sunrise is transforming young people’s outrage at witnessing a lifetime of inaction on climate change into grassroots political power and making clear to our leaders: take bold action to stop this crisis, our generation demands it and will not settle for anything less.”
Gladys Limon, Executive Director, California Environmental Justice Alliance (CEJA): “Climate change, economic inequality, the housing crisis, increased criminalization, attacks on immigrant communities — all these challenges are driven by systemic devaluation of the lives of people of color and choosing profit over people and the planet. Environmental justice communities are leading the way for all of California and the country. We are standing up to life destructive industries, from Big Oil to natural gas companies, that obstruct progress toward a healthy, sustainable and just society. On September 8th, we urge our decision-makers to follow our lead and stand for real climate leadership that does not bow to industry pressure, that goes beyond watered down policies, and rather meaningfully protects the health of our communities and embraces a life sustaining economy.”
Darryl Molina Sarmiento, Executive Director, Communities for a Better Environment: “We are rising up for climate, jobs, and justice because we are building power in 4 of the most impacted black and brown frontline communities in the state of California impacted by toxic facilities and the fossil fuel based extractive economy. In Richmond, East Oakland, Wilmington, and Southeast Los Angeles we are fighting the rampant expansion of toxic oil wells, refinery expansions, freeway expansion, ships with dirty tar sands oil, and expanding toxic facilities. From droughts, fires, oil spills, deadly air pollution, we’re seeing the impacts first hand and understand the urgency of climate action. We need real climate leadership from elected leaders instead of the constant denial of our communities’ reality on the ground. We need leadership to support and advance a just transition to a renewable equitable energy economy that centers grassroots frontline solutions.“
Juan Flores, Community Organizer, Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment: “In the Central Valley, low-income communities and communities of color are the most overburdened with air, water and soil pollution. Extreme methods of oil extraction, like fracking, play a key role in this devastating situation. The political atmosphere at a national level is so demoralizing for our communities, which is why it is so important to celebrate this success. Arvin community members were able to exert their political power, and win. While 300 foot buffer zones are not big enough, they are very significant for Kern County. It will take local victories like this one to move us away from extractive oil and gas practices. Communities in the Central Valley understand that in order for our state to be a real climate leader, we have to invest in clean, renewable energy.”
Estela Escoto, President of the Committee for a Better Arvin: “California needs to phase out fossil fuels because all communities deserve access to the benefits that renewable energy can bring to California. In the City of Arvin in the Central Valley, we live in a community that for many years has been one of the most polluted in the country. Our community’s victory against the oil industry is the result of many years of fight and sacrifice. The updated ordinance is a great success for us, but we will continue fighting for more until we achieve a better air quality for all the residents of our community. On September 8th, I’ll be in the streets marching with other residents from frontline communities like Arvin as we continue to demand real climate leadership to stand for clean air and clean energy so we can breathe easier.”
Leila Salazar-López, Executive Director of Amazon Watch: “Indigenous peoples and frontline communities are building real solutions to the climate crisis every day. We rise in solidarity with these climate leaders, and we rise for for a world in which indigenous rights are respected and forests and sacred territories are protected. To make such a world a reality, we must say no to new oil and gas extraction from California to the Amazon and begin a just transition to clean, renewable energy. Our futures depend on it.”
Mirian Cisneros, President of the Kichwa people of Sarayaku, Ecuadorian Amazon: “I come from where the forests, rivers, and mountains have life. I come from where human beings and Mother Earth live in harmony. I come from Kawsak Sacha, the living forest. I also come from a people that has fought for years and years against the threat of oil drilling. I am here in this large march with brothers and sisters from the whole planet because we understand that we have to leave fossil fuels in the ground in the Amazon rainforest—and everywhere. We are also here because we want the world to know that communities like ours have innovative solutions to climate change—like our Kawsak Sacha proposal—that will provide permanent protection to all forests and life in our ancestral territories. The world needs just and noble solutions like this one to confront climate change and respect indigenous rights to self-determination and autonomy. In this way, we can guarantee the survival of humankind and live in peace.”
Laura Muraida, Research and Communications Director, Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education (SCOPE): “On September 8th, I along with a delegation of South Los Angeles residents will be marching at the international People’s Climate March because as our state lauds itself for taking action on climate change, our communities continue to suffer as a result of oil drilling and extractive economies. We march to demand a just transition off dirty extraction like neighborhood oil drilling in Los Angeles and toward community solutions that protect the health and dignity of workers and residents. We march because climate change is exacerbating economic conditions in our community and our leaders must take real action to ensure that frontline communities like South LA are at the forefront of a thriving local economy.”
Guadalupe Casco, North Bay Organizing Project, Justice for the Environment Taskforce: “The October 2017 fires were a wake-up call; a call to action coming directly from mother earth. It is our responsibility to respond in unifying manner acting with respect to one another and the land on which we live. In order to build a stronger Sonoma County we must look beyond our county lines and come together at the Rise for Climate march to make an impact on our policies governing our interaction with our planet.”
Allen Hernandez, Executive Director, Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice (CCAEJ): “California needs a new vision for transportation and land-use planning that is truly climate resilient and prioritizes the health of our communities. On September 8th, we’ll be in San Francisco to Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice because we need a rapid transition to zero emission vehicles, starting with an aggressive effort to regulate and phase out dirty diesel trucks on our roads. We cannot allow corporate interest developers to keep ravaging our communities with highly polluting projects that do nothing but damage our children and health. We march for clean air, healthy communities and for our children and demand real climate leadership that advances strong land-use and transportation regulations that will clean up our air and protect our health.”
Carolina Martinez, Associate Director of Policy, Environmental Health Coalition: “California must re-shape our land-use planning to promote investments without displacement and move away from a car-centered culture. Communities across the state need a wider range of healthy, safe, reliable and zero emission transportation options, which must include massive investments in public transit, buses, and active transportation options to facilitate walking and biking. Transportation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in California. Emissions from cars and heavy trucks clog the lungs of communities living next to our state’s largest freeways, ports, rail yards and warehouses. On September 8th, we will rise to demand climate justice and transportation justice for the health of our communities.”
Gus Vallejo, IFPTE Local 21 President: “Public sector workers across the country are directly affected by climate change. We work on policy to decrease climate change, study the effects of sea rise, and design the sea walls. We are charged with providing clean water to our communities, and work on energy efficiency and conservation. As public sector workers, we are called to service because of our desire to serve public good, and the most vulnerable among us are our priority. Climate Change is a union issue.”
Osprey Orielle Lake, Founder and Executive Director of the Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) International: “As climate disruption increases globally, women are fervently rising up and speaking out to protect and defend the web of life. From the Standing Rock movement and pipelines resistance camps across North America – to struggles to protect the Boreal, Amazon, and Congo Basin forests – women are standing on the frontlines of global efforts to defend the land, water, and climate, and to revision a healthy world. From renewable energy initiatives, agro-ecology, to policy forums – women are working to change our current destructive and violent trajectory. It could not be more important to highlight how violence perpetrated against the Earth is directly connected to violence against women through exploitation and extractivism. We need new worldviews and social constructs of gender and racial equity; respect for human and Indigenous rights; and governance systems that respect the natural laws of Mother Earth. It is clear that this September the global community needs to address systems of oppression in an intersectional manner to move towards justice and real climate solutions.”