New York, NY — Two days after landing in New York City, Greta Thunberg joined Fridays for Future – New York City for a climate strike outside the United Nations, her first strike in the United States. Youth strikers began in Ralph Bunche Park around 10am, before leading a march of over 1000 participants for a rally and speak-out in Dag Hammarskjold Plaza, holding the space for hours.
This comes ahead of the September 20th massive Global Climate Strikes, the UNGA, and a week for climate action from Sept 20-28 happening across the US and around the world. At today’s Strike, the crowd sang and chanted, with young leaders sharing personal stories, igniting the multigenerational and multiracial movement for climate justice.
“We’re out here striking because we don’t have an option left. We’re fighting for no more fossil fuels, a just transition for frontline communities, and to hold fossil fuel executives accountable. We’re out here fighting and we won’t stop fighting until we get our demands met,” said Shiv Soin, 18 year-old organizer with the September 20th march.
New York City youth strikers are demanding decision-makers and elected officials at all levels — from the United Nations and world governments to local elected officials and educators — heed the demands of: (1) no fossil fuels; (2) a just transition to 100% renewables; (3) holding polluters accountable for the climate crisis.
In New York City, the strike on September 20th will kick-off at 12pm at Foley Square, with a march and rally toward Battery Park featuring speakers and performers around 4pm.
Youth in the New York City have been striking outside the UN and across the City for 38 weeks. The youth climate movement in the US is not new, and is now a catalyst demanding climate action toward COP25 and 2020. Youth climate activism in the US has a rich history, from the fight against the Keystone XL pipeline and the fossil fuel divestment movement to leading the massive Peoples Climate March in 2014.
“Today’s strike was so incredibly energizing. On September 20th, I’m striking for my community and those communities who are being pushed out of our neighborhoods because of environmental racism,” said Jade Lozada, 17 year-old organizer with the youth-led strikes.
In New York, action includes stopping the Williams fracked gas pipeline and all fossil fuel projects, full divestment of New York State’s pension fund, implementing the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (CLCPA), holding Big Oil companies accountable through lawsuits and litigation, and more.
“Today’s strike was the first of many in preparation for September 20th. On that day, we will join forces with Greta to ask for justice for those affected by the hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters that have affected millions of people, and to ask that world leaders unite to put an end to this suffering,” said Alessandro Dal Bon, 15 year-old organizer with Fridays For Future.
To date, over 70 local New York City organizations have officially endorsed the Climate Strike, including youth groups, climate organizations, unions, faith groups, and more. Today’s strike comes ahead of the first in a series of art builds happening this weekend at the Mayday Space.
NOTES TO THE EDITOR:
Contact: Lindsay Meiman, [email protected], (347) 460-9082
Sarmishta Govindhan, [email protected], (609) 649-4047
A diverse group of youth climate activists are available for in-person and telephonic interviews in the lead-up to September 20th and beyond.
For more information on the September 20th #ClimateStrike, visit: strikewithus.org