“I’ve been participating in the United Nations climate negotiations since 1999,” said Native American environmental activist Tom Goldtooth. “We’ve seen a corporate takeover of their negotiations and what we see is business as usual”
By Kiki Intarasuwan
Published at 9:44 AM PDT on Sep 8, 2018 | Updated at 10:42 AM PDT on Sep 10, 2018
Thousands of activists marched Saturday morning in San Francisco in what organizers call “the largest climate march the West Coast has ever seen” to demand action against climate change from elected officials.
Supporters with “Rise for Climate, Jobs & Justice” walked from Embarcadero Plaza on Market Street to Civic Center where organizers held a rally with resource centers and music.
Demonstrators banged drums, sang and hoisted signs that said “Rise for climate justice” and “Not a penny more for dirty energy.” They called for politicians to spearhead a transition to 100 percent renewable energy.
“We are calling all of humanity – believers or not – to come together, embrace each other because our survival depends on it, ” Rev. Ambrose Carroll of the Green Church in Berkeley said at the rally Saturday.
Organizers say they want to make climate change “a part of the national dialogue and beyond.” The event is being held ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, Sept. 12-14, where leaders from all over the world will gather and celebrate the achievements of states, regions, cities, companies, investors and citizens with respect to climate action.
Miya Yoshitani, the Executive Director of Asian Pacific Environmental Network, said there are over 900 events in 90 countries taking place.
The purpose of Saturday’s event is to send a message to leaders and officials attending the Global Climate Summit that “we need real community-led solutions to climate change. We need solutions that are not profit driven.”
California’s Gov. Jerry Brown proposed the summit after President Donald Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Paris climate agreement.
The upcoming summit has received criticism from environmental activists for being corporate friendly and for-profit.
“I’ve been participating in the United Nations climate negotiations since 1999,” said Native American environmental activist Tom Goldtooth. “We’ve seen a corporate takeover of their negotiations and what we see is business as usual.”
Meanwhile, Gov. Brown on Saturday signed a bill to block Trump administration’s expansion of federal offshore oil drilling along California’s coast. Brown also announced the state’s opposition to the federal government’s plan to expand oil drilling on public lands in California.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.