Sept. 10–Environmental activists turned out in Cobleskill on Saturday in solidarity with “Rise for the Climate” marches held in cities around the world.
The demonstrations were organized to call attention to the Global Climate Action Summit to be attended by politicians and business leaders this week in California. Its sponsors include the United Nations, Facebook and Google.
Thousands of people protested in Paris, days after France’s environment minister resigned over what he considered insufficient progress on climate issues and clean energy. The San Francisco march called for California governor Jerry Brown to end fossil fuel extraction in the state. It attracted about 30,000 people, according to organizers.
About 45 Cobleskill area residents gathered at Veterans Memorial Center Park, bringing signs and giant papier mache puppets of “Mother Earth” and a gas-masked Lady Liberty. Demonstrators who spoke to The Daily Star said that they wanted to join a movement that demanded concrete plans for weaning the country, or the state, off of fossil fuels.
“This is an addiction, and we have to get rid of it because it’s killing us,” said Joyce St. George, a Democrat running for State Senate in District 51, before walking down from her Main Street office to meet with the demonstrators.
St. George said that if elected she would support state legislation similar to the federal Off Fossil Fuels for a Better Future Act, which would place a moratorium on new fossil fuel projects and transition electricity and most transportation to renewable energy sources by 2035. She also said she would work to create more local training programs for jobs in renewable energy, and that she is building a coalition with other democratic candidates in support of clean energy.
“You have to get us all in, otherwise you can’t break the culture,” she said.
“There are things going on at the state and municipal level and we don’t have to wait for Washington,” said former SUNY Albany professor Glenn Sanders.
“It’s all the more urgent with Trump in office,” said Mike Shuster of Sharon Springs.
California passed legislation at the end of August that would phase out fossil fuels by 2045 if approved by the governor.
Teenagers Emma Trahan and Sophia Rogers traveled from the Canajoharie area to take part in the local demonstration. Trahan, 17, said that she organized the Cobleskill “March for our Lives” rally for gun control in March.
Erin Jerome, staff writer, may be reached at email@example.com or (607) 441-7221. Follow her at @DS_ErinJ on Twitter.
(c)2018 The Daily Star (Oneonta, N.Y.)
Visit The Daily Star (Oneonta, N.Y.) at www.thedailystar.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.