Philadelphia News & Search
About 2,000 activists gathered at City Hall’s Dilworth Plaza Saturday to protest President Trump’s climate policies and urge renewed efforts to combat global warming. It was one of a number of rallies nationwide voicing opposition to Trump’s agenda on the environment.
After rallying at the plaza, the protesters marched westbound into a section of Center City where traffic has already been disrupted by the NFL draft.
The rally in Philadelphia was dubbed “Philly With Standing Rock,” in recognition of the Standing Rock Sioux of North Dakota and their long opposition to a planned oil pipeline there. The protest was aimed at highlighting the damaging consequences of the Trump administration’s support of the coal and oil industries on Native Americans and other minorities, said event organizer, Jed Laucharoen.
“Basically, the point is for a lot of people to get together in this space and show resistance to the current administration’s offensive moves on the environment and poor communities,” said Laucharoen. ”They are the most affected by these policies.”
“I’m here to raise awareness about the issues facing the planet, and to let people know what is going on,” said Dottie Kane of Downingtown, who was among the crowd gathered on an unseasonably warm, very humid April day. Temperatures were in the low 80’s by early afternoon, with National Weather Service forecasting a high of 88 degrees. (The record high for April 29 is 90 degrees, set in 1974, according to Stormfax.com.)
Similar rallies in Washington, D.C., where organizers said they were planning for 450 busloads Saturday, and other cities were expected to draw about 100,000 people nationwide.
They follow a series of massive rallies in Philadelphia and around the country a week ago, also to protest the administration’s environmental policies. In what was called the “March for Science,” about 10,000 demonstrators marched from City Hall to Penn’s Landing to call for government policies to reduce greenhouse gases and head off global warming.
In January, shortly after he took office, Trump signed executive orders advancing construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline, a 1,179-mile project intended to bring tar-sands oil from Alberta south into the United States, and the Dakota Access Pipeline, a 1,100-mile project for transporting Dakota shale oil south. Those two actions galvanized climate activists and are providing much of the energy driving Saturday’s protests.
The Dakota Access Pipeline is the project of Energy Transfer partners, former parent company of Newtown Square-based Sunoco Logistics, which operates a pipeline and terminal network. The two companies merged on Friday.
Philadelphia News & Search