Hundreds turn out in Minneapolis for march opposing Trump administration’s policies on climate

Local demonstrators gathered to protest Trump’s policies.

By Miguel Otárola

Hundreds of demonstrators marched to address climate change and decry the Trump administration’s environmental actions on an overcast Saturday afternoon in Minneapolis.

The People’s Climate Solidarity March started outside the U.S. Courthouse in downtown Minneapolis, ambled across the Stone Arch Bridge and ended at Father Hennepin Bluff Park. It was planned by a coalition of environmental advocacy groups in support of a similar march in Washington, D.C., which coincided with President Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office. Other demonstrations were planned for Saturday in Duluth, Rochester, Winona and New London.

It also came on the heels of the larger March for Science, which brought out more than 10,000 people to the State Capitol in St. Paul last week.

“We’re seeing a lot of overlap for who is turning out for both,” said Katie Siegner with Climate Generation, one of the organizers of Saturday’s march.

Minneapolis police estimated up to 600 demonstrators at the beginning of the march around 3 p.m., although more people joined in as it continued.

Zoe Redfern-Hall, a senior at Avalon Charter School in St. Paul, addressed the crowd before the march, urging people to band together and express their displeasure with federal actions on climate.

“This is the world we’re all inheriting right now,” Redfern-Hall said. “But maybe we can change our actions for a better today and for all the tomorrows we all deserve.”

Other speakers argued that other social and economic issues, including poverty, workers rights and Islamophobia, are affected by climate change. A statement of support by Sen. Amy Klobuchar was read.

Just this month, Trump’s administration has pushed to end Barack Obama’s climate policy and expand offshore drilling and access to fossil fuels.

On Friday evening, the Environmental Protection Agency announced it would be renovating its website and began removing detailed climate data that had been available online.

Marchers both young and old hoisted handmade signs Saturday expressing their support for policies protecting the environment and anger with Trump’s past statements regarding climate change.

“There is no Planet B,” several signs read. “Science is not an alternative fact,” read another. One simply stated, “Denial is Deadly.”

Faye Otero of Plymouth, was at the march with her 7-year-old son Will and a friend. She said this is one of a couple of marches she has attended since Trump’s inauguration.

“I feel like we’re going in the wrong direction with the current administration,” Otero said. “We have to take action that’s almost exactly the opposite of everything they want to do.”

Several large-scale demonstrations have been organized this year, including one in March supporting Trump’s presidency. Others have focused on undocumented immigrants, women’s rights and refugees.

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