WASHINGTON --- Environmental activists gathered in the nation's capitol today for what is being called one of the largest global warming protests in history.
The AP said "several thousand" climate change activists came together in six inches of snow at one of the capitol’s oldest coal-fired power plants, protesting the use of unfiltered coal and demanding that legislators tighten environmental restrictions. Coal is responsible for releasing large amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, which is why many--like former vice president Al Gore--say all coal plants should include carbon capture technology.
The event was organized by Greenpeace and the Rainforest Action Network and has been endorsed by more than 100 organizations. Among those in attendance was Dr. James Hansen, the NASA scientist whose recent calls for civil disobedience have proven controversial. Hansen has publicized the event by speaking in a short video posted on YouTube and at capitolclimateaction.org, in which he encourages people to come out to the protest and make their voices heard.
“I think it’s time that we take a stand on global warming,” Hansen says in the video. “We need to send a message to congress and the president that we want them to take the actions that are needed to preserve climate for young people and future generations and all life on the planet.”
According to Hansen, coal is “the biggest source of carbon” and must be phased out for the preservation of our environment. In addition, Greenpeace has written that "coal is the country's biggest source of global warming pollution" and that "burning coal cuts short at least 24,000 lives in the U.S. annually."
Although much of D.C. was closed down due to the snowy weather, the protesters nevertheless marched on, chanting “Clean coal is a dirty lie.”
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