NEW YORK (September 15, 2014) – Members of the national labor-environmental partnership the BlueGreen Alliance are strongly supporting—and will be taking part in—the historic People’s Climate March scheduled for September 21 in New York City. National and local unions are working in tandem with environmental organizations to demonstrate the importance of taking action to address climate change in the U.S. and worldwide, and to create quality jobs and protect the environment and our communities.
“We’re proud to stand with our partners in the labor and economic justice movements at the People’s Climate March,” said Michael Brune, Sierra Club executive director. “Moving to a clean energy economy means more, quality American jobs and stronger working families. By working together, we can ensure cleaner air and water, healthier communities, and economic prosperity for all Americans.”
“Working families and their communities are among those who will bear the brunt of the impacts of climate change,” said Mary Kay Henry, International President of SEIU. “We’ve joined the march so that world leaders will hear the voices of working people everywhere who need action on climate change now for the health of their families, their communities, and economies.”
The People’s Climate March will take place two days before President Obama and world leaders are scheduled to participate in the United Nations Climate Summit in New York City. On September 21, events will take place around the world, from London to Delhi, making this a truly global demonstration.
“The work of our more than 190,000 members every day in transit systems across North America is helping to reduce the carbon pollution that is driving climate change,” said Amalgamated Transit Union International President Larry Hanley. “The ATU supports this effort and will be there in force to show world leaders that transit workers care deeply about this vital issue.”
“Climate change is a problem for all of us, which is why such broad and diverse bands of people will be joining together to call for global action,” said Peter Lehner, NRDC executive director. “Only by working together can we build the political support to ensure world leaders understand how critical it is to address this worldwide health and economic threat today.”
The March has already brought together hundreds of partner organizations from across New York City and around the world representing labor, social justice and environmental justice groups, climate campaigns, immigrant rights groups, and more. Organizers aim to make the People’s Climate March the largest march for climate action in world history.
“This march is an important leadership moment. Our nation is demanding action on climate disruption, and young people care tremendously about the climate crises. When our grandchildren look back on this time and ask, “Which side were you on?” the answer will be that together we were leading the fight for our climate, our democracy, and for a fair and just economy that works for us all,” said Communications Workers of America President Larry Cohen.
The transition to a clean energy economy will provide a major boost to workers and the broader economy. Projections show that clean technology and investment in more sustainable communities can be worth more than $5 trillion. Clean energy technologies and climate mitigation and resiliency efforts benefit workers and their communities by making the economy more just and sustainable. These efforts will put manufacturing and construction industries back to work through investments in energy efficiency, clean energy technologies, and infrastructure.
“We do not have to choose between good jobs and a clean environment; we can and must have both,” said Kim Glas, Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance. “The People’s Climate March is a watershed moment for our country and we’re proud that the BlueGreen Alliance and our member organizations are working so hard to make sure that moment happens.”
The United Nations Climate Summit begins the countdown to the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, where world leaders are expected to sign a new international climate treaty.