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A new weapon in the war against Climate Change. How moderates and radicals are joining forces

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New York Climate marches show that conflicting ideologies are not enough to stop determined environmentalists

New York saw the largest climate-related march ever, where hundreds of thousands participated before the United Nations held a summit on climate change. The next day, hundreds were arrested in Manhattan as part of a demonstration against Wall Street, which blames capitalism and financial institutions for climate change.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
9/29/2014 (7 years ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Climate Change, International, New York, U.N., Summit

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - These two protests have revealed a startling new trend among environmentalist groups, to band together despite ideological differences between groups.

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Supporters, organizers, and participants said that the massive march showed that the divide is closing. As more people wake up to the reality of the climate crisis, radical and moderate activist are seeing a chance to band together to get real reform passed.

"The public is all over the place in its awareness of climate change, so the march was for those people," said Sandra Steingraber, an activist and professor at Ithaca College.

"And then there are the people who have accepted climate change as a fact long ago and are really ready to carry a manifesto to those who are responsible and nail it to their doors," she said, referring to the Wall Street protesters.

Unlike the animal rights movement which divided in the 1960s into PETA and the Animal Liberation Front, or the green movement which divided more recently, environmental groups are uniting.

The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is one of the largest green environmental groups in the nation, but routinely works with the natural gas industry to lower methane emissions, actions which get it criticized by other environmental groups.

EDF director Fred Krupp met with executives from the oil and gas industry at the U.N. last week, and praised their voluntary measures to reduce pollution.

"We're fairly well known for working with nontraditional folks," said Keith Gaby, the EDF's climate communications director. "We also protest and sue companies. We might not block traffic on Wall Street, but we might sue Wall Street."

The environmental march in Manhattan did not have any such divisions.

"It was really organized in a new way for the climate movement," said May Boeve, the executive director of 350.org, a national environmental group. "It was a coming together of partners that all have a stake in combating climate change but who haven't always worked side by side. That collaboration is only going to gain momentum."

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