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'Thousands' of students to protest as Youth Climate Strike returns to MN

The Minnesota students will join their counterparts around the world on Sept. 20.

For the second time this year, Minnesota students are planning to join a worldwide demonstration aimed at fighting climate change.

The Youth Climate Strike, a movement that has spread to over 40 countries around the world, is calling on elected leaders to take the problem seriously — and enact meaningful policy to help reverse it.

The strike is scheduled for 11:30 AM to 2 PM on Friday, Sept. 20.

In Minnesota, protesters will meet at the Western Sculpture Garden in St. Paul, and then move the short distance to the Capitol for a rally, according to a news release from Minnesota Youth Climate Strike (MYCS).

In the release, the group takes Minnesota politicians to task, saying they have "failed to prioritize — and in some cases, even acknowledge — climate change."

"Our very own Governor is no different," the group adds, going on to mention Line 3 — a proposed pipeline project that would cut through part of northern Minnesota.

The release did not elaborate on its mention of Gov. Tim Walz, whose administration renewed the state's legal challenge to Line 3 earlier this year.

MYCS also lays out a list of demands for the state's leaders, saying they "will not settle for any action that fails to recognize the extent of this crisis":

Among those demands:

  • Enact powerful legislation to combat climate change on local and state levels in Minnesota.
  • Declare a statewide emergency on climate.
  • All politicians in Minnesota public offices must refuse campaign funds from the fossil fuel industry.
  • Safe removal and a halt on construction of Line 3 and similar pipelines
  • Declare the climate crisis to be a local, state, and national emergency 

MYCS says the Sept. 20 rally is "poised to have over 3,000 attendees," and describes the event as "one of the 20 flagship strikes nationwide."

This is a followup to an earlier Youth Climate Strike in March; in Minnesota, there were rallies in St. Paul, Rochester and Duluth.

The strike movement was inspired by the efforts of Swedish schoolgirl Greta Thunberg, whose weekly "school strike for climate" prompted similar demonstrations across Europe and is now going global.

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