SALT LAKE CITY — Marching around the Utah State Capitol on one of the most smoggy days of the season, hundreds demanded political leaders take action to combat climate change.
Carrying signs and chanting, the group — mostly students — marched up and down floors of the Capitol building before ending up in front of Governor Gary Herbert’s office where Utah Highway Patrol officers stood guard. Two students were allowed in to present thousands of petitions calling for public lands protection and more work to reverse harmful effects of climate change.
“Two days ago we had the worst air quality in the country,” Raquel Juarez, one of the demonstrators who met with governor’s staffers, told FOX 13 as she left the office. “We are seeing in the next 10 years, the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] report says we have 10 years to change to cut down greenhouse gases to keep us from complete climate disaster, more hurricanes, more fires, more flooding. Trillions lost. We have that power to change that if we want to.”
The Utah Highway Patrol estimates around 300 participated in the Capitol Hill protest. Governor Herbert’s office did not immediately have a comment on the demonstration.