As protests continue around the world over George Floyd’s murder, black climate activists have shared their stories and suggestions with news outlets.

Sam Grant is executive director of MN350.org, the Minnesota affiliate of the international climate activist group 350.org, spoke to the New York Times about climate groups’ support of the protests and many that have spoken out in support of protestors, “It’s not been the norm that mainstream environmental organizations have ever had our backs,” he told the Times. He also said that its’ important that people see connections between the killing of George Floyd and the climate crisis.

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“Police violence is an aspect of a broader pattern of structural violence, which the climate crisis is a manifestation of,” Grant said. “Healing structural violence is actually in the best interest of all human beings.”

Heather McGhee is a senior fellow at Demos, a nonpartisan research and advocacy group, told the Times that climate groups should create and carry out anti-racist programs. “It’s essential to have anti-racism baked into the goals that even white-led organizations are pursuing because both political racism and environmental racism are drivers of our excess pollution and climate denialism,” she said.

Ayana Elizabeth Johnson is a marine biologist, policy advisor and founder and CEO of the consultancy Ocean Collectiv. She wrote an opinion article in the Washington Post outlining how racism detracts her from essential climate work and our collective need to address racism in order to make progress on climate change. “People of color disproportionately bear climate impacts, from storms to heat waves to pollution. Fossil-fueled power plants and refineries are disproportionately located in black neighborhoods, leading to poor air quality and putting people at higher risk for coronavirus. Such issues are finally being covered in the news media more fully,” she wrote.

Here’s what you can do:

Many organizations like Black Lives Matter, Color of Change, and the NAACP are working to empower black Americans and achieve justice for those impacted by racist systems.

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Also, remember to register to vote if you haven’t already. This is one of the simplest ways to make your voice heard as a citizen. Here are some resources for you:

Places to donate:

Text or Call:

  • Text “JUSTICE” To 668366
  • Text “FLOYD” To 55156
  • Text “ENOUGH” To 55156
  • Call Minneapolis Mayor’s Office, Jacob Frey at 612-673-2100
  • Call Minneapolis District Attorney, Mike Freeman at 612-348-5550 or email [email protected]

Leave a message for them demanding that all 4 officers involved including Derek Chauvin (Badge #1087) and Tou Thao (Badge #7162) be arrested for the Murder of George Floyd.

Petitions to Sign:

For a more extensive resource list, please see the collection put together by Black Lives Matter.

Through this grief and anger, we must unite and work together to create the change we want to see. Let’s make sure no black child has to ever say these heartbreaking words ever again. 

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If you’re attending a protest, please be safe and careful and maintain social distancing, if possible.

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