OGDEN — Northern Utah youth will be marching in defense of the planet — and humanity’s existence — for the third time in 2019.
On Friday, the same local organizers of the previous two Ogden demonstrations will be leading another youth climate strike and march, gathering at Union Station at noon and proceeding east on 25th Street to the Ogden Municipal Building. The event is expected to last until 1:30 p.m.
Anyone who wishes to participate is invited to attend, said Kyia Hill, a Weber State alum who is one of the organizers of the event.
While everyone is welcome, youth have been at the helm of the organizing.
“This is ... 100% a youth-led movement” at both the local and national levels, Hill said.
Unlike the previous two demonstrations, which were part of global youth climate strikes, this strike is part of a national event, organized by local branch of the Sunrise Movement, which is “building an army of young people to make climate change an urgent priority across America,” the movement’s website says.
This demonstration also has some specific goals.
At the national level, Sunrise is pushing for the passage of the Green New Deal, which the movement describes on its website as “a 10-year plan to mobilize every aspect of American society to 100% clean energy by 2030, a guaranteed living-wage job for anyone who needs one, and a just transition for both workers and frontline communities.”
At the local level, Sunrise Ogden and other local environmental groups have been pushing for the Ogden City Council to adopt a resolution establishing a city-wide goal to transition to net-100% renewable energy by 2030.
But that won’t be a demand of the protest Friday because the council voted 5-2 to adopt that resolution at their meeting Tuesday evening.
Hill said that participants in the demonstration will likely make signs and write a statement thanking the council for its passage of the resolution.
The council’s adoption of resolution makes Ogden eligible to participate in a state process to move toward renewable energy that is outlined in the Community Renewable Energy Act, though the resolution does not commit the city to participate.
Also know as House Bill 411, the act was passed during the 2019 general session of the state Legislature and sponsored by Republican Representative Stephen Handy from Layton.
More than 300 are expected to participate in the demonstration on Friday, Hill said.
At least 200 participated in the most recent strike on Sept. 20, though some at the event estimated that as many as 300 youth and adults marched and attended the rally, Hill said.
Organizers anticipate this growth in participation largely due to the increasing involvement of Utah High School Democrats clubs at Northern Utah high schools, she said.
Club leaders at Ogden High School in particular have reached out to their counterparts at other high schools in the region, inviting them to attend, Hill said.
Previously, the climate strikes have been largely comprised of students at DaVinci Academy, a charter school in Ogden, and Weber State students and alumni, Hill said, as well as some adult supporters.
High school groups are proactively reaching out to school administrators before the strike, arranging for parent permission slips so that they can miss school without getting in trouble, Hill said.