Members of environmental activism group Greenpeace blocked fossil fuels from passing through a popular thoroughfare in Texas on Thursday. By taking this action, they hope Democratic presidential candidates will be forced to adopt more progressive approaches to reduce the nation’s dependence on nonrenewable energy sources.
According to Greenpeace posts on Twitter, about two dozen individuals climbed the bridge to create a blockade at the Fred Hartman Bridge in Baytown, Texas, early Thursday morning.
Commons Dreams said that about 700,000 barrels of oil travel across the bridge every day, which Greenpeace claimed would increase to about 2 million barrels of oil daily if current administration plans to ramp up oil production continue.
“We’re in a climate emergency created by fossil fuel CEOs and made worse by Trump. We can either take bold action to combat the climate crisis today or suffer the consequences — more floods, more mega-storms, and more fires — for years to come,” Greenpeace USA Executive Director Annie Leonard said in a statement, per Common Dreams.
According to the Common Dreams report, the protesters said they will remain in place, blocking what they said was the transport of all oil and gas, for 24 hours in an attempt to get leaders to support a swift transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy options.
A debate between the remaining Democratic Party’s candidates for the presidency will air tonight (Thursday) on ABC in an event that will take place in Houston, Texas.
As we hang here, the Democratic candidates are getting ready for the #DemDebates just a few hours from now here in Houston.— Greenpeace USA (@greenpeaceusa) September 12, 2019
We challenge every candidate on stage tonight to promise to hold the fossil fuel industry accountable if they become president. #PeopleVsOil pic.twitter.com/k0Qwl0zWxl
Per Common Dreams, Mike Herbert, a Greenpeace climber on the Fred Hartman Bridge, said in a pointed statement to the Democratic presidential hopefuls that there was no “middle ground” on the issue of climate change. The bridge-climbing man asked the candidates if they would support the Green New Deal, a broad policy directive championed by progressive Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. The initiative aims at reducing U.S. dependence on fossil fuels in order to secure a transition to potentially cleaner, renewable energy sources.
Herbert continued by asking the candidates if they would rather, instead, side with the “corrupt billionaires” who he argued are destroying the planet in order to secure a profit for themselves.
According to a previous report from The Inquisitr, current Republican President Donald Trump’s environmental policies, which have often focused on deregulating industries, have caused concern among climate scientists about their permanent impacts to the environment.
“He is locking in permanent, irreversible damage to our environment through his irresponsible environmental policies, including his efforts to block progress on climate change,” Micheal E. Mann, a distinguished professor at Penn State University, said per the previous Inquisitr report.
Mann warned that once the world passes significant thresholds — mainly the melting of major ice sheets — that there is no going back to the present-day climate.
The president, meanwhile, reportedly skipped a meeting on climate change at the international G7 summit in June, per The Inquisitr.