Activists delivered thousands of petitions to Governor Cuomo
NEW YORK, NY - A large crowd of New York climate leaders delivered thousands of petitions to Governor Cuomo, demanding he reject fossil fuel projects across the state.

Sponsoring organizations including Sane Energy Project, Resist Spectra, Food & Water Watch, New York Communities for Change, The Climate Mobilization NYC, NYPIRG, United For Action, 350Brooklyn, 350NYC, People's Climate Movement - New York, Democratic Socialists of America - NYC chapter, organized a rally outside Cuomo's Manhattan office on August 16, 2018, calling on him to stop fossil fuel infrastructure and shift New York to 100 percent renewable energy and delivered thousands of petitions to Governor Cuomo, urging him to be a true climate leader.

Following a months-long petition drive, a coalition of community, environmental, and social justice groups rallied outside the governor’s Midtown office. The rally featured multiple speakers, all urging Cuomo to reject fossil fuel projects. Following the rally, they delivered multiple boxes filled with over 40,000 petitions demanding an immediate halt the buildout of all oil and gas projects.

”Governor Cuomo’s recent visits to Puerto Rico to experience the devastation from climate change must be a clear wake-up call that we need an immediate halt to fossil fuel infrastructure in New York,” said Kim Fraczek, director of Sane Energy Project. “Our state must set the paramount example for the nation. We cannot continue to kick the can down the road on community-owned renewables, like the current VDER policy that makes community solar impossible to develop, or slip in more fracked gas projects. Time’s up, and we demand he act with urgency.”

The petition delivery is part of a larger campaign to increase pressure on Governor Cuomo ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit and builds momentum ahead of a massive march and rally – over 70 groups announced the New York Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice mobilization on September 6 ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit, urging Governor Cuomo and elected officials at all levels to move off fossil fuels.

“New Yorkers are demanding real climate leadership from Governor Cuomo. Today, we’re delivering thousands of petitions urging him to reject all fossil fuel projects. Voters know it’s time to move off fossil fuels. The question is whether Governor Cuomo will listen to his constituents” said Laura Shindell, organizer Food & Water Watch.

“The voices of the people in New York State are loud and clear on climate. We recognize the devastation of climate chaos and the hope of climate action towards a greener, fairer future. It’s concerning that Governor Cuomo is not demonstrating the climate leadership that the people are calling for,” said Patrick Houston, Climate and Inequality Campaigns Organizer of New York Communities for Change.

“A warming planet has dire consequences. Students like myself will be the generation to deal with climate damages from actions, or inactions, taken today. We students are calling for a future powered 100% by renewable energy, and we call on Governor Cuomo to help New York break its addiction to fossil fuels today,” said Tom Wendol, NYPIRG Board of Directors member and Queens College student.

“Governor Cuomo needs to step up now to take meaningful action on climate change and commit to signing the #NoFossilFuelMoney Pledge,” said Dee Aherne of 350NYC’s Steering Committee. “He must commit to making NYS a leader in combating climate chaos. The spotlight is on the corruption and double-talk coming out of the Cuomo administration and Cuomo’s failure to support climate legislation speaks volumes. Time is running out for the planet. New York needs to transition to 100% renewable energy now and stop all fossil fuel infrastructure. Voters will judge the governor’s legacy on climate by his actions not his slick TV ads.”

“New Yorkers overwhelmingly support decisive action to decelerate climate change”, said Sara Gronim, Co-leader of 350Brooklyn. “We know how to do it. And we know time is running out. What we don’t have yet is bold, genuinely committed leadership. We don’t need more talk from Governor Cuomo, more speeches, more press releases. What we need is for Governor Cuomo to act right now: stop all new fossil fuel projects and build a new economy around renewable energy accessible to all.”

“Governor Cuomo commissioned an Independent Risk Assessment, due to years of public outcry, that concluded what we have proved with years of studies and expert testimony -- Our community's public safety is threatened with Spectra’s dangerous high-pressure gas pipelines next to decaying Indian Point Nuclear Plant” said Tina Bongar, a resident of Peekskill, NY living just shy of the Spectra AIM Pipeline, and Coordinator of Resist Spectra, a local direct action group. “New York City is in the 50 mile evacuation radius of Indian Point, so this isn't just our community on the front lines. The people of New York are voters, and we demand Governor Cuomo fulfill our state's authority and tell the Department of Public Service to work with the Pipeline Safety and Hazardous Materials Administration (PHMSA) to shut off the gas.”Rally and Petition Delivery: Cuomo, Be a Climate Leader!

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