Global climate strike

By Rob Picheta, Jessie Yeung, Meg Wagner and Fernando Alfonso III, CNN

Updated 7:59 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019
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6:40 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

Greta Thunberg: "Why should we study for a future that is being taken away from us?"

From CNN's Laura Ly

Greta Thunberg spoke at the climate strike in New York City Friday, arriving on stage at a rally in Battery Park to cheers of “Greta! Greta!” 

Thunberg began by listing off numbers of participants in the climate strike around the world, stating that at least 250,000 people in New York City joined roughly four million others striking worldwide. CNN has not verified these numbers. 

“It’s just not the young people’s house. We all live here. It affects all of us,” Thunberg said. “Why should we study for a future that is being taken away from us? That is being stolen for profit? Some people say we should study to become climate scientists or politicians, so that we can, in the future, solve the climate crisis. But by then, it will be too late. We need to do this now.” 

Watch here:

6:12 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

Meet the students who helped 1.1 million others skip school the right way for the climate strike

From CNN's Melissa Mahtani

New York's 1.1 million students owe a big thanks to Alexandria Villaseñor and Xiye Bastida who were instrumental in making sure they could attend Friday's climate strike.

Villaseñor and Bastida were crucial in petitioning the Department of Education (DOE) to allow students to attend the protest without being penalized for missing class.

"We got 15 council members to write a letter to the DOE and after a lot of pressure, we got amnesty for the 1.1 million students in the public school system," Bastida told CNN Friday afternoon.

See the full interview with Bastida and Villaseñor below:

4:45 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

SOON: Activist Greta Thunberg will speak in New York

Activist Greta Thunberg is expected to speak in New York City around 5 p.m. ET, capping off a day of worldwide protests calling for "climate justice."

Thunberg made headlines after she sailed across the Atlantic in zero-emissions yacht to speak at the UN Climate Action Summit on September 23.


3:28 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

Aerial photo shows New York's streets flooded with protesters

From CNN's Alisha Ebrahimji

A photo taken from the 22nd floor of a New York City high-rise shows the immense size of the protest calling for "climate justice" to be an ethical obligation and not just an environmental issue.

The photo was taken from 45 Broadway, near Broadway and Exchange Place.

Check out the photo below:

Katie/ @RDlenix
Katie/ @RDlenix

3:13 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

Some of the best protest signs from the climate strike in New York

From CNN's Julia Vargas Jones

CNN reporter Julia Vargas Jones has been on the ground in New York City capturing photos from the protests.

"I think this guy gets the mixed-media award," Jones tweeted, along with a photo of a man holding a fake piece of melting ice.

Here are some photos below:

3:11 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

She's "not a morning person" but still got up early to strike in California

From CNN's Alisha Ebrahimji

Laura Copan, a graduate student at Loyola Marymount University, said she went to a smaller, local strike rather than the bigger one in downtown Los Angeles today.

“It made me happy to see that local people care," she told CNN.

She added: "The protest was peaceful and a great way to start my morning. That says a lot because I'm not a morning person!"

Here's a look at the rally:

3:04 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

She went to the Austin protest to support young leaders

From CNN's Alisha Ebrahimji

Janet Janssen attended today's strike in Austin, Texas tat the Texas State Capitol.

She told CNN she wanted to support the young people that are fighting for the future of the planet.

“I’ve seen some of the European cities and amazed so many turned out,” she said. “I think the young people are leading on this issue.”

Janssen said it’s time everyone get involved — and ask elected leaders to do the same.

“People have more power than they think if they collectively stand together and make their voices heard,” she said.

Here's what the Austin protest looked like: 

1:55 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

This is the scene in New York City

Students are marching in New York City as part of today's global climate strike.

The city's 1.1 million students were allowed to skip school today after the city announced it would not penalize public school students joining the strike — but made it clear that the students did need parental consent.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted he supported the move: "New York City stands with our young people. They're our conscience."

Here's a look at the march in New York City:

Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Spencer Platt/Getty Images
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

1:03 p.m. ET, September 20, 2019

Climate strikes on the East Coast have started. Here's what they look like.

Student climate strikes in cities across the US's East Coast have begun. Here's a look at some of scenes:



Portland, Maine:

Syracuse, New York: