Global Citizen is a community of people like you

People who want to learn about and take action on the world’s biggest challenges. Extreme poverty ends with you.

Vlad Tchompalov / Unsplash
Environment

Climate Protesters Created Largest Street Mural Ever, Thanks to Some Fearless Grandmas


Why Global Citizens Should Care
Climate change affects communities communities across the globe — and those living in poverty are most vulnerable. Grassroots efforts like these are holding governments accountable and demanding progress. Join us in taking action on this issue here.

Demonstrators gathered in San Francisco, California, over the weekend to create what organizers are calling largest street mural ever as part of a protest against climate change inaction, Grist reports.

More than 3,000 people came together to take part in the initiative to call for progress, including a troop of bold grandmothers.

The protesters, who painted murals that depicted solutions to combat climate change, did not have a permit to paint the streets, but a group of Indigenous-led grandmothers, the Society of Fearless Grandmothers, stalled police by blocking off the roads and made sure no one was arrested during the event.

Take Action: Ensure All Communities Can Withstand Climate Disaster

The 2,500-by-50-foot artwork spans five blocks and includes more than 50 individual murals, made with clay, tempera paint, and charcoal from areas impacted by recent wildfires, depicting climate crises and community-proposed solutions. Because the paintings are made from natural materials, they are not permanent or damaging.

The giant paintings captured the attention of many, but were not the only grassroots climate action to take place recently. The massive mural was part of a larger initiative called Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice Mobilization, which motivated marches around the world last week, reports Grist. Organized by nonprofit 350.org, marches took place in 91 countries.

"You have to believe in a little magic and imagination to build the future that we want," Cata Elisabeth-Romo, one of the event's coordinators, told Grist.

Organized by more than 50 community groups, the mural painting featured designs by local artists and was open to public participation. Participants contributing to the mural were asked to portray "one solution to climate change and injustice in [their] community," reports the San Francisco Examiner.

A mural, designed by artist Nityalila Saulo for one of the participating community groups, Interfaith Contingent, depicts the word "Live" encircled by 2,000 footprints. The work is meant to inspire people to think deeply about and value the choices they make every day, Saulo wrote on Instagram, and to encourage people "to live simply so that others may simply live."

Through their art, activists demanded an end to fossil fuels and environmental and racial justice.

The demonstration in Civic Center Plaza comes just ahead of the Global Climate Action Summit, which set to take place in San Francisco on Wednesday. The summit, organized by California Governor Jerry Brown, will bring leaders from cities, states, businesses, and community groups together to come up with a strategy for reaching the climate goals.

Read More: Climate Change Labelled Region's 'Biggest Threat' During Pacific Islands Forum

To start off the week, Gov. Jerry Brown just signed legislation to drastically lower the state's fossil fuel dependence by 2045, on Monday, ABC reports.

Despite the Trump administration's climate change inaction and controversial withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, citizens across the US and the world continue to fight climate change and stand up for environmental equity. Such grassroots efforts are helping to advance the fight against climate change and protect our collective home.