HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Dozens filed onto the steps of City Hall in Huntsville with a unified message on climate change. Many in the crowd Thursday night were young people pleading for leaders to protect the planet they plan to grow old on.
One by one, they all approached City Council members with demands to declare a local climate emergency, generate a green jobs initiative and create an environment sustainability commission among other things.
“This is, what I would consider, one of the most important things I’ve ever done," said 11-year-old Laurel Howard. “I didn’t really know that I could have opportunities like this. I was sitting around waiting for some adult to do something about it.”
Howard and several dozen adults called our current climate a ‘crisis’ and strongly states that we need to figure out a solution.
“We’re pushing government officials at all levels to act on climate change because we feel it’s an emergency that needs immediate mobilization," said organizer Bill Forsee.
They joined millions across the country in the same fight.
Alabama state climatologist John Christy says in his professional opinion there is no for alarm.
“The climate is always fluctuating and changing, but in terms of becoming more dangerous we just don’t have any evidence of that," said Christy.
He says data over the past century shows a downward trend in Alabama temperatures. I think if you look at that and the marchers out there would come and look at it they would say ‘I don’t see any alarm there.’ You can see it was actually warmer in the past than it is today," explained Christy.
Not everyone agrees, and while that debate continues their fight moves forward.
“I went to school and told everybody about it because as many people as possible is great," said Howard. "Here are all of these people that share my common interests in protecting our planet and it’s really great.”
Christy says his research is backed by satellite data that records earths temperature and atmospheric activity month-to-month.
However, an unprecedented report just released by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel says there are signs of dire consequences ahead.