Tens of thousands of people marched on Washington over the weekend in the largest demonstration on climate change in the history of the United States.

More than 50,000 people marched through the streets and demonstrated on the National Mall as part of the “Forward on Climate Change” rally organized by the Sierra Club and 350.org. While protesters chanted and held signs denouncing fracking and calling for other environmental reforms, the majority of the protest focused on the transcontinental Keystone XL Pipeline, which seeks to create a 1,700 mile long pipeline taking tar-sand from Alberta, Canada, and pumping it to refineries in the Gulf of Mexico.

“Keystone XL is a dirty and dangerous pipeline. It’s literally going to cut our country in half, carrying a very dangerous fuel, and it will cause runaway climate change,” Maura Cowley of the Energy Action Coalition said to demonstrators. “Young people across the country are the same generation that elected Barack Obama twice now, and we really want to see him reject the Keystone XL pipeline.”

Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club shared similar sentiments. “President Obama holds in his hand a pen and the power to deliver on his promise of hope for our children. Today, we are asking him to use that pen to [sic] reject the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, and ensure that this dirty, dangerous, export pipeline will never be built,” he said. Brune was arrested last week in a protest in front of the White House against the Keystone XL Pipeline.

Media Resources: CNN 2/17/2013; Huffington Post 2/17/2013; Toronto Star 2/17/2013

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