News & Politics

Thousands of Climate Change Protesters Are Coming to DC on October 11

There are protests at the White House planned for the entire week.

Tens of thousands of residents marched through Washington on June 6 to protest the death of George Floyd. (Photo courtesy of Creative Commons)

Thousands of climate-change protesters are planning to come to DC the week of Monday, October 11. Their aim: to demand that President Biden take a stronger stance on restricting fossil fuel projects. The weeklong protests—organized by the Build Back Fossil Free coalition, which is composed of over 100 different justice organizations from across the country—will happen daily in front of the White House, and culminate in a march to the Capitol steps on Friday, October 15.

Organizers expect several coalitions to show up, especially those representing Indigenous, Black and youth interests. As of now, there are about 3000 RSVPs, with activists from as far as Alaska pledging to attend. There will be an “outdoor action center” with a tent and signs, banners, props, and other art that will run at McPherson square from 8 AM to 6 PM October 11 through October 15. Protests will begin with a gathering at the McPherson square base at 8 AM each day, with a march to the White House at 9 AM. Here’s the slated schedule of themes for each day.

  • Monday, October 11: Indigenous Peoples Day.

  • Tuesday, October 12: “Fossil fuels are driving the climate crisis.”

  • Wednesday, October 13: “Climate chaos is happening now.”

  • Thursday, October 14: “We need real solutions, not false promises.”

  • Friday, October 15: “We did not vote for fossil fuels. Youth-led action.”

The protests are being held in anticipation of the UN Climate Change Conference in Glasgow, which kicks off on November 1. “President Biden came into office promising bold action to transform our economy with renewable energy and good jobs, but he passed the buck to a dysfunctional Congress,” Jean Su, director of the Center for Biological Diversity’s Energy Justice program said in a press release. “Biden has immense executive powers to speed the end of the fossil fuel era and ignite a just, renewable-energy revolution. Without executive action on fossil fuels, there’s no way for the president to protect us from the climate emergency. We’re calling on Biden to reclaim his power from coal- and gas-state Senators and show us he can be our Climate President.”

The protests are unpermitted, which means that there’s a possibility protesters will risk arrest should police direct them to clear out of the area.

Jane Recker
Assistant Editor

Jane is a Chicago transplant who now calls Cleveland Park her home. Before joining Washingtonian, she wrote for Smithsonian Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times. She is a graduate of Northwestern University, where she studied journalism and opera.