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Big Climate Change Rally Today in Los Angeles

Activists join for a climate change rally in New York City in 2014, that was co-sponsored by National Nurses United, which is organizing a similar event today in Los Angeles. Courtesy: Reza Sunshine/National Nurses United
Activists join for a climate change rally in New York City in 2014, that was co-sponsored by National Nurses United, which is organizing a similar event today in Los Angeles. Courtesy: Reza Sunshine/National Nurses United
December 3, 2015

LOS ANGELES – Nurses and a coalition of environmental groups are holding a rally in downtown Los Angeles today to support the climate change negotiations going on this week in Paris.

The World Health Organization says 8 million people around the world are dying right now from the effects of air pollution, which mainly comes from the burning of fossil fuels.

Fernando Losada, director of environmental health and climate justice with the National Nurses United union, helped TO organize the event in Pershing Square, where 2,000 nurses and community members will be demanding that countries take action.

"This is not just an environmental or climate crisis,” he states. “It's directly a health crisis affecting the health of millions around the world, and we think this is the greatest threat to human health that humanity has ever faced. So, as nurses, we can't take it lying down."

The World Health Organization predicts climate change will kill a quarter of a million people a year between 2030 and 2050, mainly from malnutrition, malaria, diarrhea and heat stress.

Losada says nurses are protesting climate change because they see the problem up close when treating the victims of pollution created by the fossil fuel industry.

"And we treat the people at the bedside that are in these communities where the refineries are located that are breathing the toxic air, the coal dust and the pet coke dust, that are the victims of oil spills,” he stresses. “We see the consequences in people's health."

Losada notes that experts predict global warming and climate change will magnify the health impacts of hunger and malnutrition due to drought, the spread of disease after floods and displacement from severe weather events and sea level rise.


Suzanne Potter, Public News Service - CA