The Council of the City of New York
Office of Costa Constantinides
For Immediate Release
April 28, 2017
Contact: Shachar Sharon
Councilman Holds Astoria Rally for Climate Action
Astoria, N.Y. – Elected officials, community leaders, and hundreds of members of the public gathered today to rally in support of climate action. The rally was held in honor of Earth Day and as a send-off for the People’s Climate March on Washington held the following day.
Speakers at the rally included Council Member Costa Constantinides, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, State Senator Michael Gianaris, Assembly Member Aravella Simotas, Global Kids, Astoria Park Alliance, Astoria Houses Tenants Association, and others.
The elected officials joined the community leaders and pledged to fight for federal action on combating climate change. The rally was held following the proposed 30% budget cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency and the Trump administration’s executive order rolling back environmental protections and efforts to combat climate change including the Clean Power Plan. The speakers discussed how the city is keeping environmental protection a top priority through legislation that encourages use of renewable energy and helps reduce pollution.
Attendees were also tasked with keeping the environment as a top priority. They were given a Personal Climate Action Plan with advice on how they can combat climate change and improve the environment. The plan included actions such as calling the EPA to support the Clean Power Plan, joining a local park group, and using reusable bags. All attendees got to take home a reusable bag for carrying groceries, shopping, or other items.
Constantinides said, “As we approach the first 100 days of the Trump administration, we are faced with the stark reality that our federal government will chose fossil fuels and special interests over protecting our environment. The proposed budget cuts to the EPA, the executive order dismantling the Clean Power Plan, and the administration’s rhetoric show that they think combating climate change is not a valuable pursuit. This misguided policy goes against scientific facts – we know climate change is real and can already feel its effects. Our city has picked up the mantle of leadership on the environment and made sustainability a top priority. Our policies to reduce pollution and encourage renewable energy will go a long way but we cannot do it alone. It will take the cooperation of every New Yorker to improve our environment. The Personal Climate Action Plan gives everyone tips on what they can do to make a difference. Thank you to everyone who attended and who will put the action plan into practice. I also thank my colleagues in government and community advocates for their partnership on this rally.”
This rally was part of Council Member Constantinides’ agenda to combat climate change, both through legislation and through community cooperation. He created an online petition with Council Member Ritchie Torres calling for cleaner power generation. The petition calls on power plant operators to implement a plan to end the use of dirty fuel oils, which are linked to air pollutants that pose risk to public health including higher rates of asthma. His legislation for environmental justice passed the City Council and was signed by the Mayor this month.
Council Member Costa Constantinides represents the New York City Council’s 22nd District, which includes his native Astoria along with parts of Woodside, East Elmhurst, and Jackson Heights. He serves as the chair the City Council’s Environmental Protection Committee and sits on six additional committees: Civil Service & Labor, Contracts, Cultural Affairs, Oversight & Investigations, Sanitation, and Transportation. For more information, visit council.nyc.gov/costa.