LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — Hundreds of people marched Friday in downtown Los Angeles and around the Southland as part of a coordinated global campaign aimed at raising awareness of climate change.

Some students walked out of school to take part in the event despite Los Angeles Unified School District officials discouraging students
from leaving campuses, instead encouraging on-campus climate-related events.

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Superintendent Austin Beutner and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti were among those set to visit schools and talk to students about the issue.

Participants in the Global Climate Strike event in downtown Los Angeles began gathering at Pershing Square late Friday morning for a midday rally. Other strike events were scheduled at City Hall, USC, Westchester, Santa Monica, Malibu, Pacific Palisades, Sherman Oaks, North
Hollywood, Pasadena, Long Beach, Anaheim, Tustin, Irvine, Huntington Beach, Laguna Beach and Claremont.

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Young people across the globe, from Australia to Kenya to Norway, took the day off work and school Friday to demand world leaders to take urgent action on climate change.

“I want people to know that we’re living in a climate emergency, and people need to wake up and start listening to the science,” one of the organizers, 16-year-old Chandini Brenan Agarwal, said.

(credit: CBS)

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The climate strike is taking place ahead of next week’s United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York.