Overnight Energy: Trump makes stop at UN climate event | Greta Thunberg rails at world leaders at UN General Assembly | Climate protests in DC | New BLM headquarters to share building with oil, gas companies

Overnight Energy: Trump makes stop at UN climate event | Greta Thunberg rails at world leaders at UN General Assembly | Climate protests in DC | New BLM headquarters to share building with oil, gas companies
© Aaron Schwartz

Happy Monday! And welcome to Overnight Energy, The Hill's roundup of the latest energy and environment news. 

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ALL EYES WERE ON THE UNITED NATIONS CLIMATE ACTION SUMMIT as world leaders gathered to discuss efforts to stem climate change.


Even Trump stopped by... President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans aim to avoid war with White House over impeachment strategy New York Times editorial board calls for Trump's impeachment Trump rips Michigan Rep. Dingell after Fox News appearance: 'Really pathetic!' MORE made a quick stop on Monday morning at the United Nations Climate Action Summit, an event he had been expected to skip.

Trump took a seat next to Vice President Pence as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was onstage.


Trump was seen applauding Modi after he ended his speech with a call to action: "The world needs to act now."

Trump also sat through German Chancellor Angela Merkel's remarks before departing. Merkel in her comments promised that Germany would obtain net zero emissions by 2050. She added that her country would phase out coal by 2038.

Trump did not appear to clap after Merkel's remarks. He attended the event for between 10 and 15 minutes total, according to reporters at the U.N.

Asked later why he attended the event Trump said, "I'm a big believer in clean air and clean water, and all countries should get together and do that, and they should do it for themselves. Very, very important."

The president had been expected to miss the New York event, which was pegged as the capstone to a week of international climate protests and marches. He did not attend a Group of Seven meeting on climate change during a summit in late August in Biarritz, France. 

Trump was scheduled to headline a religious liberty event that was set to take place during the climate summit on Monday in New York.

More on Trump here.


But the most watched moment was when Thunberg took the stage... Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg on Monday railed at world leaders at the United Nations, saying they have stolen her dreams and childhood,  forced children to take the reins in the fight against climate change and did not react to decades of scientific warnings. 

"My message is that we will be watching you," Thunberg said during the U.N. General Assembly climate summit. "This is all wrong. I shouldn't be up here, I should be back in school on the other side of the ocean, yet you all come to us young people for hope. How dare you."

She also said that world leaders "have stolen my dreams, my childhood, with your empty words and yet I'm one of the lucky ones."

"People are suffering, people are dying, entire ecosystems are collapsing. We are in the beginning of the mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairytales of eternal economic growth. How dare you," Thunberg added.

The 16-year-old started demonstrating outside the Swedish Parliament last year, sparking nationwide, youth-led climate protests. The Nobel Peace Prize candidate traveled by boat to attend the U.N. climate summit. 

On Monday, she also called out world leaders for saying they're "doing enough" when the "politics and solutions needed are nowhere in sight," and said they have ignored more than 30 years of "crystal clear" science warning of the impacts of climate change. 

"You say you hear us, and that you understand the urgency, but no matter how sad and angry I am I do not want to believe that," Thunberg said. "Because if you really understood the situation and still kept on failing to act you would be evil, and that I refuse to believe." 

More on Thunberg's speech here.


Video of Trump and Thunberg crossing paths goes viral... Video of Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg crossing paths with President Trump following her forceful speech at the United Nations on Monday quickly went viral across social media.

The encounter between the two came after Thunberg accused leaders of failing her generation during a blistering speech at the U.N. General Assembly climate summit.

As Trump arrived for this week's U.N. General Assembly, cameras caught Thunberg, an activist who inspired the worldwide youth movement to combat climate change, staring directly at Trump. It remains unclear what exactly she was reacting to.

More here.


Thunberg also lead a group of children filing a complaint with the UN... Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg and 15 other children from 12 countries filed a complaint to the United Nations Monday alleging world leaders violated children's rights because of inaction on climate change. 

The complaint was filed with the U.N. Committee on the Rights of the Child.

"Change needs to happen now if we are to avoid the worst consequences. The climate crisis is not just the weather. It means also, lack of food and lack of water, places that are unlivable and refugees because of it. It is scary," Thunberg, 16, said in an announcement of the complaint. 

The child petitioners range in age from 8 to 17. 

It was filed through the Third Optional Protocol, which allows children or adults on their behalf to appeal directly to the United Nations for help. 

More on the complaint here.


Meanwhile in Washington: Climate change protesters took to the streets of Washington, D.C., on Monday, temporarily shutting down several key intersections during rush hour to demand an immediate halt to fossil fuel production and a swift transition to renewable energy.

The demonstrations, organized by a coalition called Shut Down DC, coincided with the opening of the United Nations Climate Action Summit in New York.

More on the Monday morning protests here.


MEET THE NEW NEIGHBORS: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) signed a lease for its new headquarters in a Grand Junction, Colo. building that also houses several companies that the federal bureau regulates.

The Department of the Interior made the controversial announcement in July that most of BLM's Washington D.C. staff would be relocated out West. Officials said it would move staff closer to the lands and resources BLM oversees.

The new headquarters will cost significantly less than to run than the current D.C. office, BLM said in a release. The new headquarters will house the director, deputy director and several assistant directors of the BLM. 

It also, however, houses a construction company, a Chevron office, and a few oil and gas companies, according to online property records.

The building's other tenants were first reported by Colorado Public Radio.

"Today marks an important step for the Bureau. The relocation of our headquarters will provide significant benefits, including more efficient operations and being a better neighbor to western communities," BLM Deputy Director for Programs and Policy William Perry Pendley said in the release. 

The move out West has been controversial, with critics alleging it was mismanaged and unnecessary.

"Our worst fears have been confirmed: moving this critical public lands agency out of D.C. has always been intended to give more access to special interests while dismantling institutions and getting rid of federal employees," Deputy Director of Western Values Project Jayson O'Neill said in a statement.



On Tuesday, House Natural Resources will hold a hearing on eliminating fossil fuel subsidies and later that day will review a number of bills, including one that would repeal Trump's recent rollback of the Endangered Species Act. 

And in the Senate, a vote on Interior solicitor nominee Daniel Jorjani may come tomorrow afternoon. Jorjani is likely under review by Interior's Office of Inspector General, according to letters sent to two lawmakers on Friday.



-The market has spoken: Coal is dying, CNN reports.

-Dozens of corporate giants agree to cut emissions as UN turns to climate, we report.

-Guatemala to ban plastic bags, straws, cups beginning 2021, the Associated Press reports.

-Fifth death in Texas following flooding caused by remnants of tropical storm, NBC reports.


ICYMI: Stories from Monday and over the weekend...

-BLM's new headquarters to share building with oil and gas companies

-Kerry urges China and India to step up on climate change in WaPo op-ed

-Hundreds gather in Switzerland to hold funeral for disappearing glacier lost to global warming

-Sunrise Movement endorses Cuellar primary challenger

-Bloomberg editorial pushes for 'Meatless Mondays' to battle climate change

-Trump makes quick stop at UN climate event

-Greta Thunberg rails at world leaders at UN General Assembly: 'You have stolen my dreams and childhood'

-Protesters shut down DC intersections to demand shift to renewable energy

-Greta Thunberg, 15 other children file complaint saying world leaders not acting on climate change



-Cutting climate pollution isn't enough -- we also need carbon removal