By Mike Bastasch
For the next month, pedestrians walking through New York City’s five boroughs will see flashing road signs warning those walking by of the alleged dangers of man-made global warming.
“Climate denial kills,” “Abolish Coal-Onialism,” “50,000,000 Climate Refugees” and “End climate injustice” are just some of the warnings passersby will see as part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s effort to sound the alarm on global warming.
De Blasio’s office teamed up with the Climate Museum as part of a campaign called “Climate Signals” to put up road signs with warnings that were designed by artist Justin Brice Guariglia.
“When you see a traffic sign, your pulse quickens a little and you know you have to be on the alert for a changing condition that could affect your safety,” Climate Museum Director Miranda Massie told Yale Climate Connections on Wednesday.
The Climate Museum raised the money to put up the signs, so the climate advocacy campaign comes at no cost to the city, according to de Blasio’s office.
“The signs were provided at no cost to the city, the Museum raised all the funds themselves,” de Blasio spokesman Seth Stein told The Daily Caller News Foundation.
De Blasio has made fighting global warming a centerpiece of his administration. The Democratic mayor embarked on a campaign to divest city pensions of fossil fuel assets earlier this year and simultaneously filed suit against five major oil companies over global warming.
However, a federal judge tossed out New York City’s climate lawsuit in July. De Blasio brought on trial lawyers to handle the city’s suit against oil companies in exchange for a percentage of any winnings from the case.
Media outlets also criticized de Blasio’s climate suit in light of his well-known travel habits. The mayor “regularly rides around town in an SUV,” a New York Times writer pointed out, and the New York Observer called de Blasio an “Imperial Hypocrite” for the fleet of SUVs he takes to the gym every week.
City officials appear to have worked closely with climate activists for the Climate Signals exhibit. “[T]en sites were picked by the Parks Department to specifically emphasize an area’s vulnerability to climate change,” Gothamist reported Tuesday.
Museum officials say the goal of the campaign is to use art to educate the public about global warming. At least one NASA climate scientist and experts from other fields will stand by road signs on Saturday to answer questions people have about global warming, according to reports.
“I think that that connection is a brilliant one to make: putting words about climate into a format that automatically triggers a heightened sense of alert and a need, urgently, to pay attention,” Massie said.
The Climate Museum is following an approach to global warming propaganda pushed by Yale Climate Connections in a 2015 article, according to the university group. Road signs will also display climate warnings in multiple languages.
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I wonder how long it will be before somebody “repurposes” those signs with a new message. – Anthony