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Climate Change Protesters Take to the Streets, Despite Canceled Paris March

Julien Helaine/ Avaaz

The biggest event set to occur during the 2015 Paris climate conference was supposed to be a march of some 200,000 people. Climate change activists had hoped that such a public show of support the day before the formal talks begin would be impossible for world leaders to ignore, and would raise awareness and ambition during the negotiations for an accord that would hopefully slow the growth of greenhouse gas emissions.

The terror attacks in Paris earlier this month, however, prompted French authorities to cancel plans for the march. But the climate movement showed on Sunday that it still intends to be heard.

Instead of marching, activists placed 10,000 shoes on the pavement in Paris on Sunday to represent missing protesters. The installation even featured donations from a few high-profile advocates, including Pope Francis and United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Though the events Sunday were largely peaceful, there was a clash in Paris between some reportedly anti-police demonstrators and members of law enforcement, which ended in arrests.

Beyond Paris, event organizers estimated that more than 720,000 people participated in protests across 175 countries on Sunday—including large protests of tens of thousands of people in Madrid, Rome, London, and Melbourne. Below, you can see some of the highlights from the protests, courtesy of one of the organizers, Avaaz:

Paris, France
Julien Helaine
Zurich, Switzerland
New Delhi, India
Seoul, South Korea

Dhaka, Bangladesh
K M Asad
Sydney, Australia
Jarra Joseph-McGrath
Rob Pinney