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Climate strike draws thousands in Berlin as country grapples with energy crisis

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The ongoing war in Ukraine is continuing to put pressure on U.S. and European governments trying to make the shift to clean energy.

BERLIN-German police said roughly 15,000 climate activists attended Friday's climate strike, which was organized by 'Fridays For Future Berlin'. 

The strike was held at a park in downtown Berlin as activists called on the German government to shift away from the use of fossil fuels. 

Germany has increased energy production at coal power plants due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the former of which was a major supplier of natural gas. 

The country was previously receiving around 50% of its natural gas from the authoritarian state. 

At the protest, a climate activist, Michael, said people want Germany to honor its Paris Climate Accord agreement. 

"We want to show politics that we have to do more to meet the Paris agreement targets of 1.5 percentages of global warming and is not been met with actual politics," Michael said.

Germany has increased its hard coal production to more than 10% so far this year, according to Clean Energy Wire

Renewable energy production in Germany however has increased in 2022, with around 47% of production stemming from clean energy like wind and solar. 

Across the Atlantic, the City of Rochester is revamping its greenhouse gas emission goals as it begins to shift to cleaner alternatives, like electric buses.

Lauren Jensen, who is the sustainability coordinator for the City of Rochester, said the city's new goals are a reduction of emissions by 50% in 2030 and 100% in 2050.

The city previously had a reduction goal of 30% by 2025, which is a goal Jensen said the city is on track to meet. 

"We have already technically met it for the 30% reduction by 20-25. A big piece of that was RPU's (Rochester Public Utilities) commitment to 100% renewable energy by 2030, so that kind of put us ahead of that initial interim target that we had," Jensen said. 

In 2021, U.S renewable energy production accounted for 20%, while in Germany it was around 41%, according to the U.S Energy Information Administration and Clean Energy Wire. 

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