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As rain drizzled on a buzzing crowd, 4-year-old Jonquille Bond ran up the steps of Salt Lake City Hall.
Around her neck and on top of her pink dress was a sign reading "Climate change steals my rainbows." David Brooks, who had been emceeing the environmental rally on the steps of the building, brought Jonquille before the excited crowd of about 200 to demand what her sign read: stop stealing our rainbows.
The downtown rally was one of thousands around the world, large and small, demanding leaders make meaningful environmental policy changes in light of a United Nations Climate Summit scheduled for Tuesday. More than 120 world leaders will convene at the conference, aimed at galvanizing political will for a new global climate treaty by the end of 2015.
"It really is to show that people care about … the changing climate, they care about action on climate," said Susan Soleil, executive director of Utah Interfaith Power and Light, before her speech at the event. "And until we unite and our voices are louder than our silence, that only then will they act on our behalf."
On the ground level, Ty Markham, a member of the Mormon Environmental Stewardship Alliance, sees her church "waking up" too.
"It's sort of like moving a train, it's kind of a slow-moving situation, but it's there, and the people are moving faster," Markham said. "LDS people are concerned. They're not opposed to listening to the science, not all of them. They're aware, and they're becoming more and more aware. It's very exciting."
A lot of people face what Jai Hamid Bashir, a University of Utah student who organized the rally, calls ecological anxiety; a "feeling that we can't." But she doesn't want people to feel alone or powerless.
"I want people to feel, in fact, we can," Bashir said. "So I hope that's the takeaway."
Following speeches from Soleil, Markham, congressional unaffiliated candidate Bill Barron and others, the crowd marched several blocks east on 400 South, chanting and waving signs at passing motorists, before weaving back to City Hall. The overcast skies never let up but like Jonquille's rainbows follow the rain, so did the crowd hope that a better outcome follows what Markham called "the biggest moral issue that faces humanity right now."
The Associated Press contributed to this story.