Rebellion Day: London’s Iconic Bridges Blocked To Protest Global Lack Of Climate Change Action

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Above photo: Westminster Bridge is one of the five bridges that has been blocked by protesters. AFP.

Near 10,000 private citizens took control of 5 bridges spanning central London

Towards 100 protestors have been arrested for peaceful civil disobedience

Extinction Rebellion, concerned with the unparalleled extinction rate and lack of Climate Change action, declares a rebellion against UK Government and calls for global peaceful civil disobedience to address this global issue.

London (United Kingdom), 17th November, 2018 –  Some 10,000 people from all over the world descended upon the British capital demanding more action on climate change, declaring a rebellion against UK Government and calling for global peaceful civil disobedience to address this global issue.

Organised by the Extinction Rebellion group, five bridges – Blackfriars, Waterloo, Westminster, Lambeth and Southwark – were blocked early Saturday morning and held for much of the day before moving to Parliament Square. The purpose of the action was to place pressure upon the UK government to be honest and forthright about the reality of the climate and ecological emergency.

For the first time in living memory, the bridges have been blocked by civilians who no longer wish to stand by.

Kofi Klu, spokesperson for PARCOE (Pan-Afrikan Reparations Coalition In Europe), from Ghana said:

“Fantastic. It feels really great to be able to participate in occupying these bridges. It’s symbolic. Bridges have been built by the ruling class of Europe to extract resources from Africa which is resulting in extinction that has resulted in crisis. Through Extinction Rebellion we can transform these bridges into ones that connect us across the globe to repair the damage that has been done, to learn from each other, to mutually encourage and that will bring about the rebellion and bring humanity to its rightful place in the cosmos, to become true brothers and sisters.

“It is possible. We have occupied these bridges. We can bring back life to the planet. This is the real making of history in the best traditions, when people come together in extremely challenging situations to come up from below and topple the entire edifice.”

Willing to be arrested, demands

Many of the protesters have willingly placed themselves in a position to be arrested and jailed to draw attention to the urgency of the situation. Almost a hundred arrests have been reported thus far, as bystanders dance, sing and celebrate their humanity and share their fears for a world threatened by the sixth mass extinction event in the Earth’s history. Peaceful protest is at the core of the action and invites all members of the human race to join and take the reigns of our collective future.

We are peacefully standing up for the Earth and for humanity. We call on world leaders to choose the welfare of humanity and life on Earth over profits NOW. This is a joyful rebellion and a much-needed disruption of the destructive status quo,” explained, Cecelia, US citizen and Extinction Rebellion’s organiser.

Extinction Rebellion demands the UK government to commit to net zero carbon emissions by 2025, reverse policies inconsistent with addressing climate change, and the creation of a “citizen’s assembly” to allow ordinary people a voice in creating new environmental policies.

Across the world

Solidarity actions are planned around the globe in France, Sweden, Germany, Canada and the United States, where protestors are set to block traffic in front of the Trump Hotel in Washington D.C. on the same day.

Rebellion Day is the climax of Extinction Rebellion’s first week of civil disobedience against the British Government for its criminal inaction in the face of the climate and ecological emergency which we all face. Over 50 people were willingly arrested prior to the November 17th climax over the River Thames.

Rebellion Day disrupted London. It is not a step we take lightly. If things continue as is, we face an extinction greater than the one that killed the dinosaurs. I don’t know about you, but I’d rather be a worthy ancestor,” said Tiana Jacout of Extinction Rebellion.

We represent a huge number of concerned citizens. Scientists, academics, politicians, teachers, lawyers, students, children, parents, and grandparents. But we have no choice. We have tried marching, and lobbying, and signing petitions. Nothing has brought about the change that is needed. And no damage that we incur can compare to the criminal inaction of the UK government in the face of climate and ecological breakdown.”

George Monbiot, a journalist from the Guardian present on Westminster bridge explained the day’s events as “something I have been waiting for, for a very long time. People are risking their liberty in defence of the living world in very large numbers. It is only when we are prepared to take such action that people begin to recognise the seriousness of our existential crisis.

 

Notes:

Website: https://rebellion.earth/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ExtinctionRebellion/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ExtinctionR; #extinctionrebellion #bridgename (for live updates)

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/extinctionrebellion/

on Rebellion Climate Factsheet for Rebels https://rebellion.earth/the-climate-factsheet-for-rebels/

  1. The Extinction Rebellion Climate Factsheet for Rebels https://rebellion.earth/the-climate-factsheet-for-rebels/

  2. About Extinction Rebellion

Time has almost entirely run out to address the ecological crisis which is upon us, including the 6th mass species extinction and abrupt, runaway climate change. Societal collapse and mass death are seen as inevitable by scientists and other credible voices, with human extinction also a possibility, if rapid action is not taken.

Extinction Rebellion believes it is a citizen’s duty to rebel, using peaceful civil disobedience, when faced with criminal inactivity by its Government.

Extinction Rebellion’s topline demands:

  • The Government must admit the truth about the ecological emergency, reverse all policies inconsistent with addressing climate change, and work alongside the media to communicate with citizens

  • The Government must enact legally binding policy measures to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2025 and to reduce consumption levels

  • A national Citizen’s Assembly must be created, to oversee the changes, as part of creating a democracy fit for purpose.

Declaration of Rebellion: https://rebellion.earth/declaration/ Free West Papua campaign https://www.freewestpapua.org  Phulbari Solidarity Group https://phulbarisolidaritygroup.wordpress.com

About RisingUp

The RisingUp network promotes a fundamental change of our political and economic system to one which maximises well-being and minimises harm. Change needs to be nurtured in a culture of reverence, gratitude and inclusion; whilst the tools of civil disobedience and direct action are used to express our collective power.