Extinction Rebellion activists glue themselves to ground outside parliament

‘If politicians won’t take this crisis seriously then we must prevent them from causing more harm,’ says environmental group

Harry Cockburn
Thursday 03 September 2020 10:54
Extinction Rebellion activists glue themselves to ground outside parliament

Extinction Rebellion climate crisis activists have glued themselves to the street outside the entrance to parliament to highlight what they said was the government’s lack of action to tackle the environmental emergency.

The activists said the government had done little to reach its own “inadequate targets” so they had to take action to ensure politicians took the issue seriously.

A number of arrests have been made, according to Reuters.

Extinction Rebellion activists were sitting in the entrances to parliament on Thursday morning as MPs made their way into the Palace of Westminster.

Nuala Gathercole Lam from Extinction Rebellion told The Independent: “We will continue to cause disruption to parliament until serious action is taken following their declaration of emergency over a year ago.

“Their own advisers said in June that they are neglecting even their own inadequate targets, with only four of 21 indicators on track and only two of 31 milestones reached. If I got that kind of performance evaluation I’d be out of a job.

“Everything we love is at stake so we’re here until they act.”

The group said escalation of disruption followed Tuesday’s tabling of the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill by Green MP Caroline Lucas.

“If politicians won’t take this crisis seriously then we must prevent them from causing more harm,” Extinction Rebellion said.

“We will not be bystanders.”

Extinction Rebellion member Sarah Lunnon, who previously represented the Green Party for Stroud Central told The Independent: “We know that Parliament can act to address an emergency, we’ve seen the response to Covid 19.

“This highlights the lack of action taken to protect us from the far greater threat, the unravelling of climate and the natural world. The rebels glued on outside the entrances to Parliament are calling for emergency action, for the government to pass the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill tabled yesterday, sponsored by MPs from seven Political Parties.

“There is now a parliamentary route to action, we are demanding government take it, for us, for those yet unborn, for the beautiful web of life we share our common home with.”

The organisation has said the protests, which began this week as MPs returned from the summer recess, were to ensure “they start anew with justice, care and life at the heart of it”.

“From [September] 1st we will peacefully disrupt the UK Parliament in London, carrying out pressure building actions over two weeks, until they back the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill and prepare for crisis with a National Citizens’ Assembly,” Extinction Rebellion said on its website.

The Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill is a private members bill drafted by scientists, academics and lawyers, and aims to strengthen the Climate Change Act and ensure the UK has a comprehensive strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and restore our natural world.

The action in London comes as Extinction Rebellion members in Manchester target three branches of Barclays Bank. The group said this was to let customers know that Barclays, among other big banks, funds the fossil fuels worsening the climate crisis.

In a statement, Extinction Rebellion said: “[Barclays] is the biggest financier of fossil fuel projects in Europe, and has invested £89bn in them since the Paris Agreement was signed promising a transition to clean energy.

“The people of this country want to be part of that future, yet when investment – the money we have deposited – is funnelled into dirty energy rather than this transition we are locked into using that instead.”

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