By Ethan Davies
CLIMATE activist group Extinction Rebellion has announced it is planning to blockade Parliament on its reopening in September.
It says the action will continue until the Conservative government pledge to debate their demands, namely declaring a climate emergency, revising the UK’s net-zero carbon target to 2025, and the creation of Citizens’ Assembly to lead on climate issues.
The London action will be mirrored in Cardiff, with the group claiming plans for similar protests in Scotland and the North are in the works.
Clare Farrell, Extinction Rebellion co-founder, said: “[We] recognise that the climate crisis is a symptom of a far wider kind of malaise and corruption in our politics, society and the human imagination.
“In the failed story of unlimited growth and spiralling inequality we are told to forget about our power, our community, and our rights as citizens – but together we are powerful.”
Extinction Rebellion says this latest round of action has been prompted by the fact that The Committee on Climate Change is now warning the government to prepare for 4°C of global warming.
In 2019, Extinction Rebellion disrupted roads, bridges, and trains across London in 10 days of activism that led to hundreds of arrests.
Elsewhere, Greta Thurnberg – the founder of the international school strike for the climate – has been urging students to strike from their online classes at home on Instagram.
Last month, the 17-year-old Time Person of the Year for 2019 has also said climate change is just “as urgent” an issue as the Covid-19 pandemic.
That’s a statement which resonates with Alex Armitage, Pediatrician and a member of Doctors for XR, who commented: “The Government’s inaction on coronavirus has led to the deaths of at least 44,000 people in the UK.
“We are now living through a new phase of the pandemic, but there is a far greater threat to our health: climate and ecological breakdown.
“We have lobbied MPs, stood for election, written letters, emails and we have tweeted at powerful people. But one thing gets clearer and clearer, our political system is rotten, no longer serving the needs of ordinary people.”
The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy was contacted for comment.
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