Internal newsletter 3

Hi all,

The build-up to April is underway. With the swarming of Fashion Week, and a whole range of regional actions including street parties in London and Bristol, Extinction Rebellion is re-entering mainstream consciousness. This return will be made official in a large-scale media briefing this Tuesday (see ‘Press’ for details), when we will announce our upcoming plans to the general public.

As we enter ‘Phase 2’, it’s only fitting that XR London should be moving into a new office. After weeks of anticipation, the necessary papers have at last been signed and we’ve been told to expect just a few days more anticipation before receiving the keys.

But there’s plenty more to anticipate: the Spring Uprising has been confirmed and will be happening on March the 16th, we’ll be mass fly-posting by the end of that month, while plans for April just got even more exciting with a March for Life.

More immediately, our next big event is coming this Friday at the Department for Education; but those who can’t make it to this – or who just can’t wait to start pressuring the government into action on climate – will be happy to find a new group aiming to use collective complaints to improve the BBC’s coverage of ecological catastrophe.

It looks like an exciting few months!

Internal news

Actions, Art and Logistics

Actions

After successful actions at Fashion Week this Sunday, and a street party in Hackney last weekend, the actions team is now preparing for this Friday’s event outside the Department for Education. Detailed plans are also being made for the Blood of Our Children event on the 9th of March.

Art

Art dept have been busy as usual!

  • Working on new lino cuts, and new artworks for the next round of flags, banners and placards.
  • Special edition artworks for London Fashion week including fashion ad hijacks.
  • A new Performance focussed working group has formed, hatching plans for ‘a breathtaking street presence’ for April.
  • Rolling out workshops in art schools where clothing is printed and placards are made alongside a talk on rebellion.
  • Sourcing reclaimed fabrics for future autonomous art factories of the future, check out the prototype from last autumn here,
  • Working on the new website.

 

M&M

Social media

  • We’ve passed 60k followers on Facebook, over 30k on Instagram, and are nearly at 50k on Twitter – thanks for your support!
  • NEW EVENT UP! We’re kick-starting the callout for a worldwide week of MASS FLYPOSTING to tell the truth on the climate emergency and ecological collapse, starting from March 30th in the leadup to International Rebellion.
  • Over 7,500 Rebels are already listed as Going or Interested to the Facebook event
  • for International Rebellion event starting April 15th!

Press

The press team has been busy covering recent actions, while also preparing for a large-scale media briefing on Tuesday the 26th, similar to a successful briefing held by us in November. During this we will present our strategy for April along with details of planned events. We are also working on a features strategy to ensure more coverage independent of actions.

Spokes and Notables circle

We have notables supporting us from the academic/ scientific /conservation/political communities and the mainstream celebrity communities. We are also starting to reach out to influencers in the local communities. The normal people who are doing extraordinary things and inspiring others to take action. We are currently planning an event in North Wales on April the 8th. The world class climber James McHaffie will be naming a new climb after XR , this will be a route never before attempted and will be known henceforth to the climbing world as the Extinction Rebellion climb. He will also be hoisting a huge banner. Please come along and offer support and use social media to share this event. Multi award winning National Geographic contracted photographer and conservationist Ami Vitale and Emmy winning filmmaker/ecologist Chris Morgan are also supporting the climb.

We will give directions to the exact locations at a later date. If anyone has any direct links to any celebrities or influencers who are passionate about the environment please contact us at xrnotables@gmail.com.

Blog

A subgroup of XR Blog has been formed: !XRWINS! (Writers’ International Networks). The purpose of !XRWINS! is to create a spider’s web of back-links across the net by approaching a large number and diversity of individual websites to feature a small diplomatic statement about XR in the context of the toxic media and democratisation of the net, along with clickable links back to xrebellion.org, rebellion.earth and xrblog.org. Media and Messaging WG will be consulted on the content of this statement, which within months we intend to see all over the net.

 

Regen

The London Regen group had a fantastic discussion at the weekly Wednesday meeting in response to the question of ‘Why does our group exist? Why regenerative culture? And what does that mean for our activities as a group?’ The following text has been stitched together from the minutes of that meeting:

Regenerative culture breaks away from the mainstream, depletive culture that is driving the ecological disaster. A rebellion of culture against our sick society. Let’s make time for embodiment. For connection. Deep connection. With the Earth, with each other and with ourselves. We must balance the urgency of our task with the pertinence of each present moment. Each soul with which we share this task.

The coming together of LIFE. ‘A depth of Wellness’. Avoiding blame. Community. Libraries. Reaching out. Breaking through the dismal spectacle of our society. Rippling out. Calmness and kindness – revitalising and refreshing. An Antidote to alienation and individualism. Harmony. Beauty. Balance.

Land Respite

With the idea gathering momentum of marching on London from all quarters of the UK, Land and Respite is looking to provide some of the accommodation needs for marchers / walkers. This can be via Open Homes (private XR households) or land-based projects (eco-projects).

As marchers accumulate towards London the demand for accommodation will increase, so we particularly seek hosts to get in touch with us clustered within a thirty mile radius of the city. However please be clear that we are not organising any accommodation for activists during actions. This is the remit of a separate WG. Our remit is ‘before and after’. Write to xr-landandrespite@protonmail.com We have taken on extra admin capacity ready for an influx of offers from hosts. We have 50 so far, but at least 500 by mid-April, including 300 clustered around the city, is our aim.

Open Homes can double up as casual sofa-surfing hosts by arrangement for XR activists travelling around the country. See the map of current hosts here.

 

Legal

The XR Legal Support Team continues to support arrestees and defendants; we are also working on legal strategy that can be presented in court. Furthermore, we are gearing up for upcoming actions by preparing easy to read information sheet for potential arrestees. Please contact xr-legal@riseup.net if you have been arrested but haven’t heard from us yet.

 

Talks and Trainings

Rather excitingly, we have a new team of professional meeting facilitators working on an XR facilitation training which we will hopefully start to deliver in local XR groups by the end of February. If you’re a facilitator and would like to help us deliver these trainings, please get in touch with xr.talks.trainings@gmail.com .

Furthermore, speaker trainings on how to do the Heading for Extinction talk have been arranged in London, Oxford, Cambridge, Newcastle, Sheffield, and Birmingham for the coming weeks. Get in touch with the local coordinators if you would like to attend one of them.

 

Communities

Regional Development

Our team is growing and working well with the Intergration team in developing an efficient and thorough process for new groups to follow and then to become connected to their local xr network. Please send any new groups you become aware of to xr-regionaldevelopment@protonmail.com

We have been struggling to cover all areas of the UK with Regional Coordinators, especially in the midlands and the north of England. We need local coordinators who have a good view of the XR landscape of their region to join our working group.

Integration

The integration team have put together a Rebel Starter Pack for new members. This is part of a developing induction process that includes regular online Intro to XR sessions and weekly Working Group Integration sessions to bring people into UK working groups. An outline of this new process along with links to sign up to new sessions can be found on page 11 of the Rebel Starter Pack.

Newsletters

The newsletter team has been growing a lot, and is currently plotting a survey which should allow us to better understand what our readers value in what we produce. Related to this, we’re also considering a radical restructuring of our format to become more user-friendly. We sent out issue 13 last night; you can find it here. If you or your Working Group would like to feature an announcement in a future issue, please email xr-newsletter@protonmail.com.

Conflicting demands have hindered the author of the internal newsletter in the creation of this issue – he’s sorry about that, and grateful to all the working group contributors.

Tech

The Tech team have just recruited a bunch of new members and are making moves to become more visible within XR. Recently they have been working on a new website, potential technologies for ticketing and are currently in the process of overhauling the Basecamp structure and documentation to ease the onslaught of notifications and improve communication links within the movement.

Festivals

The Festivals Working Group have been active now since the end of December to create a range of festival offerings to create maximum impact & movement-building opportunities throughout the summer. Most of the festivals we are applying to will have an info stall as a focal point for roving engagement teams, plus a speaker slot(s) if there is an available platform, and will be staffed by our Local Group network. We also have our ‘Rebel Rebel’ offering comprising a bespoke, professional grouping of tented areas to create a versatile platform for talks, trainings, engagement activities & music. This is being targeted at key festivals such as Glastonbury, Shambala & Blue Dot, and will utilise volunteers from within the movement to create a vibrant, colourful & dynamic presence to help raise the profile of XR. More info in the next issue 😉

 

International Support

The international support team are setting up teams of regional liaisons to coordinate communication across different geographical areas in order to decentralise the international rebellion and we are looking for people who want to take on supporting the rebellion internationally through these roles. More information can be found here.

We have a support network to help new national groups setting up and if you have any questions or would like to get hold of us then send an email to xr-international@protonmail.com

 

Finance and Fundraising

We reached £10,000 for our 2019 crowdfunder: https://fundrazr.com/Global_XR

This needs everyone’s help sharing to help us reach the £250k we need for April’s rebellion.

 

Political Strategy

Citizens Assembly for the Climate Emergency

The Citizens Assembly for the Climate Emergency (CACE) working group were advised that the best way to approach the Government to form a Citizens Assembly is to argue that the CA can solve a problem the Gov’t are not able to themselves.

They have planned another webinar to explain citizens assemblies, agreed text describing citizens assemblies for the XR website and adjusted their mandate to reflect the need to lobby Gov’t for CACE, by both XR membership generally (for which a template letter is being drafted) and through a point of direct contact with MP’s. As such, the XR CACE working group ask that someone capable of fulfilling that role can join their team.

 

Self Organising System

The SOS team have been creating new ways for the XR Organism to work in the holacracy inspired principles of autonomy and decision making. For a full reference of this, please check out our new Self Organising System document (shorter version here). We have also been working to build on the structure of XR UK which you can check out here. At the moment this structure isn’t fixed- its all a work in progress to make sure we can start to set up an airtight, constitutional organisation by the time April 15th rolls around.

We had meetings with Movement, Actions and Political circle coordinators last week and are organising an Anchor circle meeting for this week. These meeting will be all be publicly available to watch afterwards and should be available to join as silent witnesses in the future.

Need to know who to get in touch with? Check out the XR Organism spreadsheet.

Please make sure you send us all the key documents and videos for your group to add to this spreadsheet. Info on how to do this here.

If you need help setting up the SOS system in your group please get in touch.

SOS out!

Photo: Hackney Street Party, February 9th

General Climate News

The Institute for Public Policy Research published a report last Wednesday condemning the lack of policy response to now ‘critical’ levels of climatic change and its ‘catastrophic outcomes’. Following this – and XR protests at fashion week – the Environmental Audit Committee released a report calling for fashion retailers to ‘take responsibility’ for their waste. Further research on insect decline made available in the journal Biological Conservation calls for an urgent rethinking of global agricultural practices.

In better news, 15,000 UK pupils walked out of schools on Friday, following Greta Thunberg’s example. Shale fracking firm Cuadrilla lost their second planning application in Lancashire, albeit due to traffic complaints. Lastly, Hornsea One offshore windfarm will start to supply this week and is set to be the largest of its kind when completed.

 

Briefing – Collective action vs. individual action

 

This week, Louisa Goodfellow discusses the notorious ‘collective vs individual’ framing of ecological action.

A commonly cited theory surrounding the ‘individual vs. collective’ is that of the Prisoners’ Dilemma; that two prisoners in solitary confinement inform on each other to lessen their sentence, resulting in both sentences being increased. It is applied in this context as an unwillingness to act if others are not, the consequences of which being a worsened situation for all. However, most research suggests we act as a result of socio-political norms and principles, not in solitary confinement.

Writing in the Guardian, Martin Lukacs argues that pervasive neo-liberalist ideals have led us to believe in individual climate mitigation, whereas the only solution is collective action against corporate institutions. Pervasive Thatcherite privatisation, de-regulation and tax cuts have created an environment in which 100 corporations emit 71% of global CO2 emissions. This doctrine of individualist consumption has perhaps been prioritised within environmental advocacy in recent years (‘Think global, act local’) – emphasizing independent lifestyle choices, when compared with the public outcry concerning pesticides in the 60’s post ‘Silent Spring’, for instance.

The 2009 pre-COP15 rally 350.org co-ordinated 181 simultaneous protests, perhaps the largest collaborative protest in history. More recently, outcry that 8 million plastics are annually dumped in the oceans in a campaign spearheaded David Attenborough has certainly pervaded the public consciousness. But pledges by firms to reduce single use plastics and increase R&D into recycling will be another example of private greenwashing unless there is continued and wilful civil impetus for an overhaul of practice.

This case and many others proves that mass remonstration can be significantly impactful. However, as Elizabeth Wainwright reasons, rejecting the ‘individual vs. collective’ dichotomy altogether will allow a celebration of individual stories and strengths, whilst ‘tackling the corporate powers collectively’. This reframing might be seen an important part of XR’s recent successes: seeking to collectively mobilize enough of the population in a democratic, de-centralized network to challenge socio-political norms, whilst not precluding individual action and responses.

To tackle the global, diffuse damage of environmental change an individualist approach cannot work. But an individual action will make a small difference and influence collective decision making. Therefore it stands to reason that much-needed cooperative global grassroots movements, comprising of individuals, will be integral to effectively challenge damaging economic and social institutions.

Newsletter #13 – Back in Action

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Welcome to the 13th Extinction Rebellion newsletter!

Extinction Rebellion is back on the streets. Months of preparations are now bearing fruit, with actions in Britain’s major cities and all over the world.

 

But April’s International Rebellion takes us into the countryside too. On April 15th, our March For Life will see rebels walking across the fields and the hills to take a stand against climate inaction, while before that we’ll be re-connecting with nature and each other at the Spring Uprising festival on March the 16th. But we’re also mobilising in cyberspace: this new Facebook group gives us a collective voice – one that can’t be ignored – to demand that the BBC gives the ecological crisis every moment of attention it deserves. And the design for a new window-poster (best printed on coloured paper) means our rebellion will be brewing not just on the streets, but above them!

There’s a lot more to come, and not just from us: on Friday the 15th, the globe-spanning Youth Strike made a phenomenal start in the UK, with 10,000 children across 60 towns showing adults how it’s done. With growing momentum for an American Green New Deal, and major NGOs shifting to support civil disobedience, it’s clear that we’re part of a rapidly rising tide of protest.

 

It’s time for a turning-point. The next few months could be a crucial moment in human and ecological history. To join the momentum, please see our volunteers page for available roles or get in touch with your nearest XR group. If you can’t spare time, but can donate money instead, please see our fundraiser page.

Check out what’s on near you with our full list of upcoming events, available to view on our website rebellion.earth/events. Or create your own event by filling in our talks and trainings form. If you’re new, or haven’t already seen it, remember to check out our Campaign Overview Document.

If you’d like to look back through the newsletter archive, you can find it here.

 

Contents

 

  • Recent Activity
  • Upcoming Activity
  • International Highlights
  • Announcements
  • Extreme Weather
  • Latest News and Data
  • Recommended Content
  • Regenerative Culture / Good News Stories

 

Recent Activity

 

First National Youth Strike for Climate – February 15th

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On Friday 15th over 15,000 children left school to take part in the UK’s first Youth Strike for Climate. In more than 60 towns and cities, children gathered with teachers and parents to demand that the government take action on the ecological emergency.

In London, the turnout far exceeded organisers’ expectations with thousands of children gathering to block traffic in Parliament Square, on Westminster Bridge and outside Downing Street. The deployment of police horses did nothing to dampen the jubilant spirits. And nor could the helicopters drown out the children’s calls for justice.

Bing Jones, a member of XR, was in Sheffield: “300 to 400 kids turned up. We provided a PA system and a focus and I spent 2 and a half hours doing nothing but guiding kids to come forward and speak: say your name and school and off they went. They spent an average of about a minute each. They were articulate and informed and electric. It was one of the best days of my life. We had more than 100 speakers, cheered every time. Only a handful of adults spoke. Electric.”

Given the day’s success, it’s likely that the next strike on the 15th of March – planned as both national and global – will be many times bigger. In the meantime, XR and Youth Strike will be co-hosting an event outside London’s Department of Education (see below for more.)

See here for a debate on the strikes with XR spokesperson Clare Farrell; see here for Youth Strike organiser Anna Taylor on BBC Newsnight

 

Day of Regional Rebellion – February 16th

Keir_Robertson_Bristol_16_02_2019_Street Party 1.jpg

On Saturday, hundreds of rebels across the UK united to let those in power know that our numbers are growing, as is our willingness to act. In Bristol, hundreds united in shutting down the city centre with a street party, using dance and song to pressure the local council into greater action on the ecological emergency. In Cardiff, over a hundred rebels gathered to sing and speak to the public, gathering signatures to provide a big boost to their petition to the Welsh government. Over a hundred rebels in Cornwall blocked roads and marched in a funeral procession through the streets of Looe in honour of coastal communities. There was an eleven-minute silence, as well as speeches, poems and songs. Even more actions took place in Nottingham, Brighton and Gloucester.

 

Swarming Fashion Week – February 17th

 

The fashion industry is unquestionably one of the world’s most powerful and polluting industries. So on Sunday 17th February rebels disrupted the opening of London Fashion Week’s by swarming the streets outside key venues and calling on fashion to wake up to the climate and ecological crisis, and to use its influence to help create a just and sustainable world.

In mourning for the daily extinction of hundreds of species and the human lives lost as a result of the natural world’s collapse, rebels dressed as though for a glamorous funeral. We were joined by some of the catwalk models who posed in front of our banners, and the disruption was filmed by international TV channels and featured in the national press – including the fashion industry’s flagship magazine, Vogue.

 

Local Actions

 

Hackney Street Partyhackney.jpg

On Saturday 9th February, XR London rebels held a peaceful street party and blocked the road outside Dalston Kingsland station in Hackney. This was the first of a number of creative roadblocks planned in the build up to International Rebellion Week starting 15th April. Activists enjoyed a sunny day filled with great speakers, friendly discussion, delicious vegan food – provided by the Turkish Gözleme stall in Ridley Road Market – and a jam-packed schedule of music and spoken word poetry. The event was MC’d by Marv Radio and saw spoken word from Dizreali and Earthman Bob, live music from All Things Mata and Zantagola and Samba provided throughout by the Baque de Axé Drummers. Hackney local DJ Dgo opened and closed the event with Reggae, Roots, and Dub.

Amongst all the music was an array of amazing speakers promoting local causes. Sam Smithson from Sustainable Hackney brought their campaign for Hackney city council to declare a climate emergency to the crowd’s attention. Only 200 signatures are needed for this to be discussed in an official forum so please sign here. Other speakers included Janie Mac from the Refugee Community Kitchen, Bettina Maidment for Plastic Free Hackney and Katie Hodgetts from the UK Youth Climate Coalition. Pastor Dave from Victory Outreach also spoke for his campaign, ‘Stop the Violence London’ to bring people out of a life involving gun and knife crime, and promote Non-Violence.

The aim of the day was to create an open and positive atmosphere of light hearted, non-violent action, with discussion centred around environmental issues. The community-building action saw activists interacting with passersby throughout the day, discussing the movement and the growing threat from climate change locally and across the globe.

Thank you to everyone who came along and helped make this day a success.

See video coverage here

 

Norwich

Monday 11th February XR Norwich shut down the Norfolk County Council budget meeting for 4 hours. The local XR group had previously asked both Norwich City and Norfolk County councils to declare a #ClimateEmergency. They also demanded the council drop its plans to spend £200m on building a carbon-guzzling road through a special area of conservation (SAC) with SSSIs and wildlife sites. The group had been juxtaposing and linking the two issues – you can’t declare a Climate Emergency and continue high-carbon, economic growth system, vanity projects.

Twenty-five Rebels entered the Council Chamber and stayed there until the police intervened: four were arrested for refusing to leave the chamber. The action was covered by both regional BBC and ITV, with Rupert Read appearing for a face to face interview  on the late evening BBC news.

This powerful action testifies to the continuing evolution of the movement around the country at a grassroots, local level.

 

Glue-ons in Stroud

Stroud Rebels followed Norwich’s lead on the 13th February, disrupting a Gloucestershire County Council budget meeting with singing and chanting in the public gallery: two Rebels glued themselves to their seats, demanding “the council’s budget acknowledges climate change.”

While the Rebels continued to call out the Council’s criminal negligence for failing to take any action in the face of impending climate and ecological collapse, the meeting was adjourned and the police called in.

The more we in XR are willing to take such actions holding local leaders to account, the more powerfully our message will hit home, forcing those in power to re-assess their priorities and put the climate where it belongs: at the top of the agenda.

Article here

 

Oxford Roadblock

Rebels in Oxford blocked a road earlier this month – then eloquently explained why with this article in the Oxford Times

 

Local contributions

 

Decentralisation is a central part of XR’s ethos, and this applies geographically too. So while high-profile actions will often take place in the big cities, we’re eager to celebrate all the amazing actions across the country and the world every week. If you’re involved in your local XR scene, whatever the country, and if you’ve got a story to share, please email xr-newsletter@protonmail.com with ‘Story Contribution’ in the headline.

 

Upcoming Activity

 

Climate Truth for Schools – DfE, February 22nd

The National Curriculum is failing to inform young people about Climate Change, yet it is today’s schoolchildren who will be left holding the can. For this reason XR will be following up on the Youth Strike of 15 February by protesting at the Department for Education on Friday 22nd February. Please print and sign a copy of the letter with our demands, and if you have young children, stamp it with their hand prints and post it to Department for Education, 20 Great Smith St, Westminster, London, SW1P 3BT. Please share as widely as possible and tell your friends to share too. And join us on Friday 22nd (12pm at Old Palace Yard by Westminster Abbey and then on to the Dept for Education). Thank you. For more details and updates see our FB page: https://www.facebook.com/events/289249745087770/

 

The Blood of our Children: an Act of Civil Disobedience, March 9th  

Join our bloody but non-violent civil disobedience at a central London government location. The science is done. We are in a climate and ecological emergency. We’re on course to send our children to an early death likely to involve mental breakdown, starvation and war. There are no words to describe the horrors we risk if we do not make governments act immediately. Every parent, every adult, everyone has a responsibility and duty to take action. Even if that means breaking the law.

So whatever your age, beliefs, or background, Extinction Rebellion is calling for you to come and pour (artificial) blood on the ground outside a key government location. We’ll make the gravity of the crisis viscerally clear and show that we’re prepared to make the sacrifice of our own freedom by being arrested. This is now what’s required. We also wish to apologise to the next generation for our complicity in this the greatest of all crimes – to leave a legacy of hell. A future defined by the climate and ecological breakdown.

The event page is here. Say you are “going” or “interested” on this page and we will message you with a full briefing. Please share and spread the word. If you have any questions, email us at boocxr@gmail.com.

 

Spring Uprising – Festival – March 16th

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WINTER IS OVER, WAKE UP – THERE’S A REBELLION ON

LET’S GET TOGETHER, CELEBRATE XR, GET TRAINED, GET ORGANISED

AND HAVE A DAMN GOOD TIME DOING IT

So we are throwing a 3000-person Indoor XR festival!

Set to feature music, talks, political discussions, art workshops, trainings, and much much more – the Spring Uprising will be the perfect preparation for our coming Rebellion

See the website for details – and bookings!

Facebook event-page here

 

International Highlights

 

France

Not only was the weekend of 24th/25th January an important one for action in the US (see newsletter 12) but in France, in a day of action organised by various French environmental groups, more than 140,000 people took to the streets in no less than 120 cities. In Perpignan there were marches, assemblies, human chains, flashmobs, die-ins and non-violent actions.

In the Place de la République, Paris, 8500 people gathered for an ‘agora’ (public political meeting). Brest was the scene of a human chain, and Orleans of a die-in. In Lyon, 5000 people mobilized to denounce air pollution. In Dijon, 1200 people found themselves in front of the town hall hands painted in red to symbolize the climate emergency. Read more (in French) here.

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Canada

XR Canada are organising a Rebellion Week, to run from February 10 to 17, from Vancouver to New Brunswick. Organisers are urging rebels to join their local groups and organise their own actions (following, of course, the spirit of XR). There will be a die-in followed by road blockages in Halifax, Nova Scotia on Saturday 16th, and the Forest Protectors are on stand-by in Lockeporte for snap action against clear-cutting of the forest. Rebels can also join the women’s rally for missing and murdered women which traditionally takes place across Canada on Valentine’s Day, but are asked to carry out any actions at a different time to these rallies. For more details see https://www.facebook.com/events/237959086954537/

 

Australia

There will be a Melbourne Central Extinction Rebellion ‘Die In’ on 04 March, 2019 at 12:00 PM.This will be a peaceful demonstration at the Melbourne Central Shopping Centre.  We will assemble at the State Library for a briefing on the action, before proceeding across the road to carry out the action. The action will involve people symbolically ‘dying’ in the shopping centre. RSVP: https://actionnetwork.org/events/melbourne-central-die-in/ Share with your friends on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/376149109874462/

 

Announcements

 

March for Life

Still thinking of travel plans for April 15? How about walking?

The Extinction Rebellion March For Life will see XR branches setting off from all across the UK, joining up with other groups on the way, and arriving in London with minds full of the nature we seek to protect. This could be a once-in-a-lifetime experience: a chance to spend time outside, to get to know your fellow rebels before shutting down London together, and to receive extra training en route. It’ll also save money – and emissions – on coaches!

If you aren’t up to walking all the way to London, there are still loads of ways you can help: offering accommodation/facilities, food and drink, publicity, or logistical support, at your location or in London.

 

Land Respite

The Land and Respite Working Group seeks more Open Homes hosts from around the country. We especially seek hosts along the routes of the planned marches to London beginning in March, and also clustered within a 30 mile radius of London, as more hosts will be required when more citizens join the marches towards London. Additionally we are building a ‘city support belt’ of land-based projects circling London which initially will serve the function of gathering, grounding and respite. These could include land squats as well as privately owned projects. Please get in touch if you know of such projects, especially to the north and west of the city. For Open Homes hosts and city support belt write to xr-landandrespite@protonmail.com

 

Talks and Trainings in your area

Looking to bring the Rebellion to your local area? Fill in this form, and we’ll provide you with all the resources you need!

 

XR Blog

XR Blog seeks submissions on an ongoing basis, from rebels from all walks of life. Minimal writing experience is required. If you’re stuck for content we can provide a variety of writing briefs. Please contact us on xrblog@protonmail.com

 

Arts – print your own window posters!

Beautify your window and get your neighbours to rebel in April with this new window-poster! For best results, print on coloured paper.

 

Legal – expenses

Dear Local and Affinity Groups,

Ahead of actions please make sure that Rebels who might get arrested have enough personal finances to cover travel to court in the event that they are charged. You may wish to ensure these financial resources by fundraising as a group so that the ones who are putting themselves on the line can feel safe that their court travel costs are covered and will be able to defend themselves in court. Also, please keep in mind that if your Rebels are arrested away from your local area they will need to travel to where they were arrested at least 2-3 times to attend hearings and court dates.

Central XR Finances don’t pay for court travel costs. XR Legal Support has a small hardship fund for court travel costs. Please contact xr-legal@riseup.net.

 

Finance – correction

We need to correct an item in our last newsletter: XR at a UK national level does not make a commitment to pay for arrestee support because: a) local fundraising is a way to share our information and garner support, b) we are concerned that this cost could grow beyond what we can cope with, c) there are currently insufficient funds. We are investigating the possibility of a hardship fund. We can offer support to help groups get crowd fundraisers off the ground locally- they were written about here some time ago. In exceptional cases of financial hardship, XR Legal supports rebels to pay for their travel to court (xr-legal@riseup.net).

 

Extreme Weather

 

Bushfires in Tasmania

At least 173 hectares, or 2.5% of Tasmania’s world heritage forests have burnt in a crisis which has overwhelmed Tasmania’s firefighting capacity. Matthew Newtown travelled into the exclusion zone alongside the Tasmanian fire service. View his photographs here.  (Tasmanian Richard Flanagan has written a moving piece about these fires “Tasmania is burning. The climate disaster future has arrived while those in power laugh at us”.)

 

Thousands of homes flooded in Queensland

Yet another “one in one hundred years” event, as days of torrential rain has saturated Townsville and parts of north Queensland and over a thousand residents were evacuated. See the early reports from ABC here and the Guardian here. In the aftermath, hundreds of thousands of cows and other livestock have been found dead.

 

World’s Driest Desert Floods as Extreme Weather Hits Chile

‘Rains high up in the Andes mountains have led to torrents of water pouring into the Atacama desert below, sweeping away houses and roads. […] heavy rains devastated the country’s El Loa province. Flooding caused six deaths and destroyed nearly 100 homes […] The disasters are part of a pattern of increasingly extreme weather in the country’ – Bloomberg report

 

Latest News and Data

 

Plants and soil absorb less carbon dioxide under a warming climate

We all have an image of the Earth becoming more lush as carbon dioxide levels rise. However, worryingly, a study recently published in ‘Nature’ suggests the opposite. Researchers found that under a warming climate, rather than absorbing more greenhouse gas emissions, plants and soil may start absorbing less, accelerating the rate of change.

 

Cause of the ‘Little Ice Age’

 

A study by UCL scientists just published in Quaternary Science Reviews presents the case that the ‘Little Ice Age’ of the 16th century was in part caused by the mass killing (mostly by disease) of native Americans, leading to substantial forest regrowth and absorption of CO2. CO2 in the atmosphere declined by about 7-10ppm over the century, lowering temperatures globally around 0.15C. The article is “Earth system impacts of the European arrival and Great Dying in the Americas after 1492” by Koch, et al. (forthcoming in March, 2019); a popular (and free) rendition of the content is available via CNN.

Another remarkable example of this effect was the forest regrowth after the Mongol invasions of Asia and Eastern Europe in the 13th and 14th centuries which ‘stockpiled nearly 700 million tons of carbon absorbed from the atmosphere. This is equivalent to the world’s total annual demand for gasoline today.’

 

Insect Apocalypse

 

In case anyone has missed it, a recent study in Biological Conservation suggests insect populations are collapsing around the world. The rate of extinction is eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles, and could lead to an insect-free world within 100 years, leading to a nearly complete ecosystem collapse. The Guardian’s report gives a good overview. (On a tangential, but important, point, a new study has found evidence that an organic diet will quickly and substantially reduce the amount of pesticides in your body.)

 

Pressure on fast-food chains

 

Agricultural emissions, including those from meat and dairy, are on track to contribute around 70% of the total allowable greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 that would the keep rise in the world’s temperature under 2C this century.

In a letter to major fast-food chains, a coalition of investors are calling on the firms, which include McDonalds and KFC, to put in place clear requirements for suppliers of animal proteins to report and reduce their greenhouse gases and their freshwater impacts.

 

Will this lawsuit bring down ExxonMobil’s culture of climate deception?

This article written by the Union of Concerned Scientists highlights how for many years ExxonMobil has lied about its support for climate change denier groups. Not only that, but the company has been deceiving its investors, falsely assuring them that its oil and gas reserves would not become unusable for economic reasons. The New York Attorney General has now filed an important fraud lawsuit against the company.

 

A third of Himalayan icecap doomed

 

Campaigners call for transport overhaul to tackle pollution

In this article in The Guardian the campaign group Friends of the Earth has called for an increase in public transport investment in the UK to combat emissions from cars.


Gigantic Cavity in Antarctica Glacier Is a Product of Rapid Melting, Study Finds

‘The cavity is about two-thirds the area of Manhattan and nearly 1,000 feet tall, according to a study released Wednesday by NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The hulking chamber is large enough to have contained about 14 billion tons of ice — most of which the researchers say melted in three years.’

Thousands of birds at risk as wetland is threatened by overexploitation

‘Doñana National Park, in Spain, is a crucial stopover point for thousands of migrating birds. However, over-intensive irrigation is threatening these valuable wetlands.’

Lemurs in Crisis: 105 Species Now Threatened with Extinction

‘At least 95 percent of Madagascar’s beloved primates are now at risk, conservationists warn.’

Campaigners accuse Redbridge Council of breaking promise to protect wildlife from lorry through road

‘Redbridge Council has backtracked on its pledge to save birds, badgers and other protected species from a road that threatens to tear through a woodland strip of Fairlop Waters Country Park, campaigners say.’

Endangered sharks being served up in British fish and chip shops, study reveals

‘Hammerhead sharks and dogfish were among the vulnerable varieties on offer in British outlets. Scientists found 90 per cent of products sold as huss, rock salmon and rock eel at chip shops were in fact the globally threatened spiny dogfish.’

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Dozens of hungry polar bears have found their way to a remote Russian island in search of food. The polar bears have been feeding off rubbish in a local dump and even walking in to houses, causing a state of emergency to be declared. Experts have been deployed to sedate and remove the bears. Shooting them is prohibited by law. Officials warn, however, that a cull may be necessary to ensure the safety of the local population, if attempts to remove the animals fail.

 

Recommended Content

 

We have heard a lot about food insecurity in the UK relating to brexit and supply chains from Europe but climate change is a much bigger threat to our food supply system. This blog post from Wicked Leeks details a report and campaign from Climate Coalition regarding how climate change is impacting agriculture in the UK.

-Matthew L.

 

Another nail in the coffin of the fracking industry’s claim to be cleaner than coal: ‘New NASA Study Solves Climate Mystery, Confirms Methane Spike Tied to Oil and Gas’. Interestingly, they find that global fires and their corresponding emissions have been at a historic low, burning ‘roughly 12 percent less acreage during 2007 to 2014, compared to the prior roughly half-dozen years’, apparently due to more effective fire suppression. Meanwhile, methane emissions from the oil & gas industry have increased substantially, accounting for 68% of the 25 teragrams added to the atmosphere every year since 2006. This increase ‘correlates closely with the U.S. fracking boom […] Leaking and venting of unburned gas — which is mostly methane — makes natural gas even worse for the climate than coal.’ – Ian

 

A good talk & booklet by Jane Morton, bringing insights from her profession of clinical psychology to how we talk about climate change. She argues that public messaging should move on from only using dry, conservative scientific findings and not be afraid of tapping into emotional responses which have a deep, fundamental role to play in decision-making. Basically, we shouldn’t shy away from describing this as an emergency, articulating the fears many feel already by telling the full truth, and using this to spur collective political action. – Ian

 

Some signs of a gradual breakthrough in honest reporting: Why it’s time to panic about climate change – an honest report from The Scotsman, and This is a crisis: Facing up to the age of environmental breakdown – a paper published by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) – Jon

 

Five maps that reveal the world’s remaining wilderness – some excellent visuals here showing the global impacts of the dominant culture on wild ecosystems. By their reckoning ‘just 23% of the planet’s land surface (excluding Antarctica) and 13% of the ocean can now be classified as wilderness, representing nearly a 10% decline over the last 20 years.’ Furthermore: ‘Between 1993 and 2009, an area of terrestrial wilderness larger than India — a staggering 3.3 million square kilometres — was lost to human settlement, farming, mining and other pressures.’ For me it shows the importance not only of conserving the remaining areas and stopping further destruction, but also the huge scale of work needed to repair the damage that has been done and the challenges of reintegrating human beings into that rewilding effort. – Ian

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Regenerative Culture / Good News Stories

 

Baby tortoises spotted

After more than a century without a single baby tortoise sighting on the Galapagos island of Pinzón, a small group has been spotted. It is hoped that these youngsters may help to pull the critically endangered species back from the brink of extinction. More details here.

 

New Rewilding Project in Australia

Inspired by rewilding projects around the world, especially in the Yellowstone National Park, an ambitious project on the Yorke Peninsula in South Australia will attempt to restore a small pocket of Australia to its former ecological glory.

In total, about 27 of 29 mammal species are believed to have disappeared from the peninsula, including keystone species which help shape the ecosystem.

In Australia, the rewilding movement is steadily gaining momentum with groups like Rewilding Australia advocating for the reintroduction of Tasmanian devils to the mainland. Research suggests that introducing devils to the mainland could help knock cats and foxes off the top-predator pedestal in places where dingoes are culled or are in low numbers.

It is hoped that re-establishing ecosystem structures will be key to curbing Australia’s alarming extinction rate.

 

Pope Francis offered $1m charity donation to go vegan for Lent

This article in The Guardian details how the vegan campaign ‘Million Dollar Vegan’ has offered to donate money to charity if Pope Francis goes vegan for lent, the 40 day period leading up to Easter in which many christians practice fasting or abstain from types of food such as meat or sweets. The pope is known for his stance on climate change through statements such as:

“Climate change is a global problem with grave implications: environmental, social, economic [and] political,” he said in his 2015 encyclical. He also told the UN in the same year: “The ecological crisis, and the large-scale destruction of biodiversity, can threaten the very existence of the human species.”

 

fun

 

“Now is not the time for speaking politely, or focusing on what we can or cannot say: now is the time to speak clearly… You say nothing in life is black or white, but that is a lie – a very dangerous lie. Either we prevent 1.5° of warming, or we don’t.”

Greta Thunberg, speaking at Davos

 

Thank you for reading this, our 13th newsletter. We’re super excited about the coming months and what they might hold. We’re also excited to welcome a whole host of new members into the newsletter team. We’re looking forward to our new writers bringing with them some fresh changes in style, tone and format – keep an eye out for changes and improvements in the coming issues!

That said, the team is still far from full-capacity – if you’d like to get involved in helping put together future editions, join the newsletter hivemind by emailing xr-newsletter@protonmail.com.

Get in touch with the same address if you have any questions or queries.

 

This newsletter was written collaboratively by a hivemind of 12 rebels.

 

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As we enter this crucial and potentially final phase in human history, our Rebellion will need money to make sure our message is heard. Anything you can give is appreciated. Please visit our Fundrazr page.

Alternatively, standing orders or money transfers should be made to our Triodos Bank Account (Sort code: 16-58-10 Account No: 20737912) in the name of Compassionate Revolution Ltd (the holding company for Rising Up!).

Alternatively, if you’re a PayPal user (or more comfortable with PayPal), PayPal payments can be made to info@risingup.org.uk.

For queries contact Dave Nicks (dave.nicks@btinternet.com).

Newsletter #12 – Spring is Coming!

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Web version here

Welcome to the 12th Extinction Rebellion newsletter!

January, and with it the process of root-growth and foundation-laying, is coming to an end. As we move into February we’re getting ready to start an exciting new chapter for XR which will see a return to high-profile public actions in the build-up to our International Rebellion in April.

The meta-strategy review process is set to conclude in the next few days and will inform plans for national weeks of action set to take place in late February and late March. In the meantime, rebels won’t be short of things to do. Street parties, event-swarming, and much more are coming up in February (see Upcoming Activity below), not to mention the many regional and solidarity actions which we haven’t even had the time to keep up with!

If you’d like to get involved with making it all happen please see our newly refurbished volunteers page for available roles or get in touch with your nearest XR group.

Check out what’s on near you with our full list of upcoming events, available to view on our website, rebellion.earth/events. If you’re new, or have not already seen it, remember to check out our Campaign Overview Document.

If you’d like to look back through the newsletter archive, you can find it here.

Contents

  • Recent Activity
  • Upcoming Activity
  • International Highlights
  • Announcements
  • Extreme Weather
  • Latest News and Data
  • Recommended Content
  • Regenerative Culture/ Good News Stories

 

Recent Activity

 

Strategy and Structure

After many meetings, a weekend-long feedback session in Stroud, more meetings, a national feedback-session in London, and plenty of online feedback, the Strategy Team is now just a few days away from announcing the overall XR Spring Strategy. Major action in April is guaranteed, but the final strategy document will address questions of what, how, when, and where, along with finer points of tone and nuance.

For more details on the strategy process please see the latest internal newsletter.

If you’re struggling to keep up with internal developments in XR you might be pleased to see that the Mandates Team has drawn a beautiful map of the various Working Groups and sub-groups.

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Edinburgh Rebellion Day

XR Scotland kicked off the Rebellion with a creative action on January 25th, otherwise known as Burns Day. Forty Rebels posed as tourists taking a tour of Holyrood, the devolved Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, before occupying the debating Chamber for over an hour. Holding a symbolic Citizens Assembly in the Chamber, the group discussed the climate and ecological emergency and drew attention to the urgent need for a response from the Scottish Government which would be commensurate with the scale of the problem.

No arrests were made, instead the Rebels were peacefully escorted from the Chamber by police through a side entrance to the building where they were greeted by hundreds of supporters cheering and applauding the action.

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The Scottish Rebellion has now been organising for several weeks and the occupation of the chamber in Holyrood was an excellent kickoff to future peaceful and impactful action.

 

Earthstrike

On January 15th Extinction Rebellion joined fellow campaigners in Parliament Square for the launch of Earth Strike, a new movement aligned with XR’s motives and methods. Earth Strike is calling for a globally coordinated international general strike to protest against every national government’s criminal failure on climate action. This also happened to be the day that the Members of Parliament were voting on Theresa May’s Brexit deal, so the square was already crowded with Brexiters and pro-E.U. supporters.

Extinction Rebellion members led an impromptu march of civil disobedience around Parliament Square, marching past parliament and blocking traffic. They chanted the words: “No Brexit on a dead planet! No E.U. on a dead planet!”, underscoring the irrelevance of the media-consuming Brexit saga in the face of the global climate emergency.

Reactions ranged from the completely bewildered to the highly supportive and proceedings concluded with spontaneous singing and dancing in Parliament Square.

See here for footage.

 

NVDA Training of Trainers – Germany

Three XR UK NVDA Trainers recently instructed fourteen budding Rebels in Germany. Having only started at the end of November in the wake of the London actions, XR Germany already has an impressive twenty-one groups set up across the country.

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The three-day training, co-hosted by Skills4Action, an organization which has trained activists in direct action for over ten years, hosted attendees from cities across Germany. Actions are already taking place on the February 3rd with plans being made for April 15th – International Rebellion Day.

 

We’re looking forward to working increasingly with XR groups in Germany and across the world. Sharing skills and building communities is how we will win.

 

Korean Coal Protest

On January 24th XR joined Korean civil society groups alongside other UK activists outside the Korean embassy in a show of solidarity against an expanding coal industry in East Asia.

The South Korean Government is one of the top coal power financiers in the world. Financial institutions controlled by the Korean Government are funding huge new coal plants in Vietnam and Indonesia. Despite the Paris Agreement, the objections made by local communities, and President Moon Jae-In’s promises, coal is thriving in Korea.

The protest lasted several hours, and gained coverage from various Korean news networks.

 

Other Actions:

Stroud:

A community group, including members from XR Stroud, are taking Gloucestershire County Council to court over the award of a £600m incinerator contract.

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XR Rebels blocked access to the incinerator early in the morning on January 11th. They also recently spoke up in a Stroud District Council budget meeting.

Cambridge:

Extinction Rebellion Cambridge confronted Cambridge University stating that it is time the University stops investing in and working with fossil fuel companies as well as the banks that fund them.

XR Groups around the country are continuing to hold weekly meetings, climate cafés, and talks on such subjects as ‘Heading for Extinction and What To Do About It.’ Find your local group and see how you can get involved!

 

Upcoming Activity

 

First Saturday Street Party – London, February 9th

 

Saturday, February 9th 2019

Time 11: 30am – 2.30pm

Gather at Dalston Kingsland Station at 11:30am

Extinction Rebellion is throwing a street party in Hackney on Saturday, February 9th, and we would love any Londoners to join us. It will be the first in a series of Saturday Street Parties which will give a platform to local groups to discuss environmental causes that affect their area.

Extinction Rebellion exists to directly address the government’s inaction in the face of global climate and ecological collapse. The day will be centred around addressing local issues within this broader narrative.

The week after the action we will hold one of our ‘Heading for Extinction and What To Do About It’ talks (Monday February 11th, at SET, Dalston Lane, London E8 3DF, time TBD) and will discuss the realities of climate breakdown and the impending sixth mass extinction event.

The Street Party itself will serve as a community-building exercise. We want to bring people together in an act of lighthearted, low-level civil disobedience, with a variety of musical performances interspersed with brief discussion of environmental issues.

Building strong and sustainable community groups will be the basis of this movement. Reaching out to local London communities is the priority of the Street Party and we will emulate the positive change we want to see through our actions.

Come join us in Hackney and help inspire the area to stand up for the environment.

See event page for details.

 

Bristol Saturday Street Party – February 14th

 

The week after the first of these Saturday Street Parties is slated to get going in London, XR Bristol will be hosting their first event to reclaim the streets of Bristol in a family-friendly atmosphere. The event will take place on Saturday, February 14th, starting at 1pm, and will be part of a wider day of action.

See the event page for details.

These actions will help set the stage for our International Rebellion in April, where thousands will occupy the streets. We hope to see many more participants in the build-up to the big day!

 

Disrupting Fashion Week – February 17th

 

The fashion industry is one of the most culturally influential industries in the world. It is also one of the most polluting and is deeply reliant on agriculture and petrochemical products. It applauds our unsustainable lifestyles and the toxic pace of our waste culture; we should no longer be impressed or enthralled by this.

Is fashion out of fashion? This “business-as-usual” industry is stuck in a tired routine. Couldn’t it be done better, with something other than consumption at its heart?

All cultures need to collectively wrap their heads around the crisis we are in and end business-as-usual. It is time to use the public influence of the fashion industry to build momentum towards this movement of civil disobedience and our International Week of Rebellion in April.

With service and love in our hearts we will disrupt Fashion Week. We will swarm the streets, slow down those racing between shows, and spread the message of Extinction Rebellion. Join us.

 

Youth Strike for Climate – February 15th

 

Youth engagement with the climate and ecological emergency is taking off around the world. In the last week we’ve seen 30,000 students across Europe protest by skipping school following the lead set by Greta Thunberg. In Berlin alone, 35,000 took to the streets to demand agricultural revolution.

Children and parents from across the UK will be joining this wave of protest on the February 15th with fourteen locations listed so far and more still to come. This is not an official XR event but we encourage anyone who cares about the future of our children to participate.

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International Week of Rebellion – April 15th

 

You know it’s coming – but do you know if you are? The International Rebellion beginning on April 15th has the potential to be a pivotal moment in world history – we’ll need as many people as possible to be present on the streets and helping to organise. Book time off work – ideally the whole week from the 15th – and share the event on Facebook to make sure that we can bring as many people as possible to participate in what could be humanity’s last and best chance to avert catastrophic damage to the planet.

 

International Highlights

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Without a doubt one of the biggest highlights from around the world this week was the beginning of the Rebellion in the United States.

On Saturday, January 26th, a large black banner emblazoned with the words ‘Climate Change = Mass Murder, Rebel for Life’ was draped over the famous golden statue of Prometheus at the Rockefeller Center Ice Rink. As dozens of people held signs aloft the rink was taken over with several Rebels staging a die-in in the shape of the Extinction Rebellion symbol.

Police had followed hundreds of protesters as they marched from Columbus Circle in New York to Rockefeller Plaza where Fifth Avenue was shut down for a period of at least twenty minutes. Nine were arrested and released five hours later.

This was a critical day of civil disobedience for this movement held with the aim of changing United States government policy on climate change. Leah Francis, an XR organiser in Portland, Oregon, told Rolling Stone, “We are all going to die, and we need to shout it from the rooftops.”

The message was indeed shouted from the rooftops of many American cities on Saturday. A banner with the same message as that in Rockefeller Center was lowered from a bridge in Los Angeles and demonstrations also took place in Washington D.C., Seattle, Chicago, the San Francisco Bay area, the Twin Cities, Philadelphia, Austin, Kentucky, and Denver.

For further coverage of the action see the article in Rolling Stone Magazine.

See more photos of actions across the USA here.

 

Announcements

 

Fundraising

The fundraising team is thrilled to present our new crowdfunder for the International Week of Rebellion commencing April 15th.

We would also like to share this introduction to fundraising as a local group.

The fundraising team has ambitious targets to support the forthcoming rebellious events and activities. We need any helpers who can seek out and contact potential donors and can manage our ongoing relationships and partnerships. Please contact xr.fundraising@gmail.com if you can spare some time and tenacity!

 

How to show your support for XR defendants at their trials

Central to XR non-violent direct action campaigns is the willingness shown by some of those involved to face arrest, criminal charges, court hearings, fines, and possible imprisonment.

The legal process is therefore very much a part of XR’s campaigning and many of our defendants are willing to use their hearings in court as a way of publicising the reasons why they decided to act as they did. They may, for instance, issue a ‘defence statement’ for publication, give interviews, etc.

Other XR activists can get involved. Court hearings often start at 9:30 am but may continue for the entirety of a day. One way of demonstrating support for our defendants on the day of their trial is to be outside of the courthouse together between 9:00 and 9:30 am. It is also sometimes possible for supporters to attend the public gallery during the trial proceedings.

We will soon be publishing lists of those trial dates and the times during which the defendants have given their consent for this to happen.

At present we have, that we know of, defendants in Bristol, London, and Manchester. Any defendants with trial dates in other parts of the country, please get in touch. If you are a defendant and would like us to help organise support and publicity on the day of your trial, please contact: xr-legal@riseup.net

 

XR Blog

XR Blog is always looking for more content. We would love to hear from you, including, but not limited to, diaries from XR actions, science-based pieces on ecological breakdown, political pieces on citizens’ assemblies, or analyses of the toxic mainstream media. XR Blog is a democratic platform for all ‘voices of the rebellion’ – and that means you! We are happy to receive submissions from experienced and inexperienced writers alike.

Additionally we are excited to announce some regular features, new for 2019. Firstly, we have ‘Affinity Group Stories‘ – we would like to hear about the journeys of affinity groups, beginning with their formation, through training and action, all the way to arrest, detention, and trial. We would love accounts from people of diverse backgrounds within AG’s. Please write in with your AG Stories.

Secondly, there is the ‘Children of XR‘ feature – we are already in touch with some great young people who have spoken at XR events and have engaged in campaigns related to XR. This feature will be a regular bundle of news from young people around the world who are based in XR and related movements, particularly the Strike on Fridays movement associated with Greta Thunberg.

Our third feature is ‘The Rise of the Right‘, tracking the relationship between ecological breakdown and resource scarcity with the rise of right-wing populist governments around the world.

Fourth, we are thrilled to announce our ‘XR Write-A-Long‘ feature, which will be an ongoing fiction piece written by all of you! Details to follow soon.

Finally, we have listened to many people in XR who would like to explore and strengthen the ten principles and values which have led us so well already. In response, we will soon be running a regular feature around the P&V, starting with Number One, which is: ‘We have a shared vision of change‘. Send all submissions and enquiries to xrblog@protonmail.com (mailto:xrblog@protonmail.com)

 

International support team – volunteers needed

The more localised the Rebellion is the more powerful it will become. In the International Support Team there is a focus on supporting national groups and their rebellious activities in order to be as effective as possible. At this stage of the Rebellion there is a lot of work to be done in assisting with the formation of new groups and supporting the national initiators as they recruit more group members and establish themselves as a viable national group. Please contact vejde@riseup.net if you think you can help.

 

XR Festivals


Thank you all so much for the enthusiastic response to our call for festival contacts. We requested these contacts to enable the XR Festivals Team to maximise our impact at festivals over the summer. We are still trying to open doors at a few key festivals and are again requesting your help. If any Rebel has contacts within the following festivals then we’d love to hear from you so that we can start the dialogue:

Wood, Love Saves the Day, Field Day, OceanFest,  BeatHerder, Blue Dot, WOMAD, Boardmasters, Beautiful Days & Vegan Camp-out

Please email us at XR Festivals at xrfestivals@gmail.com – many thanks in advance.

A little further down the line we will also be looking for Rebels to help us deliver our movement-building work at these and several other festivals. More information to come soon.

 

Local declarations of climate emergency

Across the globe Extinction Rebellion groups are persuading civic authorities to declare a State of Climate Emergency. Visit https://www.cedamia.org/global/ to find resources which will inspire you to get your local town or county council involved in this action. A critical mass of declared councils will put irresistible pressure on central governments.

 

Extreme Weather

Extreme weather hit 60 million people in 2018, no part of the world spared (UN News).

Melting Arctic ice is now pouring 14,000 tons of water per second into the ocean, scientists find

Heavy snow brings chaos and death to Austria and Germany

Greenland’s ice melting faster than scientists previously thought – study

Cuba: Three dead, 174 injured in Havana tornado

It could be warmer above the Arctic Circle than in Chicago by Wednesday this week. [And: How frigid polar vortex blasts are connected to global warming.]

‘Code Red’ – Australia is experiencing such high temperatures that bats are dropping from the trees.

Menindee fish kill: another mass death on Darling River ‘worse than last time’: Australian Greens Senator Sarah Hanson-Young calls for a Royal Commission over water management in the Murray-Darling basin, as the mass fish kills pile up (twitter: https://twitter.com/sarahinthesen8/status/1090025384828055557). Hanson-Young claims that the mass deaths are the result of water mismanagement and global warming-induced drought.

2018 was ‘the 4th warmest year on record,’ according to the World Meteorological Office’s report, ‘State of the Global Climate in 2018’. Furthermore, ‘the past four years – 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 – are also the four warmest years in the series.’

 

Latest News and Data

 

Greenpeace and Amnesty International unite in push for greater civil disobedience. This is a landmark conference in which two of the world’s largest non-governmental organizations have joined together in the fight against climate and ecological collapse. Also significantly, Extinction Rebellion is cited as one of the motivators for these two organisations to call for an increase in civil disobedience to push for the systemic change we need.

Founders of plastic waste alliance ‘investing billions in new plants’

Nottingham aims to be first carbon neutral city in the UK

Scotland could be net-zero for greenhouse gas emissions by 2045, according to a new report.

Gina Hanrahan, of WWF Scotland said, “It’s crucial MSPs, who are about to start debating the new Climate Change Bill, confront the challenge head on and join the growing number of progressive nations by setting an iconic net-zero target and speeding up the policy action needed to end our climate change emissions once and for all.”

California’s most famous butterfly nearing death spiral

The debate is over: The oceans are in hot, hot water – ‘the oceans are warming 40 percent faster than many scientists had previously estimated.’

Is this a farewell for the Indus dolphin? – ‘The Sindh government [in Pakistan] is planning a pre-feasibility study regarding straightening 180km of the Indus riverbed, falling between Guddu barrage downstream and Sukkur barrage upstream.’

Dahr Jamail’s latest Climate Disruption Dispatch: ‘We Are Destroying Our Life Support System’ – all of the latest horror stories plus an unexpectedly beautiful correspondence with Stan Rushworth near the bottom.

 

Recommended content

 

The Transformative Power of Climate Truth: Ecological Awakening in the Trump Age, by Margaret Klein Salamon, Founder and Director of The Climate Mobilization.

“I’ve just read this essay and found it to be illuminating and inspirational in the face of so much depressing news. As a practising yogini I was interested to see that Salamon refers to Gandhi, who ‘pioneered the strategy called ‘Satyagraha’ or ‘truth force,’ which carries intimations of love and inner strength.’” – Marian

 

This Could Be The Biggest Scandal Of The Climate Change Era” (article)

In this opinion piece in the Huffington Post, Sandrine Dixson-Declève and Anders Wijkman point the finger of blame at politicians and economists – the former for their delays and constant wrangling, and the latter for failing to acknowledge the severity of climate change – for the situation we now find ourselves in.

 

Redacted Tonight interview: ‘Rebelling Against Human Extinction’ (video) with Rory Varrato – lots of great analysis and discussion of the XR movement and the potential for bringing it to the US.

 

In Facing Mass Extinction, We Must Allow Ourselves to Grieve (article/chapter)

An excerpt from Dahr Jamail’s recent book, The End of Ice: Bearing Witness and Finding Meaning in the Path of Climate Disruption. A powerful urge to bear witness to the destruction of the planet as if we were attending to the deep sickness of a loved one; another writer giving up on hope and looking instead to grief and the necessity of action, regardless of the likelihood of success.

 

Climate Catastrophe: The Case for Societal Transformation, The Case for Rebellion‘ (Live lecture, Norwich)

Those who were moved or intrigued by last week’s recommendation of Rupert’s, ‘This civilisation is finished, so what is to be done?’ may be interested in a live lecture, in which Read presents a vision beyond the limited hopes of the Paris Agreement, presenting practical responses and inciting courage in us all. The lecture will be followed by a Q&A.

 

Regenerative Culture/ Good News Stories

Bonding and bridging in London’s poorest borough – George Monbiot writes on how the foundation Every One Every Day has improved the social life for residents in Barking and Dagenham by opening shops on the high streets for people to use as social hubs and “maker spaces”. From working kitchens and sharing tools to creches and chicken schools these spaces give locals hope for future generations.

With the help of 200 volunteers St. Nick’s has been transformed from a landfill site into a nature reserve in the centre of York. The site is now used as a base from which projects and services are run to help the residents of York move towards a sustainable future. The project is now looking to recruit more volunteers.

A court in the Hague has upheld a historic ruling, ordering the Dutch government to accelerate carbon emissions cuts. This ruling will “put the wind in the sails of a raft of similar cases being planned around the world.”

Above and below the Great Australian Bight – a photo essay

Stephen Moss writes in The Guardian about the organisation A Focus on Nature (AFoN), whose mission is: “to connect, support and inspire young people across the UK with an interest in nature and conservation, and provide a voice for the youth conservation movement.”

Investors urge KFC, McDonald’s and Burger King to cut emissions

Germany is set to close all 84 coal-fired power plants and will rely primarily on renewable energy! Coal plants account for 40% of Germany’s electricity; over the next 19 years, Germany will be switching to renewable energy, which will provide between 65% and 80% of the country’s power by 2040.

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“Each of my 3 middle school years were the 3 hottest years ever recorded on our planet.” – Jeremy Clark

 

Thank you for reading this, our 12th newsletter. We’re super excited about the coming months and what they might hold. We’re also excited to welcome a whole host of new members into the newsletter team. We’re looking forward to our new writers bringing with them some fresh changes in style, tone and format – keep an eye out for changes and improvements in the coming issues!

That said, the team is still far from full-capacity – if you’d like to get involved in helping put together future editions, join the newsletter hivemind by emailing xr-newsletter@protonmail.com.

Get in touch with the same address if you have any questions or queries.

 

This newsletter was written collaboratively by a hivemind of 9 rebels.

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As our eagle-eyed readers will have noticed in Announcements, we’re now raising funds with a brand new Fundrazr. The mechanism may be new but the facts remains the same; if we’re going to achieve our aims in April, we’ll need money to pay for arrestee support, transport and accommodation for protests, art materials, banners, fliers, personal expenses, etc. The scale of the Rebellion could be limited by the amount of money available.

If you would like to support the Rebellion though other channels, a regular standing order would be perfect (as would one off donations). Standing orders or money transfers should be made to our Triodos Bank Account (Sort code: 16-58-10 Account No: 20737912) in the name of Compassionate Revolution Ltd (the holding company for Rising Up!).

Alternatively, if you’re a PayPal user (or more comfortable with PayPal), PayPal payments can be made to info@risingup.org.uk.

Any queries contact Dave Nicks (dave.nicks@btinternet.com).

Internal Newsletter 2

Inside XR #2

Hi all,

After a regenerative festive period, XR is getting back into gear!

For now the main emphasis throughout our movement, at all levels, is on strategy – from individual working groups to the immense meta-strategy process. This latter will culminate tomorrow, in the National Meetup, where people from all parts of the UK and XR will discuss the proposed strategy for April.

Concurrent with strategy, the progress of XR’s structural development has been beautifully illustrated, accompanied by an equally colorful spreadsheet listing email addresses and mandates, all of which should help both members of the public and XR alike to better understand how we organise.

In more material terms, XR members have been involved in a number of solidarity actions, including Earthstrike and the disruption of the Global Coal Resources general meeting, while our first major civil disobedience event for the year is due to take place on the roads of Hackney on February 9th.

Like many others, though, the actions team is waiting for the conclusion of tomorrow’s meta-strategy process before planning too far ahead. With this in place, it won’t be long at all before XR is back in the public eye – and hopefully it won’t be too long after that before the UK leads a radical shift in humanity’s relationship with the environment!

Strategy

After dozens of conference calls and hundreds of email exchanges, our strategy and stewardship groups were finally able to spend a weekend together in Stroud to discuss XR’s strategy for the coming months. Thanks again to Springhill Co-housing for allowing us to meet in their beautiful space! Not only were we able to discuss different aspects of the strategy in more detail but we also worked on redesigning our organisational structures and decision-making processes and connected with each other, living the regenerative culture that we now need more than ever.

The session in Stroud was followed by a smaller meeting on Wednesday which brought together all that had been learned hitherto, and where strategy representatives began to finalise the process into a document now available here, which will be presented and explained by the same representatives tomorrow. Following this presentation, all in attendance will be encouraged to give feedback; the strategy team will then meet the following Wednesday to discuss this feedback and make any necessary changes to the strategy outline before formally concluding the process.

Last weekend’s strategy meeting in Stroud. Photo credit: Maia Kenworthy

Internal news

Actions, Art and Logistics

The actions, arts, and logistics working group is currently re-forming. They are working on creating documents which will help us decentralise and integrate new members to build the teams that will work on actions over the coming months building toward April 15th and beyond. In terms of a realistic and regenerative approach we have decided all major XR actions will have at least a month lead-in. As well as eagerly awaiting the conclusion of the meta-strategy process which will guide the work of this working group going forward, we are gathering ideas for actions from a range of experienced and creative artists and activists, and being inspired by the local groups around the UK and the world who are taking creative XR actions almost every week. These will all feed into a creative visioning meeting amongst artists and activists within this working group to design the next phase of actions which will again inspire this movement through our collective power. Through our actions we will try to outreach to new groups, create mass economic disruption, and vision the future we want to see in the world. Some will be aimed at one of these, and some at all three.

M&M

Social media

Our Social Media team have been working flat out this week to scramble getting the word out for sudden events coming up, from solidarity protests for the Wet’suwet’en anti-frackers in Canada, to more protests against Jair Bolsonaro outside the Brazilian Embassy, to court solidarity support for Conscientious Protectors (arrested for blocking a London meeting to plan a new coal mine in Bangladesh). As new people hear about us our followings are continuing to grow by around 500-1000 every week or two. However, an even more interesting development is a whopping ONE HUNDRED new people signing up as “Going” to International Rebellion Week EVERY DAY, bringing the total to over 1,500 already. If this continues at the same rate we’ll be at over 10,000 by April – but with the actions coming up and more effort going into spreading the word, we know this will start to grow a lot faster… We’re excited to see how many we can get! We’ll see you on the streets in April, rebels. Tell all your friends!

https://www.facebook.com/events/126622414898833/

Stat-lovers, see this week’s analytics report here.

Press

The press team, like many others, is looking to expand in response to increasing demands. Concurrent to this we’re continuing to handle inquiries and requests from news organisations of all shapes and sizes; we’re also working on proactive strategies for creating coverage in the coming months, such as getting XR-written articles into major newspapers, working with strategy teams to ensure rapid press reactivity, and building the informational infrastructure to be ready for April.

Spokes and Notables circle

We are gathering all the amazing work that has already been done and trying to bring some coordination to future work! We are responsible for preparing people within our movement to speak to media and at events on behalf of XR. We also reach out to people who we would love to speak on behalf of us – from social justice activists to climate professors to rock climbers to A-list celebrities. As and when we make contact with ‘notables’, we are responsible for integrating their involvement (through public support to donating to being arrested!) into XR. It’s going to be a BIG YEAR both for notables joining XR and also for us needing MANY XR people ready and trained to talk to press so – if you would like to join this team please email sam.j.knights@gmail.com

Regen

The Regenerative Culture UK National Working Group has now appointed several sub-group leads meaning that integration, conflict resilience and Action Regen are all maturing, thanks to Joanna, April and Jasmine!

Regen is bringing together Local Regen groups from across the world to begin having weekly introductions and trainings starting this week. As well as this, Regen is offering emotional debriefs and sharing spirals to those who were arrested and are facing court due to involvement with XR actions in London (the next debrief being on Monday Jan 21st at 7pm).

Furthermore, Regen is in contact with several groups who will be offering trainings in Privilege Awareness, Restorative Circles & Sustaining Groups – venues being booked and dates announced soon & publicised via social media.

If anyone is interested in feeding into Regenerative Culture, you’re most welcome: we are running intro to UK National online calls weekly for the next month or more – please email xr.regenerativeculture@gmail.com if you’re interested in attending.

Finally we want to give our huge gratitude to everyone for their continuing love of each other and the earth, standing bravely in the face of uncertainty.

Legal

The legal team is continuing to expand and develop as new volunteers join the group. We have now begun to support defendants through court trails and hearings. We are also working on improving our communication system in order to better support arrestees and defendants. At the same time, we are developing a legal strategy for XR and trainings for legal observers around the country.

We continue to seek contact with anyone who has been arrested at an XR action. If you haven’t been in touch with XR legal please send an email at xr-legal@riseup.net

Talks and Trainings

The latest version of the Heading for Extinction talk is out! If you’re one of our speakers and need the updated materials, please email xr.talks.trainings@gmail.com. Our NVDA training team went to Germany to learn from the champions about how to spice up our trainings. Speaker trainings on how to give the Heading for Extinction talk are now being organised around the country, with a focus on England and Wales, but online trainings are also being provided for rebels who live a bit further off so again, please get in touch if you would like to attend them. As a result, there are now more trained speakers around than ever before – so if you need one for a talk in your local area, or if you want to organise an NVDA training, please fill out this online form. Finally, a first series of meeting facilitation trainings has been set up in Manchester, Bristol, London and Exeter.

Communities

Along with all of the strategy processes, two wonderful feedback processes have been held: the external questionnaire, analysed here, finds a generally very positive perception of XR, with one of a few points for improvement being the information flow which this newsletter is hoping to help with. The internal questionnaire, summarised here, found some similar themes (e.g. “the overwhelming amount of information balanced with the lack of communication”), together with heart-warming positives. The overall feedback testifies to a willingness across XR as a whole to listen to itself and learn from its errors.

Integration

The integration team is currently developing regular online induction sessions, a Rebel Starter Pack, a phone banking system to enable us to reach out to our database to let them know about April 15th, and an automated email system to direct rebels to their local groups. We’ve also started posting volunteer roles on the website. More info about all of this here.

Newsletters

Readers may have noticed that the internal newsletter is back(!). We’re looking to regularise the output by getting a steady system so that all of our wonderful WG contributors can get into the groove of sending in their sections.

Meanwhile the external newsletter is working on expanding its team and formalising its roles. It would also like to announce a new Announcements section – if you’d like something publicised through this platform (such as a call for volunteers, or the revelation of a new initiative), please get in touch with xr-newsletter@protonmail.com. See here for our latest issues.

Tech

A UK tech team has been forming over the last month or so. Work is now starting in earnest to form teams focused on specific technological areas, such as External Communications (use of emails/etc), internal communications (use of Basecamp and other instant messaging tools), website (looking at major updates to the website and possible support to local groups), data and GDPR (making sure our data kept about individuals is clean, and that we always respect our responsibilities regarding data-protection law). We hope that, through this work, we can facilitate the other teams in XR to be more effective at their work.

Actions, events and gatherings strategy

The Action, Events and Gatherings group has recently been formed, following the disbanding of the coordinating group. This restructuring promises to be exciting, though there are challenges during the transition period.

We’ve been looking at ways to maintain forward momentum whilst continuing to further decentralise, which isn’t easy during an intense campaign. We’ve also been considering action proposals as well as strategy up to March 2019. Proposals so far have included fracking, aviation, coal etc: all issues close to our hearts. We hope to be able to support ongoing campaigns whilst also maintaining the momentum vital to carry us towards our goal. What’s also essential now is how we develop our feedback mechanisms, so that regional groups can input on that strategy rather than have it dictated to them top-down. We are all looking forward to seeing how 2019 unfolds as we continue to take action on a variety of fronts.

Finance and Fundraising

The finance and fundraising team have been on-boarding a whole host of new folks and, without listing them all here, it’s especially a great relief to have Rob Quinn coming on board to play a CFO type role, (but let’s call him the Big Cheese of Cheese), and Lorraine Langhard to bring in more cat-herding coordination energy as well as submitting applications for grant funding. We will be launching a new crowd-funder in the early new year and a number of us are talking to potential donors. Money is relatively low right now.

Political Strategy

Set up following a meeting on 2 December 2018, the Political WG has not yet agreed a mandate but the overarching themes it has been developing are: Building a “Political Taskforce” – to influence the political and NGO field in the UK and internationally, bringing in Global South voices, to enable a message to be communicated of deep collaboration for the XR Demands. To be done in liaison with Movement WG and Actions WG; Scrutiny of whether an effective Citizens’ Assembly on Climate Emergency (CACE) can be held before April 15th, commissioned to be carried out by Sortition Foundation (subject to funding); using contacts to get to the negotiating table with government officials on XR Demands; building a “psycho-spiritual” grouping that has the capacity for political manifestation; building a model of “democratic accountability” through sensing/understanding the emergence of XR Local Groups and their needs; creating an expert advisory board which includes Kate Raworth, author of Doughnut Economics and colleagues of Jem Bendell who wrote the “Deep Adaptation” report; sub-groups are formed (CACE sub-group) and forming (Political Taskforce, Psycho-Spiritual, Advisory Board).

 

General Climate news

This week, as temperatures broke through existing records in multiple locations across Australia, on the other side of the world 1200+ Belgian students took part in school strikes to demand action on the climate crisis. Meanwhile, Hitachi became the second company in two months to cancel the construction of a nuclear power plant in the U.K., throwing the country’s energy strategy into crisis.

Briefing: Reaching Net Zero Emissions by 2025 — is it possible?

 

It’s a core part of our second demand, and we get asked it a lot; this week, Nuala Mai Gathercole Lam examines the possibility of a carbon-neutral 2025.

There’s a mainstream discourse about what it would take to go carbon neutral by 2050 or to halve emissions by 2030 — but XR’s target of net zero emissions by 2025 is markedly more ambitious. Is it possible?

The Received Wisdom on Political Will

When reports attempt to map out the road to zero emissions political will is factored in as a major obstacle to making the necessary changes quickly (for instance by 2025), as opposed to more gradually (like by 2050). Demanding zero emissions by 2025 means rejecting the received wisdom that only limited reductions are possible. Instead, the ambitious goal of 2025 must drive research and the adoption of technology.

Rapid shifts in the organisation of society are possible — the Second World War saw the repurposing of factories, retraining of large numbers of women to staff the factories, rationing of limited resources and a massive localisation of food production. What looks like a realistic time frame for going carbon neutral changes when we look at the scale of change that has taken place in the past.

Steps to Reach Net Zero Emissions

The Climate Mobilization are a U.S.- based organisation working to generate a rapid and wide- reaching response to climate change. They work with a time frame of reaching zero emissions within the next ten years. This is what they think it would take:

  1. Emergency economic planning measures to reach zero emissions
  2. A fair shares rationing programme as a means to improve energy efficiency in an equitable manner
  3. Investment in ‘negative-emissions’ technology to remove carbon from the atmosphere
  4. Comprehensive changes to our transport systems including increased public transport options and transition to electric public transport
  5. Replacing industrialised agriculture with localised farming with limits on livestock farming
  6. Restoration of ecosystems to halt mass extinctions and turn ecosystems into carbon sinks

The Technology

Many of the technologies referenced in less ambitious predictions are already in existence in some form. For instance, according to this article in Nature, the cost of producing solar energy has fallen by 80% in the last decade and Morocco, Mexico, Chile and Egypt are now able to produce solar power at a lower cost than natural gas. A report co-authored by Future Earth and Sitra says that 50% of new capacity for generating electricity is renewable, with wind and solar capacity doubling every 4 years. Storage systems are needed in order to make a 100% renewable electricity grid a reality and the cost of these utility-scale lithium-ion batteries is falling rapidly as demand increases. Finally, hydroponic farming has the potential to reduce emissions through the efficient use of electricity and water resources as well as reducing the carbon intensive transport of food associated with centralised industrial farming.

Whether or not 2025 seems like a realistic goal depends largely on whether or not you factor in substantial political change. Extinction Rebellion exists to shift the Overton window and generate political will for addressing the climate crisis — this is a key part of the puzzle and we have the tools solve it!

Photo credit: Derek Langley/XR/Cambridge

Thanks for reading this week’s internal newsletter!

To see the previous issue, see the archive. If you have any queries or suggestions, please contact douglasrogers95@gmail.com.

Let’s get ready for a Green 2019!

XR Newsletter Archive #11: Get ready for a green 2019!

Happy 2019, and welcome to the 11th Extinction Rebellion Newsletter!

We’re hitting the new year running, with an incredible number of events happening all over the country. The main theme for January will be the laying of foundations and preparing for the coming Eco Spring, as reflected in the many planning meetings happening regionally and nationally (see Upcoming Activity for more), together with a bumper crop of socials, training events and talks.

That said, things won’t be too quiet on the actions front either: we’ve already seen several solidarity actions over the festive period (see Recent Activity), and are expecting many more between now and mid-February when we’ll be returning to the streets in (non-violent!) force. We’re also looking forward to rebellions in several major US cities at the end of this month – stay tuned!

If you’d like to get involved in making it all happen, please see our newly refurbished volunteers page for available roles.

Check out what’s on near you with our full list of upcoming events, available to view on our website, rebellion.earth/events. If you’re new, or haven’t already seen it, remember to check out our Campaign Overview Document.

If you’d like to look back through the newsletter archive, you can find it here.

Let’s make 2019 go down in history as the year we, the people, changed the game on climate change!

Contents

 

  • Recent Activity
  • Upcoming Activity
  • Announcements
  • Extreme Weather
  • Latest News and Data
  • Recommended Content

Recent Activity

Action at Global Coal Resources Annual General Meeting

(Note: Group of men huddled together to the right of the picture are shareholders locked out of the meeting)

On the 28th of December, Extinction Rebellion joined Reclaim The Power to support the Phulbari Solidarity Group and disrupt the Annual General Meeting of Global Coal Mining Resources. The company has been trying since 2005 to begin work on an open pit coal mine in the Phulbari region of North West Bangladesh. By the company’s own admission, the project would immediately displace 40,000 people. Detailed reports of the project have shown that as many as, “220,000 people could be displaced over time as mining operations drain the water from wells and irrigation canals in the area.”FOOTNOTE: Footnote The project could pose a huge threat to some of the world’s largest Mangrove forests, the Sundarbans, listed as a Unesco world heritage site.

If the mine is built, it would lead to the forced displacement of up to 230,000 people over the 36 year life cycle of the project. It will increase poverty, water pollution and will plunder 14,600 hectares of Bangladesh’s most fertile and productive agricultural land in the region, causing a crisis of food production. It will have a devastating impact on the people and the environment. In return Bangladesh’s government would gain nothing but economic exploitation”, stated Dr Rumana Hashem of Phulbari Solidarity Group.

The three Extinction Rebels who blocked the entrance to the building inside the lobby successfully stopped major shareholders, including GCM’s Head of Corporate Affairs Brian Mooney, from attending the AGM. After standing outside for over three hours with the rest of the Phulbari supporters chanting and singing, the shareholders gave up and decided to leave.

The three arrestees were later removed by police, arrested for aggravated trespass, and charged with £4000 worth of damages. The Rebels were proud to have joined and supported the Phulbari people and will fight the charges with the support of all groups involved.

For more info on the day please read the Phulbari Blog summary, or a personal account from XR’s Tim Jones.

Rebel starts the Year as we mean to go on

 

 

On January the 2nd a Rebel in Exeter started the year with a bang, spray painting a Barclays Bank with black powder paint, reading, “Frack Off! #XR”. He was arrested for criminal damage, with a court date to follow in January.

Barclays Bank is notorious for its continued investments in a number of fossil fuels. In the UK, a subsidiary of Barclays Bank is the majority shareholder of Third Energy, a company pursuing multiple fracking operations in Lancashire. Every action we take helps this movement grow stronger, and draws further attention to the climate emergency. We are grateful to Matt, the Exeter Rebel, who was arrested for taking a stand against this twisted system that seeks financial reward in the destruction of our planet.

With Love and Rage, the fight goes on.

 

Man arrested in Exeter after anti-fracking slogan scrawled on Barclays Bank

First Court dates for November arrestees

 

 

Last week, Extinction Rebels attended their first court dates in London and Manchester for actions they took as part of the November 2018 Rebellion. These preliminary hearings were the start of a process that will see the UK legal system seek to punish those brave people for actions they took to draw attention to the climate emergency, and force our government out of its inertia in the face of the sixth mass extinction that is underway. All of us here at XR cannot express enough our gratitude to these people who are dedicated to preserving this planet as it is. Thank you to all of those who have stood up and continue to stand up for climate justice!

The vast majority of those arrested in November, including all those arrested on the bridges, are yet to hear anything about their arrests. We will keep you updated with any news on those who have been charged, and those still waiting to be.

 

Upcoming Activity

Preparing for 2019 – XR UK Strategy Meet Up

19th – 20th January

Register here

In 2018 Extinction Rebellion went from a handful of people planning in a room to some of the biggest acts civil disobedience in decades. It’s clear why – the climate and ecological crisis is beyond dire – and rebellion is now both necessary and justified.

Thousands of people are now involved and we’re inviting all of you to come to the first UK meet up in London on the weekend of the 19-20th January. The weekend will consist of three things:

1. Take the time to meet each other, and share our stories, hopes and fears. Understand what has brought us all to this point of action. Learn what we are all contributing around the country – this movement requires a lot of work, but we will get there by doing it together.

2. Inputting into the Strategy Process for how we are going to win in April this year. Core teams of XR have been working overtime to develop new ways of working, and coordinating our plans to bring together a dramatic series of mass civil disobedience events during the International Rebellion, starting from 15th April. You can ask any questions and feed ideas into the strategy process via small group discussions.

3. On Sunday we will hit the ground running with training on how to build our movement and learn the many skills which will make us both effective and humane in our plan for system change.

More details will be posted on the event page in the coming days.

Places may be limited so please book soon and bring new people from your local group or affinity group. Everyone is very welcome, whatever your background and relationship with Extinction Rebellion. If you need accommodation in London let us know at info@risingup.org.uk or xrtravel2018@gmail.com. We hope to have places to sleep – but if you can stay with friends then please do so!

In 2019 we have to go from national movement to world transformation – our children’s future depends on it. This is our intention, and are planning for it. We look forward to seeing you on the 19th.

Register here

Conscientious Protectors: skilling up for the courtroom, Sat 19th Jan

Legal training session 2:30-5pm, Central London

Polly Higgins & Jojo Mehta of Mission LifeForce will be running this session for XR and other environmental activists wishing to represent themselves in a criminal court using the Freedom of Conscience argument (as a means to ensure the court hears why direct action has been taken). Entry is free; more info HERE. Venue to be confirmed once we have an idea of numbers, so please indicate your interest on the Facebook event page.

First UK-Wide Youth Strike 4 Climate #FFF (Fridays For Future) – Friday 15th February

Supported by XR

The World’s Youth are waking up. Millions of young people are realising it’s now or never and are taking direct action in the face of the climate crisis and ecological catastrophe. Greta Thunberg’s pioneering school strikes in the lead-up to the Swedish elections last year, and every Friday since, have gained worldwide attention. Thousands of students have been doing the same in Australia.

Whether you are at school, college or university, go on strike on Friday 15th February. For some this falls on half term; join the protest anyway, with youth from across the world.

Come down to Parliament Square in London or, if you don’t live in London and would like to organise a similar event in your own city or town, please contact us at: youthstrike4climate@gmail.com

– Register your event here: https://www.fridaysforfuture.org/register

Tell the Government you’re prepared to break the rules to make change happen.

If you can help promote this event and the 15th February strike email us. Time is short – take the initiative

For updates, see the event here

 

International Rebellion Week – April 2019

In November we planted the seeds of our Rebellion; over winter we’ve been spreading roots internationally and across the UK. As spring comes, these seeds will grow into a forest. On April 15th we are calling for a global week of Rebellion, with independent local XR groups taking to streets all over the country to demand decisive action on climate change and ecological collapse.

In the meantime, we’ll be building up with weeks of action in mid-February and mid-March, and a Spring Gathering among many other events around the country. For now, we’re asking people to prepare by booking time off work for the week (or more!) following April the 15th.

More details to come in due course. Please share this with everyone you know. We’ll see you on the streets then, rebels.

We will not disappear.

We will not die off.

We will not give in.

Stay tuned for more information

See Event Page here

Announcements

Volunteering, Land Support, Festivals and Space

As our movement grows, so too does the number of ways in which people can get involved and help us to achieve our vision of a sustainable future. For this reason, we’re excited to share this new section of the newsletter, where you’ll find requests and opportunities from people across XR.

The most important thing to look at, if you haven’t already, is the volunteering page on our website. Here you’ll find a whole range of positions and roles with descriptions and the means of applying. It’s worth mentioning that the applications deadline for some of these is Friday 11th of January – so if you think you might be interested, go ahead and apply!

Beyond this page, you’ll also find various requests and announcements below.

The Newsletter needs you!

Following the departure of a deeply valued member, and anticipating a much bigger and busier new year, the Newsletter team is currently looking for new members. We’re especially looking for people with experience in writing, editing/proofing, content-sourcing, and html-based design; though enthusiasm for any of these definitely counts!

Time commitment can be as little as a few hours a week, and working remotely is very feasible.

Please email xr-newsletter@protonmail.com if you’re interested.

Regen announcement: Land Support Base and Open Homes

Hello all you lovely XR folk. We have just launched a subgroup of the core XR Regenerative Culture group for the UK under the title ‘Land Support Base and Open Homes’. In Regen we are grateful for all the positive and constructive feedback from the well-being support we have provided on actions. However, we are not resting on our organic laurels!

It’s now time to start looking at a deeper embedded support for our activists and organisers in UK society, especially land-based society, as biodiversity, and connection to the land, are essential for human physical and mental health.

We have lots of plans and intentions long-term, which everyone in XR is welcome to contribute to. For now, the practical focus is on building a spreadsheet of both land-based projects and ‘open homes’ (private homes) across the UK who are happy to provide respite, on a non-commercial basis, to those in XR who need it, be they organisers or front-line activists. Some basic respite training for hosts is in development and will be made available online.

Arrangements with land-based projects may involve some XR members doing a little therapeutic physical work in return for board and food. (A bit like wwoofing, but with more emphasis on recuperation for the activists / less working hours). We are also seeking any land-based projects that can host events or trainings on a non-commercial or bartering / work exchange basis.

Decentralisation of this strategy out to regional and local groups will happen ASAP.

 

How you can help:

* Maybe you are already sorting out something like this for your local group or area? If you want to get in touch to coordinate with this wider strategy, please do.

* The priority right now is to find people across the UK who are happy to be entered into our spreadsheet of land-based projects and open homes, so that in the lead-up to international rebellion April 15th, we already have a grounded UK network of hosts ready to accept people for rest and psychological prep before April actions. We are especially keen to facilitate city dwellers getting a break in the countryside.

* We are also seeking committed XR folk to join this working subgroup in the capacity of contacting land-based projects and asking if they might be able to help. Significant time on data entry will then be required. If you can spare a few hours per week on an ongoing committed basis, let us know.

If you have any questions, would like to learn more, or contribute to this new Regenerative Culture subgroup, please write to us at xr-landandrespite@protonmail.com

We look forward to hearing from you!

XR Festivals

Extinction Rebellion Festivals is operational! XR will be a big presence across the UK’s Festivals in 2019, and the Working Group are currently building strands that will match the variety of scales, genres and “feels” of different festivals. The creativity, passion, expression and connection to the land that festivals provide are brilliant spaces for us to train, grow, inform, support and dance together! If you are involved as a key organiser of a festival, or have a contact who is, we’d really like to hear from you. Please, can you email XR Festivals at xrfestivals@gmail.com. We also know there are lots of XR people who have experience & skills from working at festivals who we can work with to massive effect, and we’ll asking about those very soon. Right now though, so that we can manage the right part at the right time, please just contact us with festival organisers and/or those who have contacts for them please 😉

XR SPACE SEARCH

We’re looking for an XR community space!

It would be used in a variety of ways; for office and storage space, meeting and training rooms, socials/regen events and growing food (if there’s an outdoor area). Ideally, it will be in zone 1 or 2 and it should be easily accessible on public transport from central London.

If you know of an empty building or one which is available to rent please send the details (address, owner, photos etc.) to xr-spaces@protonmail.com or perhaps you could organise an empty building search with some other XR members and let us know what you find!

Please drop us an email if you want to get more involved in the project.

Latest News and Data

 

Extreme Weather

 

Recommended Content

 

This civilisation is finished, so what is to be done? (and as video)

A lecture/paper presented by Rupert Read, asking what might come after the collapse of our present civilization

Douglas: The first section is a brilliantly clear and incredibly worrying summary of the current climate crisis – the best such analysis I’ve read to date. This is followed by a consideration of what might happen in the very real possibility (now probability, in Read’s view) that we fail to face up to the challenge. Such speculation is certainly bleak, but instead of despair I found that Read’s framing provides all the more reason to fight even harder to save as much as we can of the world we love.

Are we heading for Another Mass Extinction

A BBC radio piece on our understanding of past mass extinctions – and how the current one compares

Painted As The Activist Elite: XR and Elitism

A short, sincere piece in the XR blog contemplating media portrayals of XR from a class perspective

“Everything can be explained to the people, on the single condition that you want them to understand.” – Frantz Fanon

Thanks for reading this, our 11th newsletter. We’ve got a really exciting few months ahead of us, and we’re looking forward to documenting as much as we can in future issues. Whether at a meeting room, on a street or in the cybersphere, we look forward to sharing with you our fight to save the planet!

If you’d like to get involved in helping put together future editions, join the newsletter hivemind by emailing xr-newsletter@protonmail.com.

This newsletter was written collaboratively by a hivemind of 5 rebels.

 

Can you give financial support to the Extinction Rebellion/RisingUp?

RisingUp! and the Extinction Rebellion will have many costs over the coming months including arrestee support, transport and accommodation for protests, art materials, banners, fliers, personal expenses etc. The Rebellion needs a lot of funding to start in several places across the UK at the same time and to continue into 2019. Indeed, the scale of the Rebellion could be limited by the amount of money available.

If you would like to support the Rebellion financially, a regular standing order would be perfect (as would one off donations). Standing orders or money transfers should be made to our Triodos Bank Account (Sort code: 16-58-10 Account No: 20737912) in the name of Compassionate Revolution Ltd (the holding company for Rising Up!).

Alternatively, if you’re a PayPal user (or more comfortable with PayPal), PayPal payments can be made to info@risingup.org.uk

Any queries contact Dave Nicks (dave.nicks@btinternet.com)

A Coal Mine in Bangladesh and The Superglue Three

By Tim Jones

 

Getting into bed on Thursday evening I got a call: plans for a vast coal pit in Bangladesh, 130,000 people threatened with forced displacement, a coal company’s annual general meeting in central London tomorrow morning, blocking the doors, need one more person. A fitful night’s sleep and then, suddenly, it was 9am and I was hurrying up Regent Street, still very confused. The plan was formed in the minutes or two that it took to cross Regent Street and walk to Cavendish Square where we saw a small group of protesters outside the building where GCM Resources Plc were planning to hold their AGM. My three friends each had a little tube of superglue tucked up their sleeve. They knew there were three turnstiles so I was happy to offer welfare support and be a legal observer.

We walked past the dozen or so protesters, blanking them, and straight through a revolving door. Inside the foyer (bland, pillared, glassy) we were confronted by several security guards. A second’s hesitation would have undone the whole job but with absolute composure and resolve the three gluers found a way to the turnstiles. It took half a minute for anyone to do or say anything. It took even longer for them to realise that these three angry women weren’t going anywhere. As the adrenaline flowed it was intoxicating to watch the puzzled reactions of the gym-built, sharp-suited security guards. In the end they were very pleasant. We explained what was going on and why (‘What! With superglue?’ they almost laughed, hardly listening to the why bit).

The protesters outside gave a lot of loud support. The police came and several hours of slow negotiation ensued. This was totally different to an action outdoors in a public or open space where the police had been given warning, where there were large numbers risking arrest, where there was media presence. Soon the option of the gluers leaving without arrest was removed. The manager of the building was initially diplomatic but became increasingly irate. The gluers sang, read aloud from Naomi Klein and, at every opportunity, spoke with clarity and conviction about the people of Phulbari in Bangladesh and of what climate breakdown means for us all. Some listened and nodded, then mostly stopped listening. But everyone who was there or who hears about this will have to, at some even subconscious level, reflect on what it all means. We heard that the AGM had been cancelled, although we couldn’t be sure this was true. ‘So now you can go, right?’ said the building manager. The gluers reflected calmly, with aching arms and burning hands, and decided not to self-remove but to stick it out until the Protester Removal Squad arrived from Kent.

After blocking the turnstiles for three hours they were removed by a team of very large, gentle and professional officers who came with tool kits, kidney dishes and syringes. The gluers were each carried out through a fire exit to a waiting van. It was solemn and uplifting, sacrificial and defiant.

Afterwards I was privileged to meet some of the campaigners from Bangladesh who represent the people of Phulbari. Their story should shame and terrify us all into action. Companies operating from London continue to impose colonial tyranny over the Global South, continue to accrue vast wealth to a blind and nihilistic elite and continue to burn the delicate and infinitely beautiful ecosystem that still, somehow, sustains us all. It was hugely encouraging to meet people from Foil Vedanta who, after years of campaigning, have managed to get Vedanta Resources d-listed from the London stock exchange and publicly condemned for their conduct and environmental and human rights abuses.

On reflection it would have been good to have press coverage and to have arranged live streaming but, in many ways, it was the suddenness of the action that was so effective. Some of the campaigners had bought shares in GCM so that they could have access to the meeting and thereby hold the company publicly to account. The purpose of blocking the entrance, however, was to completely shut down the meeting. So we learned something about planning and co-ordination, especially when working with other organisations. But everyone was extremely grateful for what the Superglue Three had done. A clear message was sent to GCM and those who host or support them. At the same time the composure, dedication and courage of our three rebels is a reminder to us all of a lesson I’ve always been aware of but am only really beginning to understand: that to live is to act and to act is to sacrifice.

The arrestees were taken to Charing Cross Police Station and charged with aggravated trespass and criminal damage. Solicitors came after about 5 hours, interviews were conducted and we heard that they were all fine. We waited in shifts. I had to go at 12.45am to get the last train. Two lovely people from XR had joined me for the evening and they continued waiting until nearly 3am. In the face of appalling abuses of power and the reality of present and future tragedy, it had been an inspiring day: incredible, brave, dedicated people who have been moved to act out of love and concern.

XR Newsletter Archive #10: All I want for XRmas is <2°

 

Welcome to the 10th Extinction Rebellion Newsletter!

So far, over 160 brave rebels have been arrested for taking non violent direct action. The rebellion is continuing to take root and self-organise all over the world. Find your local XR group on the map, here.

Check out what’s on near you with our full list of upcoming events, available to view on our website, rebellion.earth/events. If you’re new or haven’t already, remember to check out our Campaign Overview Document.

If you’d like to look back through the newsletter archive, you can find it here.

Contents

  • Activity Since Last Newsletter
  • Upcoming Activity
  • Extreme Weather
  • Latest News and Data
  • Recommended

Extinction Rebellion Bhopal, India.

“Let’s put climate change aside. Do you really think we can have a future on this planet after cutting down all the trees and filling the oceans with plastic? “

-Lee Camp

Activity Since Last Newsletter

Regional Rebellion Day

Saturday 15th December – as Storm Deirdre battered the country, Extinction Rebels staged peaceful actions across the regions to raise the alarm on the ecological crisis, while pressuring local councils to; declare a Climate Emergency, go carbon neutral by 2025 and create Citizens’ Assemblies to facilitate this change. A map of all the towns and cities who have already declared climate emergency is being compiled, here.

UK Extinction Rebels Take Nationwide Action on Climate Emergency

England

Actions took place in towns and cities across England including; Brighton, Newbury, Exeter, Bedford, Halifax, Totnes, Torpoint and Devonport, Swindon, Bath, Cambridge, Frome, Norwich, Truro and Preston New Road, where there was a solidarity visit to the anti-fracking protest camp, the day after an action in St Peter’s Square, Manchester.

Some of the highlights included:

Bristol

More than 250 rebels in Bristol sang subversive carols and gave speeches before marching on the city council. Some stopped on the way to chalk-spray the DEFRA building, and a tree was planted on the lawn outside the mayor’s office. Describing this tree as “the gift of life”, rebels urged the Mayor to implement strong measures after the City Council declared a climate emergency last month.

Tom Daldon, 19 from Bristol said: “This is the greatest challenge of my generation. We will continue to act together, we will not behave until we are listened to.”

Eight people were willingly arrested, allegedly for chalk spraying, including Bristol University’s Professor Colin Davis who said, “it felt good to be doing something”.

Cambridge

With a few hundred people in attendance, starting at the Grafton Centre, Angela from Extinction Rebellion Cambridge stated: “We’re holding a die-in at two shopping centres, alongside three coffins, representing the current victims of climate change, the non-human victims of the ongoing mega-extinction, and the future victims still to come”.

 

“We’re soon to march on the city council, where we will demand that they take serious measures against the climate crisis.”

Alison Green, Pro Vice-Chancellor of Arden University said: “Cambridge rages against the dying of the light. A few hundred people have turned out here in Cambridge to support the event. Lots of upbeat and powerful speeches. I’ve just done mine and people are gathering around listening with interest – in spite of the cold!

Totnes and Newton Abbot

120 rebels spread across Totnes and Newton Abbot. Dr Larch Maxey, 46, explained, “we’ve just had some beautiful singing from our choir, who’ve been singing alternative carols written by local XR members. There are 40 of us here in Totnes, and we’ve sent many more of our members to support Newton Abbot in its first XR event, where 80 people have gathered to sing and protest.

Brighton

In Brighton, where the Council also declared a climate emergency this week, Claudia from Extinction Rebellion said: “We have 12 years to make a difference – the government must declare a climate emergency now. We have 10 people singing at the Royal Pavilion ice rink and another 30 people making Extinction Rebellion snapped logo wreaths.”

“Demonstrators are going to adapt “Give peace a chance” to “Give [life] a chance”. They are also going to make a lot of noise by banging and bashing instruments for 12 minutes to represent the 12 years we have left before we go above 1.5 degree warming.”

Scotland

 

Glasgow

100 people gathered in Glasgow. Anna, 24, said “We’re meeting to rally and sing subversive carols at the Buchanan Street steps, and we’ll be giving away trees to members of the public, after which we’re planning some thought-provoking disruption based around today’s Christmas shopping”.

Actions were also scheduled for Inverness and Dundee, while XR activists in Fort William held their first meetings.

Wales

Actions took place in Carmarthen and Cardiff, while the Llandudno event was postponed due to storm Deirdre.

 

The same day, over 100 people showed up for Extinction Rebellion Nederlands’ Kick-Off Workshop in Hague.

Actions Debrief – December 15th

As the regions rebelled, around fifty rebels gathered in London to hold a debrief on the broader themes and developments within XR since Rebellion Day.

With the help of five excellent facilitators trained in Processwork, the room periodically split up into smaller discussion groups before reconvening for general discussion. There were also physical exercises – in which participants came together to create human sculptures – and breaks for silent reflection.

Though much was covered, the major themes of discussion were: ongoing efforts towards decentralisation, and how this might best be effected; similar questions about transparency (with frustrations voiced about insufficient progress in this area, and sympathetic responses citing the lack of time and resources to adapt as quickly as asked for); integration: how best to welcome new rebels into participation with XR; and the identification of a tension between a will to act quickly and preserve radical momentum, set against the desire to slow down and practice the mindful regeneration which we hope the movement is prefiguring for society.

None of these discussions had simple or immediate answers; but perhaps the basis of a solution can be found in the very process which raised the questions, and the sincere engagement and discussion which characterised the day’s event. The mood was supportive but serious, with people voicing genuine concerns as well as heartwarming personal experiences, and a consistent emphasis placed on listening and democracy. The day ended with food, music, dancing, and a celebration of how far XR has already come; we’re looking forward to similar events in the new year!

 

For more information on the development of XR moving forwards, please see our Extinction Regeneration Document.

XR at COP 24

Extinction Rebels visited Katowice in Poland for the 24th annual UN conference on climate change, COP24. We did not go to engage with the political process, which we already know to be flawed but instead to build international links of solidarity, to put forward the case for non-violent civil disobedience, and to move the conference towards an emergency framing of the climate crisis. Whilst there, we gave talks, went on marches, held meetings, organised protests, and hosted press conferences. We also disrupted a speech by Claire Perry and held our own government to account over their destructive policies. We saw President Nasheed of the Maldives wearing our symbol on the conference floor and calling for “everybody to rise up”. Indeed, over the course of the fortnight, more and more insiders grew more and more impatient and, behind the scenes, rebels from all walks of life joined the movement. We returned from COP24 strengthened in our resolve to take XR global.

The decision making of the political elite was predictably weak and reductive. In the face of their shortcomings, we find strength in our diverse, growing, and urgent movement.

Farhana Yamin – Veteran climate negotiator and adviser to small island states, said; “We pay tribute to activists, students, civil society and the leaders of vulnerable countries who are rising up all over the world demanding more. We need now to work together to build an emergency coalition focused squarely on tackling climate devastation.”

Check out; the hashtag, #DispatchFromCOP24 for more reports from Katowice. This interview with Democracy now, this street rally with XR presence and Greta Thunberg’s devastating speech to the UN plenary.

Politicians discussing our future.

-Isaac Cordal

XR at the London Assembly – December 6th

On December 6th, the Greater London Assembly deliberated a motion by Caroline Russell (Green Party) that urged the Mayor “to declare a Climate Emergency, supported by specific emergency plans with the actions needed to make London carbon neutral by 2030”. The motion followed successful precedents set by councils in Bristol, Stroud, Totnes, Frome, Trafford and soon to be followed by Monmouth and Brighton (keep up to date here).

Extinction Rebels were on site bright and early to welcome assembly members as they arrived for the plenary. Our presence outside City Hall was highlighted by Caroline Russell. In her summing up, she told the Assembly that “protesters are demonstrating … they’re just exasperated that we’re not taking these risks seriously”. The motion passed with minor amendments and early in December, Mayor Sadiq Khan declared a climate emergency, announced measures to protect people from the effects of climate change, and accused central government of “dragging its feet” on these issues.

Upcoming Activity

21st December – RECLAIM THE BBC

 

The BBC belongs to the people and retains its duty to present to the people the unbiased facts about the things that affect our lives. They have been remiss in this duty. The Climate Crisis is catastrophically affecting people all over the world. It is the issue of our time and the BBC’s reporting should reflect that.

On the 21st December, XR will be demanding a new age of information: the BBC must lead in mobilising the nation against the greatest threat of our times. It must be a source of integrity in the face of climate emergency, as it was during WW2, when our lives were at stake, as they are now. Then, the BBC sounded a rallying cry for unity in the face of annihilation and it must do so again. We have time to affect the climate situation, but it won’t work without the media. The BBC belongs to the people, so let us remind its staff of that fact.

The XR London will take action at BBC HQ, Portland Place, London, while rebels will also be gathering at regional BBC outlets in Manchester, Bristol, Sheffield, Cambridge, Birmingham, Glasgow, Truro, and hopefully even more than this. There will also be in action outside the BBC in Berlin!

Organise in your local and regional groups, go to your local BBC offices with clear messaging about your demands. This will be our first action at the BBC. We’re disrupting production for a day, to highlight these vital issues, not to cause distress or offend BBC staff. So, we suggest sitting, lying down, singing, organising speakers and talking with BBC staff and the public about our message, all non-violently of course. The mission of the day is to educate and highlight with beauty, clarity and love, not to alienate or offend.

In the meantime, feel free to flood the BBC’s feedback inbox, if you’re of a mind to: https://ssl.bbc.co.uk/faqs/forms

 

For useful information, see our press release.

More information on suggested messaging, here

If you can’t find the answer to your question from these documents, or from your local network, then please email: extinctionrebellion@risingup.org.uk for support with this action.

Upcoming Activity

USA Plans National Day of Action

26th January, 2019

The UK’s Regional Day of Rebellion came as Extinction Rebellion New York held its first meeting in preparation for a National Day of Action in the USA, on 26th January, 2019. This will feature as a key part of the build up towards International Extinction Rebellion Week, which will start on the 15th April 2019, worldwide.

15th April, International Rebellion Week

In November, we planted the seeds of the rebellion in London. From those seeds we need a forest. The task ahead is monumental, and we must build strength to rise to the challenge. Through the winter, our roots have grown and spread throughout the UK and overseas.

We will not disappear. We will not die off. We will not give in.

Come the spring, regenerated, prepared, and ready, the rebellion’s first leaves will break through the soil and into the light. On April 15th we are calling for a global week of rebellion, with independent XR groups taking to the streets all over the world to demand decisive action on climate change and ecological collapse.

More details to come in due time. For more information about our regeneration period and upcoming plans, please see the regeneration update on our website.

Join the national media network – a message from the media team

Hi Rebels,

We are in the process of setting up a network to connect Media & Messaging working groups across XR. There will be regular calls and a sharing group, where people can discuss media, messaging ideas and content.

If you would like to be involved, please liaise with your local group and put forward a Media & Messaging rep. Send their name and email to pressxr@risingup.com. We’ll be in touch with more details.

Extreme Weather

December 5th – 5 people were rescued from cars trapped by flooding in Carmarthenshire.

December 7th More flooding hit south and west Wales, closing roads and flooding homes. A man died after his car crashed on the M4.

December 10th – Winter snowstorm Diego killed at least three people in N Carolina, left hundreds of thousands without power for days, and stranded hundreds of motorists in their cars.

December 11th – Localised flooding caused widespread traffic disruption across B.C.’s South Coast.

December 13th – Flash Flooding killed at least 13 people in Vietnam. 12,000 hectares of crops were destroyed and 160,000 animals were killed.

More flash flooding trapped 100 motorists on the Hume freeway, Victoria. Floods hit Melbourne, Sydney, Ballarat and across Australia’s East Coast as Tropical Cyclone Owen approached.

In the US, streets were closed by flooding in Charlestown.

December 14th – Heavy rain collapsed an embankment, flooding a housing complex in Bekasi, Jakarta.

December 15th Storm Deirdre brought heavy snow, ‘freezing rain’ and gales to the UK, causing widespread disruption, road closures and left thousands without power across Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Roads were also flooded and trees uprooted in Plymouth, Dorchester, across Sussex, Cumbria where 9000 people were left without power and Devon & Cornwall where flooding temporarily closed the Eden project. The storm caused multiple car accidents around the country including 4 people who were hospitalised in a serious collision near Moffat.

A Sun City resort in Johannesburg SA was evacuated after a severe hailstorm brought flash flooding

In the US, flooding closed roads across Fairfax county, Maryland, Virginia as rainfall in the DC area broke a 100 year record

Antalya Province in Turkey was flooded after heavy rain, stranding motorists and pedestrians.

December 16th -. A woman was rescued after driving into flood water in Florence, SC, where the water is 3ft high and still rising.

At least one person was killed after being swept away by flash floods which swept away cars in Queensland, Australia, as a second front of severe weather followed in the wake of Cyclone Owen. A crocodile warning was issued after the large reptiles were spotted in the floodwaters.

Parts of Semenyhi, Malaysia were struck by flash floods.

December 17th – Almost 50% less rainfall during the northeast monsoon has led to drought affecting at least 120 out of the 176 talukas in Karnataka, India.

The Met office issued another yellow warning for severe rain and possible flooding in the UK. Roads flooded across Cornwall. Fire crews were called to multiple homes flooded across Sussex.

Severe weather slammed the East and West coasts of the US, causing high waves and flooding.

December 18th – Extreme weather toppled 6 lorries on a P&O ferry between Scotland and Northern Ireland and ran a Russian cargo ship aground off the coast of Cornwall. 6000 homes without power in Ireland, where roads were flooded and trees uprooted. The river Ardle burst its banks in Perthshire, causing major flooding which closed a school and left roads impassable.

A teenager was found dead two days after being swept away by flashflooding in Cha-uat district, Thailand.

The mild inconvenience of the rebellion’s disruptions is as nothing compared to the unbridled fury of mother nature. Our thoughts are with all the victims of these catastrophes and their loved ones. These disasters are happening more frequently and getting worse. We are out of time.

Latest News and Data

 

75-80% chance of El Niño in next three months: World Meteorological Organisation

Severe drought in southeast Alaska, ordinarily one of the wettest locations in the US.

The list of extreme weather caused by human-driven climate change grows.

Insurance claims linked to global warming are set to surpass $15 billion this year.

The Arctic Ocean has lost 95% of it’s oldest ice.

There has been a 50% Hike of Record-Dry Months in Africa’s Sahel.

India cancels plans for huge coal power stations as solar energy prices hit record low.

The Stansted 15 have been convicted under anti-terrorism laws.

Shadow Chancellor, John McDonnell has pledged to support oil and gas.

Hungarians rally against slave law.

Greta Thunberg’s full speech in front of the UN plenary at COP24.

Trump’s Energy Advisor Runs Away When Questioned By Democracy Now! At COP24.

Fracking halted in Lancashire (again) after largest earthquake so far.

Two more arrests at Colne Valley after a #StopHS2 activist locked on to a bulldozer.

6th Gilets Jaunes have been killed in France.

Suggested:

Reading/Watching/Listening

 

 

Can you give financial support to the Extinction Rebellion/RisingUp?

RisingUp! and the Extinction Rebellion will have many costs over the coming months including arrestee support, transport and accommodation for protests, art materials, banners, fliers, personal expenses etc. The Rebellion needs a lot of funding to start in several places across the UK at the same time and to continue into 2019. Indeed, the scale of the Rebellion could be limited by the amount of money available.

If you would like to support the Rebellion financially, a regular standing order would be perfect (as would one off donations). Standing orders or money transfers should be made to our Triodos Bank Account (Sort code: 16-58-10 Account No: 20737912) in the name of Compassionate Revolution Ltd (the holding company for Rising Up!).

Alternatively, if you’re a PayPal user (or more comfortable with PayPal), PayPal payments can be made to info@risingup.org.uk

Any queries contact Dave Nicks (dave.nicks@btinternet.com)

Photo credit Terry Matthews

As we come to the end of the year, we’d like to give a massive thanks to everyone reading this for all your support; it’s been an amazing, exhilarating few months so far and we’re only just getting started. We wish you a regenerative Christmas period, and we look forward to making 2019 go down in history as the Year of Rebellion!

Love and Rage,

The XR Newsletter Hivemind

This newsletter was written by a hivemind of 7 rebels.

We leave you with with a festive poem contributed by Jonathan Fishwick:

Christmas is coming

The Planet’s feeling ill

So many species dying

a killing field they fill

For people who are sleeping

your World is facing hell

The devil’s planned a party

he’s invited you as well !

Christmas is coming

Extinction’s on the way

But hope can always find a voice

and have the final say

The wind of change is blowing

Rebellion’s in the air

The XR drum is beating loud

a call to those who care

Christmas is coming

We’re called to do what’s right

to open up our grieving hearts

then stand and make a fight

The masses they are rising

non-violence is their cry

to smash the walls of greed and hate

with love their alibi

Christmas is nothing

It’s meaningless and cold

to a planet that is dying

a billion years evolved

So let us take this moment

to honour in our hearts

what moves us to rebellion

till death us all do part