Breaking News -Four Youth Strikers arrested in London for obstruction of highway

Photo credits: Snowflake Foxtrot

Fourth arrest:

Policeman, picking him up: ‘Are you okay?’

Young man approx 14 years old: ‘The planet is not okay, and that’s what matters.’

Policeman: ‘This isn’t going to help the planet’.

Me, with at least 10 other cameras around filming: ‘His voice is being heard, that’s what matters’.

Words: Snowflake Foxtrot

Students, Sunrise and Rebels unite to defy extinction

Originally posted here: https://theelders.org/news/students-sunrise-and-rebels-unite-defy-extinction

On 15 March students from around the world will join a global Youth Strike for Climate, leaving school and college to demand that their leaders urgently take climate action. In this guest blog Farhana Yamin, CEO at Track 0 and Extinction Rebellion Activist and Jake Woodier, an organiser of #YouthStrike4Climate explain why.

Politicians beware. Young people are demanding answers from governments to some tough questions.

  • Why have scientific warnings about the climate and ecological crisis been ignored for so long?
  • What emergency actions can now be put in place to stop the extinction of life on Earth?

Tired of the apathy and denialist campaigns funded by vested interests, young people are taking to the streets and joining new social movements that are demanding solutions be put in place in 10 years or less.

That timeframe more or less matches the 12 year deadline given by the United Nation’s chief scientific body, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). In October 2018, the IPCC spelt out the consequences of what a hotter more disruptive climate would look like. Unless we cut global greenhouse gases emissions by 50% in the next 11 years, billions of people would be exposed to increased storms, wildfires, droughts, floods, acidified oceans and sea level rise which would result in water and food shortages and mass migration.

Students strike for climate in London in February 2019. (Photo: Socialist Appeal/Flickr)

Fearing for their future and acting out of solidarity with their fellow global citizens, this week hundreds of thousands of young people are expected to walk out of schools and colleges to join the school strike movement. They are inspired by 16 year old Greta Thunberg, who in August 2018 stopped going to school on Fridays to sit outside the Swedish Parliament and demand climate action. Since then, thousands of young people around the world have joined the Youth Strike 4 Climate movement with campaigns now active in around 71 countries. In Belgium, around 50,000 children and young people take to the streets every Friday. The UK’s student movement is gathering momentum. The first national strike resulted in 15,000 students and young people ditching classrooms to demonstrate a need for radical and urgent action to achieve climate justice for current and future generations. 

Anna Taylor, 17, co-founder or the UK Student Climate Network which is coordinating the mobilizations explains:

“The burden of holding powerful actors to account over their climate records has unfortunately fallen on the young. We’ve been betrayed by the climate inaction of previous generations. We’re having to rise up and fight for those around the world already suffering the devastating effects of climate change, and for our very futures.”

The youth led Sunrise Movement rally in San Francisco in December 2018. (Photo: Peg Hunter/Flickr)

Long held attitudes of moderation are now woefully insufficient given the global climate emergency we all face. From the “Green New Deal’s 10 year plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to zero in ways that generate clean jobs, supported by the youth-led Sunrise movement and championed by Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, to the Extinction Rebellion’s campaign of mass civil disobedience to dismantle the toxic systems that are putting all life on Earth at risk, it is clear that the desire to build a more inclusive society based on respecting nature’s boundaries is beginning to reshape politics.

No-one knows what will happen and no-one can say for sure whether or not fundamental ecological tipping points have already been breached. The good news is that there are millions of people – old and young – who are mobilising around the world to stop humanity from falling off a cliff.   

Extinction Rebellion protest at Oxford Circus, London in November 2018 (Photo: David Holt / Flickr)

We can and must succeed in catalysing a peaceful revolution to end the era of fossil fuels and economic systems based on the extraction and extinction of nature. Life on Earth literally depends on it.

That is why we will be supporting students on strike and all those working to defend life on Earth. As citizens around the world join together to courageously speak truth to power, we hope you will give your full support to strikers and rebels where ever you are.

Views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Elders or The Elders Foundation.

Potatoes and Football

By George Palen

In the game of football, no one ever grows potatoes. Not only is this a true fact, but no one is surprised by this fact. The rules and objectives of football simply do not allow for the planting, watering, weeding, and harvesting of potatoes. Everybody knows this. You would be laughed off of the field if you brought a hoe, some gardening gloves, and some seed potatoes onto a football field at the beginning of a game.

Similarly, in the game of western culture, Mother Nature is not supported. The rules and objectives of western culture, whereby individuals pursue as much wealth and power as they can, simply do not allow for the support of Mother Nature. And thus we should not be surprised that life on Earth is going away. Indeed we have seen how people in support of life on Earth have been laughed out of corporate board rooms, swept into the streets where their voices have no seat at the decision making table.

We are playing the wrong game. I refuse to play football. I would surely get hurt if I did and besides, the score at the end of the game is meaningless. Society should stop embracing the game of “get rich and powerful”. People just get hurt and the score at the end of the game is meaningless. Instead the rules and objectives of our society should support life. Let us change our game. Let us change our culture. Let us support life on Earth.

XR Glasgow Report

By Ian Paterson

Extinction Rebellion Glasgow formed in November 2018, and took our first actions the following month, including disrupting Christmas shopping by swarming in Style Mile shopfronts, and forcing BBC Scotland to close their front doors due to our Reclaim the BBC demonstration.

 XR Glasgow aren’t where we want to be yet, but things are starting to come together and we are on track to deliver a strong contribution during the International Rebellion of 15th–19th April 2019. Affinity groups are forming, with XR Glasgow students organising a Youth Strike on Feb 15th, and XR Glasgow is staging a mass action on March 2nd. So far in 2019, a wide variety of activities have already taken place…

Ae Fond Rebellion.

You may have seen XR Scotland’s Rabbie Burns inspired action, in the news recently too, as XR members occupied the Scottish Parliament and conducted the UK’s first ever Citizens Assembly on Burns Day, the 25th of January, with crucial contributions from XR Glasgow members.

I don’t actually know any Burns poems to quote to you and find the language archaic but I’m quite a fan of social commentator and poet, Gil Scott-Heron. He famously said “the revolution will not be televised” but I’m beginning to wonder if he was right about that, as News outlets seemed quite keen to broadcast our recent action at the Scottish Parliament.

Fun Fact: Gil Scott-Heron’s dad played football for Celtic FC in Scotland and was the first person of colour to do so.

You may take our lives, but you’ll never take our treedom!

When faced with the destruction of trees and natural habitat, to make way for building developments on Otago Lane close to her home, XR Glasgow member Cheyenne was quick to react and form alliances with a local ‘Save Our Lane’ group.

“The main criticism involves the destruction of a vital green area that is home to native wildlife such as otters, kingfishers and bats. The area is part of Glasgow’s Green Corridor and hence should be considered a protected nature conservation area. The initial application stated that trees of a certain maturity and height will not be cut down. However, this was not adhered to”, Cheyenne told me.

Glasgow is known affectionately as ‘Dear Green Place’ and wider Scotland fondly referred to as ‘Caledonia’ – the name given to this area by the Romans, due to the vast expanse of woodlands in our region. Sadly we’ve seen our forestry systematically destroyed to a tiny fraction of the size it once was.

As the old song by Dougie MacLean goes: ‘Caledonia, you’re everything I’ve ever had’, yet still we destroy her namesake. Come to think of it, ‘Dear Concrete Jungle’ doesn’t have much of a ring to it either.

Rebel & Rejuvenate.

Of course, a hard day of action requires time to reflect and rejuvenate and with XR Glasgow’s new ‘Book/Craft’ gatherings, people are able to come together, talk, listen and conduct vitally important talking and making therapy with one another.

“We need to form bonds and care for each other as well as planning actions and creating resources”, group creator, Anna, reflects. “It might also be a focus for people who don’t feel any of the Working Groups are calling to them just now, or are trying to work out how they want to get involved”, she goes on to say, so this event provides a welcoming and inclusive outlet for further discussion.

Youth Strike 4 Climate.

It’s true also, that some of the younger members, along with their families, have found our way of working hard to fit in with the demands of daily life. XR Member Sapna has developed an inspiring initiative to combat this however, with ‘Wee Rebellion’, an event attended by 250 parents and young people.

“It’s really difficult for parents, teenagers and children to get to meetings in the evenings but because of the way most people’s work schedules function, it’s the obvious time to have meetings to talk about issues and plan actions. Wee Rebellion will attempt to be a space for parents, children and young people to talk to each other about how they can engage with XR and to generally raise awareness about climate change with the hope of finding shared vision for change. At our first event, among other activities, there will be a discussion space for adults asking what are the barriers to participation for caregivers and what strategies can we collectively come up with to overcome them”, Sapna tells me.

Less nuisance, more news sense.

Although there are challenges to overcome, fortunately it’s now fairly easy for me to keep abreast of environment news, thanks to the new ‘Glasgow St’ online briefing paper. The brainchild of XR member Thomas, ‘Glasgow St’ has clear principles, which set it apart.

Being over-reliant on traditional media for your climate news may not be the wisest decision. With climate lobbyists and business interests attempting to influence the agenda, we must analyse and scrutinise it ourselves. G-Street’s wiki approach allows for a collective learning experience, which I’m sure will prove valuable to the whole XR movement. Users of Medium – take a look and contribute.

To keep in touch with XR Glasgow, like us on Facebook, follow @ScotlandXr on Twitter, and @xrscotland on Instagram. Sign up for our mailing list by emailing xrglasgow@gmail.com. From February we will meet weekly on Tuesdays at 7pm at the Kinning Park Complex.

 

 

 

Teach-In Week at Manchester Uni announced to raise awareness over climate change

We did not seek permission to re-post but consider it ‘fair use’ to re-post in full and credit the original source. Please get in touch if you are the original author and would like the post altered or taken down -The Editors.

 

A new initiative aimed towards expanding students’ understanding of climate and sustainability issues is set to take place between the 18th and 22nd of February.

Promotional material distributed to advertise the cause stresses the need to demand ‘climate justice’ and ‘take back our education’.

The four-day movement aims to encourage teaching on climate change-related matters, through a collaboration between academics and students.

Teach-In Week encourages a refusal of the current university curriculum, attempting to encourage a discussion over putting more powers into the hands of students in determining the content of their studies.

Organisers of the event claim that the intention is not to disrupt courses and lecture content, but rather provoke a meaningful debate over the true purpose of a university education.

Lizzy Haughton, the Activities and Development Officer at the SU, who is behind the cause, pointed to the Youth Strike 4 Climate campaign in Switzerland and Germany, that saw over 30,000 students strike over the failure of their degree programmes to adequately educate themselves and their peers over the planet’s future.

In an email explaining the cause, Haughton argued that students had to be ‘shown the way’ in regards to such issues. Identifying a 12-year estimate for dealing with climate breakdown before facing human extinction, Haughton was clear that the issue was not whether “they [students] care enough”, but “telling them that they have to care”.

Haughton herself is involved in the Extinction Rebellion movement, that seeks to achieve radical change and sometimes controversial methods, including the welcoming of arrest.

The objective of overhauling government and economic policy in regards to environmental issues has developed a new branch as it enters grassroots involvement in university education, with possibly transformative effects.

For those looking to get involved with Teach-In Week, there are weekly information sessions up until the event itself, held every Tuesday from 3-4pm in room 1.3 of the SU.

Those interested are also encouraged to contact Lizzy Haughton at elizabeth.haughton@manchester.ac.uk, or alternatively, Ryan Woods, at ryan.woods@postgrad.manchester.ac.uk.

XR NZ NEWS: Invitation to composting of the RMA this morning

This was originally posted here: http://www.voxy.co.nz/national/5/331049

We did not seek permission to re-post but consider it ‘fair use’ to re-post in full and credit the original source. Please get in touch if you are the original author and would like the post altered or taken down -The Editors.

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

On Friday morning the Resource Management Act will be composted outside the Canterbury Mayoral Forum by protest group Extinction Rebellion. Spokesperson Julie Thompson said “There’s a climate and ecological emergency and we want Canterbury mayors to make acting on this an absolute priority.”

“The Resource Management Act has repeatedly failed to safeguard Aotearoa New Zealand’s environment so it needs to be transformed into an Ecological Protection Act. Currently the RMA even excludes climate change concerns.” she continued.

Thompson says “We are asking the mayors to take the leadership and moral responsibility that their position demands. They need to tell the truth about the ecological and climate crisis and stop using the RMA as an excuse for bowing to developments that sell out, concrete over, pollute and mine our life support systems in the name of private profit.”

Extinction Rebellion members and supporters will be on the road outside the Copthorne Hotel as mayors arrive to the forum. They will be adding pages of the RMA to garden waste, food scraps and wood chip to make a large mound of compost. A native tree symbolising an Ecological Protection Act will then be planted in the top of it.

“Cities across the world, including London and Vancouver, have now declared climate emergencies and have committed to zero carbon by 2030. We urge the Canterbury Mayors to follow suit, to lobby central government for an Ecological Protection Act, and be guided by participatory democracy for all of this.” Says Thompson.

“To declare a climate emergency is a crucial first step to show a change in priorities, to take wellbeing of people and planet seriously. Now is the time for courage to care for what’s most important to life. If need be, the grassroots will show our elected representatives what that means,” she finishes.

XROtautahi has notified the Mayors, and is hopeful that specific attendees might speak on the issue.

Extinction Rebellion Ōtautahi is part of an international movement declaring rebellion against government for criminal inaction on the climate emergency. In December they turned off Environment Canterbury’s water supply in protest of decisions made around water and broader environmental protection in Canterbury. About fifteen Extinction Rebellion groups have become active in Aotearoa NZ since October 2018.

USA NEWS: Last Saturday, Extinction Rebellion sent a message heard ‘round the world: Cut carbon dramatically or face the consequences.

People rose from Los Angeles to Chicago, from DC to Austin, demanding that their governments declare a climate emergency and get us to zero emissions by 2025. (Click here to see a roundup of protests around the country.) And New York led the way with style. Hundreds marched. Dozens of people blocked traffic and staged die-ins, and we dropped a giant banner over the Prometheus statue at Rockefeller ice rink to let people know that climate change = mass death.

Every single one of you played an integral part in the success of this action. Whether you painted a sign or organized outreach, got arrested or supported those who did—YOU grew this movement. YOU helped us reach thousands of people. YOU helped us get media attention (we were covered in Rolling StoneNBCABCDaily NewsPix11 and elsewhere!) And YOU can keep this movement going.

We don’t have much time to act, and if we’re going to do this, it’s going to take all of us. So get involved! We have a worldwide week of action coming up on April 15th and we need it to be bigger and bolder than anything we’ve done or seen before.

 

What can you do?

 

  • ATTEND our events in the “Looking Forward” section below.
  • Can’t attend in person? Email nyc@extinctionrebellion.us to get plugged into one of our working groups. Or start an XR chapter where you live. (We can help!)
  • DONATE money to fund the resistance—and to help with jail fees for our friends who got arrested.
  • SPREAD THE WORD. Host a house meeting and get your friends, family, and coworkers involved. (Email nyc@extinctionrebellion.us to host!)
  • SPEAK THE TRUTH: In every conversation, every political action, every demand you make, tell the truth about the climate crisis. Don’t settle for anything less than zero emissions by 2025.

The scientists have spoken and the people are rising. In cities and towns across the world we are planting the Extinction Rebellion flag, showing the world we will not idly stand by while the earth burns. This is just the beginning. Join us!

 

Looking Forward

In a few short weeks, we have created community bonds, organized a successful mass meeting, and created an amazing action together. Now we need to look to the future and determine how to organize to sustain the momentum our planet needs.

We are currently in process of expanding the movement in NYC, including making it easier for everyone to get plugged in and scheduling weekly meetings. We need all hands on deck to make mass mobilization possible, and we need you to jump in anyway you can. Stayed tuned for info on how to do that. In the meantime, here are some upcoming events to get involved in:

Sunday February 10th  4 – 7pm – We will be hosting a potluck dinner! We need to celebrate what we have accomplished in an incredibly short time, and look to the future. There will be time to get to know each other and share good food, as well as (fun!) XR activities. Stay tuned for more details.

Starting next Wednesday February 6th @ 6pm –  This will be the first of our bi-weekly art making parties. Location: 545 5th Ave, 2nd Floor, Brooklyn – Email: xrnyc.art@gmail.com for more info.

International Rebellion Week – Starting April 15th – Get the ideas flowing for actions! As we re-build and grow, we will be looking forward toward the week of April 15th and being a part of actions all around the world.

 

Questions, comments, concerns? Email us at nyc@extinctionrebellion.us

Go to our website and sign up to get involved in working groups, and to stay up to date on the latest news –  XR NYC

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