UK Newsletter 18: Just one day to go! Get Ready for This!
August 26, 2020 by XR Newsletter
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It is all happening this weekend!!
All across the country, action plans are being fine-tuned, props are getting a final layer of garish paint and the final zoom calls are reaching their check-outs full of excited anticipation.
Rebels in their local and regional groups are kicking off the Rebellion with a long weekend of civil disobedience, starting this Friday. This writer for one, can’t wait to see what you have planned!
It’s not too late to join your local group and get in on the action.
After what we’re sure will be a spectacular weekend, we will come together in Cardiff, Manchester and London on 1 September. Disrupting key powers and Parliament until they back the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill and set up a national Citizens’ Assembly (here’s why).
Find (nearly) everything you need to know for this Rebellion in this action pack. Get all the latest updates and plans as they unfold: join the UK-wide Broadcast and the local broadcast groups for Manchester, Cardiff and London. And read on to get an overview of what’s happening.
The pandemic isn’t over. We need to take care of ourselves and each other, make sure you maintain social distancing, wear gloves and a mask, and bring hand sanitizer. (And check out this handy kit list)
In these challenging times, not everyone will be able to join us on the streets and our Rebellion will look different from previous ones. But fear not – you can take action from home! Check out that really useful action pack again: if you want to get started now, message and call your MP to get them to back the bill.
And keep an eye on your inbox, as our small team will be working around the clock to bring you the story of the Rebellion as it happens. (If you can help as a writer or with building emails, get in touch at email@example.com)
Read this week’s issue below to get all the latest updates and get into the disobedience disposition, with inspiration from Ocean Rebellion launching its first waves of change in Falmouth Harbour, fake blood spills in Trafalgar Square, a massive victory in Durham and a recount of the Seattle protests in history corner.
If you’d like to see previous newsletter issues, you can find them here.
This Rebellion needs your support. Anything you can give is appreciated:
Back the Bill
1 SEP | Westminster, UK
Photo: Ruth Davey
The coming Rebellion won’t just be about making demands outside parliament. It will be about passing legislation inside it.
The Climate & Ecological Emergency Bill will be introduced to MPs on 1 September and is a proposal to have our 3 demands turned into law. It has been developed by a broad coalition of scientists, rebels, activists and organisations including the campaigners behind the Climate Change Act.
If the CEE Bill becomes law it will require our government to…
- Act with urgency to limit global heating to 1.5°C (not rely on future tech to save the day)
- Conserve forests, soils, and ecosystems both here and overseas
- Establish a Citizens’ Assembly with real powers to decide how we cut emissions
- Reduce our entire carbon footprint, including emissions from our imports and exports (46% of UK emissions are emitted overseas – current policy is to ignore this until 2033!)
But to become law, the CEE Bill will have to pass through a series of ‘readings’ where both MPs and Lords get to vote on whether it reaches the next stage.
The more MPs that back the bill, the more pressure there is on the government to give it scrutiny in parliament, and the quicker it can jump the hoops to become UK law.
So tell your MP to back the bill! Phone or message them as part of this digital action. Visit their constituency office. Tell your neighbours and local media why this bill is so important.
9 AUG | Trafalgar Square, London and Worldwide
Photo: Talia Woodin
The steps of Trafalgar Square turned red with fake blood, and the fountain neon green, as rebels declared an Indigenous Emergency in London. Banners displayed the motto ‘Genocide = Ecocide’. People painted their hands red and green to highlight the plight of indigenous tribes in Brazil. Actions also took place in Leeds, Portugal, Turkey, and the US. Five rebels were arrested.
706 indigenous people have died from Covid-19, with nearly double the mortality rate of the general Brazilian population. Indigenous tribes face a battle for their rights with Bolsanoro’s government. The Coalition of the Indigenous Peoples of Brazil (APIB) said “We denounce [the federal indigenous health service’s] lack of transparency and institutional racism and demand respect for our rights.”
Indigenous tribes’ first contact with foreign infectious diseases (including influenza) was during the European colonial invasion in the 15th century, which wiped out 92% of their population.
You can donate to APIB so they can buy food, medicine, and hygiene materials.
Sort Your Ship Out!
18 AUG | Falmouth Harbour, Cornwall
Photo: Guy Reece
The ship, registered in the Bahamas, enables wealthy residents to dodge taxes and environmental and employment laws. Its greenhouse gas emissions alone are responsible for melting over 200,000 square metres of sea ice annually.
The rebels, in a flotilla of boats, projected films and slogans onto the ship’s hull, including ‘FUCK THIS SHIP’, ‘SHIP OF FOOLS’, and ‘THE WORLD IS DESTROYING OUR WORLD’.
Ocean Rebellion is the new, seafaring sister of Extinction Rebellion, seeking to engage with global high seas stakeholders to address the threats to marine life and ocean health.
In a press release, the group said: “People are appalled by the devastation plastics have caused, choking the ocean and its life, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg.”
On Sunday 6 September, Ocean Rebellion and Animal Rebellion will host a beautiful, creative, socially-distanced Marine March at 2pm in London.
Coal is our heritage, not our future
1 JUL | Durham, UK
Photo: Helena Smith
Rebels celebrated an incredible victory last month as Durham County Council finally rejected a proposal to expand the Bradley open-cast coal mine.
XR: We are the Dead Canaries and other local activists, including the Campaign to Protect Pont Valley and the Coal Action Network, staged protests in February, which included blocking the entrance to the mine. The council also received thousands of letters in support of the Pont Valley communities, who have fought against the mine for over 30 years.
Banks Mining Group’s plans to extract an extra 90,000 tonnes of coal and 20,000 tonnes of fireclay was deemed ‘environmentally unacceptable’, with one councillor stating ‘This is 2020 not 1820.’
The fight continues as proposals for mines in Druridge Bay, Northumberland and Dewley Hill, near Newcastle await a decision.
28-31 Aug | Your Region
This weekend, local and regional groups are holding their own local Rebellion with actions on these common themes:
- Fri 28 Aug: Mass Banner drops and Fossil Fuel-Focused Action
- Sat 29 Aug: Airports and Aviation
- Sun 30 Aug: Connect to Your Community: run assemblies, connect, listen, learn, hold talks and workshops
- Mon 31 Aug: Permanent Bank ‘holiday’ for Banks and Finance institutions funding climate breakdown
Not sure about how to make collaborative decisions on the streets? Check out this guide for ideas and tips!
The Rebellion Returns
From 1 Sep | 9am St Peter’s Square, Manchester | 12noon Parliament Square, London | Cardiff (TBC)
So, here’s the plan for the first day, 1 September, in each city.
London: Meet at 11am at either Tate Britain, Trafalgar Square, Buckingham Palace or Westminster Cathedral to march to Parliament or meet us directly at Parliament Square at 12 noon. We will sit outside Parliament reminding the government that we are watching them and asking MPs to come out and hear why they need to act now and back the CEE bill.
Under a broad umbrella, we will be coming together as a movement of movements, including Animal Rebellion, Ocean Rebellion, HS2 Rebellion, Global Justice Rebellion, Amazon Rebellion, Stop the Maangamizi and Afrikan Liberation groups to call for a representative Citizens’ Assembly on the multiple crises of this time.
More actions are being planned for the next 2 weeks highlighting the ecocidal harm of the government’s failure to act. Find a topline overview of actions to join in London here, with more being shared soon. We will hold a People’s Assembly every evening (around 5/6pm) to review the day and get input from rebels on the ground on plans for the next day. Join the London broadcast to get all the info you need on actions and important updates.
Manchester: Meet at St Peter’s Square at 9am where we will take and hold space in the city. More actions planned in the following days calling on Barclays, Greater Manchester Pension Fund and others to divest from fossil fuels. Join the Manchester broadcast to find out more.
Cardiff: Rebels from Bristol, Wales and the South West of England are coming together in Cardiff for a Declaration of Rebellion and a March for our Future (time and location TBC). With more actions planned for the rest of the week, including a Rising Tide Action at the Senedd focused on the intersecting global crises – climate breakdown, ecological collapse, Covid-19 and racial injustice. Find a timeline here and join the Cardiff broadcast to get all the details.
Interested in the HS2 Rebellion effort? Join actions on Friday 28 August in Birmingham, London or Manchester and get on this Telegram group to find out more. To sign up to roles and ways to take action during the rebellion click here.
Digital Action: Get Your MP to Back the Bill
Now | Online
The Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill will be introduced to parliament on 1 September and is a precious chance to get our demands turned into law.
But to stand any chance of passing, the bill needs the backing of a majority of MPs. So join this digital action to call and message your MP and make our voices heard!
Looking for Legal Observers
Independent Legal Observers is calling for trained Legal Observers and volunteers to provide on-the-ground or remote support during the rebellion. If you can help between 28 August and 13 September, complete this questionnaire.
Host a Rebel
Do you live in London, Manchester or Cardiff and can you accommodate rebels from your home or garden? We are especially looking for rebels in London who can offer accommodation for older rebels.
Or are you looking for accommodation during the rebellion?
Rebellion Camping in London
Planning to camp in London? Some rebels will be camping in Hyde Park, south of Speakers Corner in the flat area south-east of the Reformers Tree.
Coronavirus means we need to keep to groups of less than 30 rebels, maintain a minimum of 1m between tents, wear masks even when outdoors, and bring gloves and hand sanitiser.
This will be a campsite not a rebellion site and while we will not have a sustenance tent, we will do everything we can to make it a comfortable and well-stewarded space. But camping here will be at your own responsibility, so please look after yourself and your belongings.
United in fierce love for our sacred Earth, members of XR faith groups and secular meditators will sit in vigil for the Earth for seven days and nights outside Parliament. Join the opening ceremony at 7pm on Monday 31 Aug. Sign up to our Telegram broadcast and watch this video.
Peoples’ Assembly Facilitators
3 City Telegram Groups have been set up for People’s Assembly (PA) facilitators and note-takers to organise during the Rebellion.
Join the Rebellion using QR codes
To stop the spread of Covid-19 during Rebellion, new rebels should be asked to sign up to the movement using QR codes (large format for distant capture) to direct them to the Action Network data entry form.
For this reason, the Data Entry Working Group will not be processing any scans of paper forms for this Rebellion. If there is someone at each information point with a smart phone, they will be able to enter the data safely for those without one.
The link and QR code to take you to the form are here.
Calling all Young Rebels
Calling all XR Youth rebels! We need you to fill out this survey and spread the word. We want to know just how fast our movement is growing. Please send the survey to your local XRY group (and anyone else you know in XRY) and complete it by 27 August to be included in our numbers!
Help write the Story of the Rebellion
As a small team of writing rebels, we will be covering the story of the Rebellion as it happens with daily coverage of actions and more in our newsletters. We are looking for volunteer writers, proof readers and rebels who can help build emails (HTML skills required). All roles can be done remotely.
Get in touch by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a few lines about what you’d like to do. Previous experience isn’t essential but if you have some, please share this with us too.
Coming Soon: Money Rebellion
This autumn, Money Rebellion will be launched, focusing on how the political and economic system is hard-wired to destroy life on earth – and what we can do about it.
If you are interested in helping us launch, fill in this short form. Rebels who aren’t able to join us on the streets can support our rebel ringers with promoting this and other actions. Find out more at moneyrebellion.earth.
Do you bank with Barclays?
XR Money Circle is planning actions to tackle Europe’s biggest fossil fuel funder: Barclays! And would love to know how many rebels are customers. Email email@example.com if you bank with Barclays.
Share this Climate Quiz!
Our Rebellion is all about sharing climate science.Test out your knowledge with this quiz and challenge your friends, family and colleagues. Then send it to everyone not telling the truth, like councillors, MPs, the BBC and other Media.
History Corner: The Seattle Protests
Have you spotted our civil disobedience series on Instagram where we share stories that inspire us to take action, so you can share them to inspire others?
First off, the Seattle protests. In 1999, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) met in Seattle to develop new global trade rules at the expense of the global south and the natural world. But protesters from around the planet converged, demanding a different kind of globalisation, one that promoted high labour standards, global environmental protections, debt relief, food justice, and authentic democracy.⠀
Using a mix of street theatre and civil disobedience to block the entrance to the WTO convention center, the protesters successfully stalled the talks, even in the face of police tear gas. Just as important, images of the protest went viral, becoming a defining moment in both activist tactics and police response.⠀
“The only weapon we have is our bodies, and we need to tuck them in places, so wheels don’t turn” – Bayard Rustin⠀
Explore why we desperately need the CEE Bill and a Citizens’ Assembly in this week’s selected reads
- Watch: Why have a Citizens’ Assembly?
- Rob Hopkins: Why the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill could lead to a revolution of the imagination
- We owe it to young people to take action on climate change with the CEE Bill
- Caroline Lucas: After coronavirus, the British People aren’t afraid of the big changes needed to tackle the climate crisis
- Bill McKibben: The world had reached decision time on the climate crisis
Thank you for reading. There’s so much exciting stuff going on in the movement that we barely have time to write this sign-off. Keep up the good work! If you have any questions or queries, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As we enter this crucial phase in human history, our Rebellion will need money to make sure our message is heard. Anything you can give is appreciated.