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Extinction Rebellion: The activists risking prison to save the planet

DW, 17 Apr 19, In the face of runaway climate chaos, governments around the world are in denial, say the activists hoping to land themselves in jail in defence of our planet — and the survival of our species.Many environmentalists — particularly the major international NGOs — have long argued that frightening people will only put them off engaging with climate protection. If the problem feels too big, we feel hopeless and switch off to think about something else.

But with scientists telling us that the planet’s sixth mass extinction is already underway, and that we have scarcely more than a decade to avert devastating, irreversible climate change, a growing number of activists now believe it’s too late to sugar coat the the truth.

This week, they will be taking to streets around the world in acts of mass civil disobedience, with the message that unless we take immediate action humankind itself faces extinction.

“Emissions are still going up, so we need to disrupt normal life,” says Nick Holzberg, who works full time for Extinction Rebellion in Berlin. “The only way to do that is peaceful civil disobedience.”

State of emergency

Extinction Rebellion first emerged in fall last year, when thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of London. UK “Extinction Rebels” have since occupied bridges over the Thames and stripped off in the British Parliament. And their movement has expanded to 35 countries around the world………

The group is demanding that governments declare a “climate emergency,” to shift into a crisis mode where “business as unusual” is suspended to make climate protection the priority.

More concretely, they want governments to commit to carbon neutrality by 2025 — instead of mid-century as the European Union and many national governments are aiming for. ….

With little faith in governments taking such radical action alone, Extinction Rebellion is also demanding a “people’s assembly” to oversee the transition. ……

April 18, 2019 - Posted by | 2 WORLD, climate change

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