Extinction Rebellion have been protesting in central London around Westminster. The protest started on Monday and is planned to last two weeks. There’s a good overview of it on their website, along with a fab map. The objective is to get the UK government to acknowledge the climate change emergency and to bring forward the net zero carbon target to 2025.
Extinction Rebellion in London
As regular readers are likely to know my day job is in Westminster. So I’ve been walking past the protesters, and stopping to have a look and take pictures. It’s a pretty good natured protest, feeling more like a festival than anything else. There’s music and dancing and people talking about the climate emergency. The streets are even full of tents and flags!
As well as protesters there are also loads of police, and they too are approachable and friendly. I’ve had a couple of conversations with them as I’ve navigated around the blocked roads etc. For a non-driver the disruption is minimal, most of the walking and cycle routes are unaffected. Some buses are either on detour or cancelled. If you drive then it’s a nightmare. Lots of key junctions are populated by Extinction Rebellion people, as you can see in some of the photos below.
An effective protest?
How it’s changing minds I’d not like to guess. There’s certainly a vocal segment giving it a load of whataboutery and faking their outrage and sense of being offended. Personally I have a fair amount of sympathy with their goal, I’m just not sure they’re effective in changing other peoples minds. But what else do they have as an option?