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SOUTH EAST UK

Stop the SLP

Will you resist? The SLP, ExxonMobil's new Southampton to London Heathrow aviation fuel pipeline, is cutting a swathe of destruction across South East England; putting planet and people before profit and enabling our government's ecocidal airport expansion plans.
Will you be complicit? or will you join in the resistance and #StopTheSLP ?
Listen to this powerful testimony and decide.
"We're on the brink, we see the decades of denial and failure to act. Ice caps melting, forests on fire, floods and famine"


Learn more : https://xr-southeast.uk/stop-the-southampton-to-london-heathrow-pipeline/


A Child's coffin is buried in the ExxonMobil Southampton to London Pipeline trench representing the fate of children suffering and dying because of the climate and ecological emergency
A funeral is held for our childrens future


Press Release : Extinction Rebellion stops work on aviation fuel pipeline to Heathrow. 

Extinction Rebellion South East UK

Photographs, please click here

Livestream from around 10.00am and available afterwards
https://www.facebook.com/XRSouthEastUK/
Updates on twitter https://twitter.com/XrSouthEastUK

For Immediate Publication


— START —

Funeral cortege of eco-protestors invade site to dig grave and mourn the climate destruction that the project will wreak across the globe.

Work on the new 97km aviation fuel pipeline from the Southampton Fawley Refinery to London Heathrow is being disrupted today (25th June) by climate protestors digging a grave and mourning the grim prospects for the future of life on Earth if prompt action is not taken to stop the use of fossil fuels.

To the heartbeat of a single drum, protesters walked solemnly in a dignified procession to where a funeral service was conducted at Naishes Lane, Church Crookham in Hampshire. A child’s white coffin was interred, signifying the loss of children’s futures across the world should the Government fail to act on the climate and ecological emergency. There must be no new fossil fuel infrastructure.

The activists are demanding that work on the pipeline, which will increase the volume of aviation fuel to Heathrow airport, be stopped because it is inconsistent with the urgent need to reduce carbon emissions. Flying is the fastest way to burn climate damaging fossil fuels.

At the COP26 Climate Summit in Glasgow last December the UK government emphasised the need to reduce the aviation sector’s contribution to climate change as essential, yet they plan to grow air traffic 60% by 2050; a completely unsustainable prospect and against the advice of the UK Climate Change Committee. 

Climate change is real. The facts have been known for decades by ExxonMobil, whose subsidiary Esso Petroleum Ltd, is constructing the pipeline. Exxon has denied the overwhelming scientific consensus on man-made climate change since the 1960s,  responding by financially sponsoring climate science denial. They have continued to exploit and profit from oil and gas despite knowing the harm they are causing to people and nature. The immediate damage to nature as a result of the construction works is readily visible in the South East as a swathe of destruction is carved across woodland, country parks, open spaces and disturbingly across the globally threatened heathland of the Thames Basin Heaths, a habitat rarer than rainforest.

Hannah Shelley, 32, an Actuarial Pensions Consultant from Farnborough said
“We’ve got to stop this pipeline. Once you've seen the evidence, you know that flying is the fastest way to fry the planet. Things are going to change, mother nature will make sure of that, but it'll be better if we take action first to stop the worst of the chaos climate breakdown will bring."

Deborah Elliott, 63, a Business Travel Manager said
“After 40+ years in the travel industry I’ve seen the changes - families used to have just one holiday a year. Then those richer families added more flights; a ski trip, a weekend break, half term holidays or a stag/hen do abroad. The plans to grow air traffic 60% by 2050 is nonsensical as only the wealthiest will benefit, causing carbon emissions and climate change which will affect the poorest amongst us most. And, Exxon know the science, the damage and continue to push their products”

Danielle McHallam, 33 a Sales Manager from Farnborough said
"The world is dying before our eyes and I'm here because protest seems to be the only way to get my voice heard and soon the new police bill may deny me even that. I’ve made a no-flight pledge. People must stop flying"

Climate concern is high right across society, with polls from around the world demonstrating that governments have a clear mandate to make the changes needed to ensure that we leave a habitable world for coming generations. This is particularly so in the UK where 80% of people see the climate crisis as a global emergency.

We’re at a crucial moment in history. Our climate is breaking down and life on Earth is dying: accelerated by our economic system and supported by politicians. But, together we can change this, Join us.
Sign up to learn more about our Summer Uprising which starts on 16th July.
https://xrb.link/s6L3VB5mt6

You are invited. All are welcome.

Notes for Editors:

XR South East Campaigns
https://xr-southeast.uk/stop-the-southampton-to-london-heathrow-pipeline/


XR South East Press
https://xr-southeast.uk/press/

XR South East Social Media
https://linktr.ee/xrsoutheastuk

Unicef : Uniting for Global Food Security conference in Berlin  24th June 2022"
As is always the case, none of this is the responsibility of children and yet, they pay the highest price”
https://www.unicef.org/press-releases/unicef-executive-director-catherine-russells-remarks-uniting-global-food-security


COP26 Declaration : International Aviation Climate Ambition Coalition
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cop-26-declaration-international-aviation-climate-ambition-coalition/cop-26-declaration-international-aviation-climate-ambition-coalition

Public Support for Action on Climate Change
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/nov/01/cop26-polling-data-is-overwhelming-people-want-leaders-to-act

The Massive Inequality of Flying - the fastest way to burn fossil fuels
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NW_hH3xCiAY

Naishes Lane, Church Crookham
https://www.naisheslanesangs.co.uk/

Thames Basin Heaths
https://www.tbhpartnership.org.uk/


Extinction Rebellion's Immediate Demand : Stop the Fossil Fuel Economy

https://extinctionrebellion.uk/2022/01/23/xr-uk-strategy-2022/

NO NEW FOSSIL FUEL INVESTMENT

NO NEW FOSSIL FUEL LICENCES

END FOSSIL FUEL SUBSIDIES NOW

Investment: Since the Paris Agreement, fossil fuel lending has increased every year and could surpass $1trn by 2030. The financial sector, along with governments, is the key enabler of an economic model built on causing harm.

Licences: The government must commit to end new concessions, licensing or leasing rounds for oil and gas production and exploration and to set a Paris-aligned date for ending oil and gas production and exploration on all territory over which they have jurisdiction.

Subsidies, the UK is one of the worst of the OECD-member nations, calculating that it gave on average £16 billion a year to support fossil fuels in 2017–19.  

That’s £43,835,616 per day – over £300 million a week – taken from our tax, and given to murderers.

About Extinction Rebellion

Time has almost entirely run out to address the ecological crisis which is upon us, including the 6th mass species extinction, global pollution, and abrupt, runaway climate change. Societal collapse and mass death are seen as inevitable by scientists and other credible voices, with human extinction also a possibility, if rapid action is not taken. Extinction Rebellion believes it is a citizen’s duty to rebel, using peaceful civil disobedience, when faced with criminal inactivity by their Government.

Extinction Rebellion’s key demands are:

1. Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.

2. Government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.3. Government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens Assembly on climate and ecological justice.

Dear Rebels,   Welcome to this February edition of South East Action Roundup, featuring actions by rebels in our region


POLLY HIGGINS AT NEWLANDS CORNER


Getting ready for Rebellion on April 9th in Hyde Park!!
Rebels from Godalming, Farnham, Farnborough, Guildford, Woking and Reading, joined forces and set up a stall at the visitor centre. They engaged the public with the presence of the “Polly Higgins” boat, art activities, a climate crisis questionnaire and a lot of long and interesting conversations.



BRIGHTON
No Pensions Without Representation! Rebels joined other climate campaigners in a procession through the streets of Brighton and Hove, to demand that Brighton and Hove City Council have a say over the local government pension scheme. A brighton councillor will bring a proposal to the June meeting of the East Sussex Pension Board as BHCC backs fossil fuel divestment for a third time.   Rebels wore american-revolution-style tricorn hats, 18th century coats and golden sashes as they marched between Brighton town hall and Hove town hall, which is where the meeting was taking place. Banner’s read: “No Pensions Without Representation! It’s time to divest Brighton & Hove’s pensions from fossil fuels.”  


CANTERBURY CLIMATE STRIKE
Canterbury rebels held their regular Friday Climate strike in the middle of Canterbury high street. It was a chance to meet and greet the public and fellow rebels.    


REIGATE & REDHILL AND DORKING BARCLAYS VIGIL
XR Reigate & Redhill and Dorking, along with local members of Christian Climate Action, held a vigil outside the Redhill Barclay’s branch. Several good conversations were had, as part of this nationwide campaign, to raise awareness of Barclay’s continued funding of fossil fuel interests.    


EPSOM & EWELL
“For Peat’s sake!!” Epsom & Ewell XR rebels were in the town centre, with the message that peat needs to stay in peat bogs - and should not be cut and turned into compost. Rebels were asking passers-by buy peat free compost and giving out information about where to get it.



 


FLEET, FARNBOROUGH AND CAMBERLEY

Rebels block Farnborough airport’s main gate   Rebels from surrounding local groups blocked the main gate at Farnborough Airport for two hours.   Some rebels had fake oil poured over them to highlight the polluting nature of the private jets and the damage caused by our high carbon economy.    There was drumming from the samba band and the protest was family friendly, the children present were reminding everyone of how important it is to stop global heating. 
   


HASTINGS
Hastings Borough Council have "Sat on their hands" - they were held to account for doing too little since they declared a climate emergency 3 years ago. Rebels are calling on their council to step up to their ambitious target of net zero carbon by 2030. In part this is to demand action, but it is also to demand the truth, because it’s time to get real.

 


NEWBURY Bank Job!
Rebels braved the rain to protest outside HSBC and Barclays against their continued huge financing of fossil fuels. Oil, coal and gas must stay in the ground if we are to avoid rising temperatures that will threaten life on earth as we know it. The action got great local press coverage too!  


SOUTHSEA BUS STOP SUBVERTISING
Rebels did their first bus stop ad subvertising in Southsea, Portsmouth, drawing attention to Barclay’s investment in fossil fuels.  


LEGO REBELLION - END COAL NOW!

The smallest rebels of Extinction Rebellion have been in action again, they're unstoppable! The Bravus Mining and Resources (previously known as Adani) train full of coal was no problem to Lego Rebellion.

Paint The Symbol   Lego Rebels have started their Paint The Symbol campaign!
Dissent breeds dissent. This is how Otpor started. And they overthrew Milosevic.


     

REMEMBER : No-one is too small to make a difference!


Thanks for rebelling and reading.  See you on the streets again some time...
Love and Rage,  South East Anchor Circle

This is a real warning from the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

What does this mean?

Extreme weather events happening more frequently and more severely. crops failing around the world, prices rising in our supermarkets and huge swathes of our planet becoming unliveable. In our hearts, we all know that the balance of life on this planet hangs by a thread. What we do now is crucial.

How do we save this planet for future generations?

Governments are too afraid or too corrupt to make the changes they know are necessary to save us. Our economic system continues to cause carbon emissionsto rise rather than fall. Recycling or driving an electric car is great, but in the end it's rearranging the deckchairs on a rapidly sinking ship. But...

"The final chapter is ours to write. We know what we need to do.
What happens next is up to us " (David Attenborough)

That's you, me and everyone, together in our millions, to force the changes we need and change the course of history.

"Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter" (Martin Luther King)

Break your silence, Be the change. Add your voice to ours on the streets to demand that our government acts at this time of crisis.

We are in constant rebellion against our Government. We Rebel for Life.




Amazon’s fulfilment centre at Dartford, Kent is being blocked by climate activists who are disrupting the company’s business on its busiest day of the year. The action is intended to draw attention to Amazon’s exploitation of its workers and environmentally destructive and wasteful business practices on Black Friday.

The group is blocking the entrances using bamboo structures, lock-ons, and banners with the words ‘AMAZON CRIME’ and ‘INFINITE GROWTH, FINITE PLANET’ on them. They intend to stay for at least 48 hours.

The blockade is part of an international action by Extinction Rebellion targeting dozens of Amazon fulfilment centres in the UK, US, Germany and the Netherlands aimed at highlighting Amazon’s “crimes”. 

Rob Callender, 31 a yoga instructor from Uxbridge said
We need to make Amazon pay for the damage its doing to the environment, for the harm Jeff Bezos does trying to create and exploit a market for the mega-rich to get high on space tourism; and Amazon should pay for the terrible damage hyper-consumerism is doing to our planet, creating emissions, poisonous waste and burned out workers who are denied the right to unionise in most places. Black Friday is a dark day for the planet. The fact Bezos is so rich is all the proof we should need that he has used Amazon as a vehicle to exploit his way to the top, taking advantage of cheap labour, cheap financing, cheap resources, cheap oil, cheap tax havens and the impulse for convenience. Amazon must pay - the cost is our children's futures.”

Alistair, age 72 who is retired explained
“The scientists have told us in detail the consequences of climate change. Every day I wake knowing that governments and industry have agreed this is an emergency but are failing to act, ignoring the horrific consequences for my beautiful grandchildren and the millions of young people around the world. I cannot collude with this ecocide”

Extinction Rebellion says that Amazon, one of the world’s largest companies, is responsible for a long list of widely recognised “crimes” - from tax avoidance to the exploitation of workers, to rampant wastefulness and ecological destruction - while making its founder and largest shareholder Jeff Bezos one of the richest men on earth. The action aims to expose Amazon’s crimes and the wastefulness of Black Friday while holding it up as an example of a wider economic system designed to keep us hooked on buying things we don’t need, at a price the planet cannot afford. [1]

AMAZON’S CRIMES:

  1. The company said activities tied to its businesses emitted 60.64 million metric tons of carbon dioxide last year — more than a medium sized country and the equivalent of burning through 140 million barrels of oil. And they are growing by 19% every year, with Amazon's carbon footprint rising every year since 2018, when it first disclosed its carbon footprint after employees pressured it to do so.[2][3]

  2. Not only does Amazon's business emit more carbon emissions than a country the size of Denmark, but it is actively helping fossil fuel companies such as Shell, Exxon and BP to drill for more oil via its Amazon Web Services.[4]

  3. While scientists tell us that companies must rapidly decarbonise, Amazon continues to lobby the US Government to fight against climate legislation, while telling the public they are committed to green initiatives. They are committing the very definition of greenwash.[5]
  1. Amazon has a historic record of treating its workers “like robots”, with ambulances called out to UK warehouses 600 times in 2018, but the company has threatened to fire employees in the US for speaking out about its climate impact.[6][7]

  2. Amazon routinely destroys millions of items of unsold stock and returned items. Many of the products - including smart TVs and laptops - are often new and unused.[8] This wasteful practice epitomises the view that the natural world is expendable.

  3. Governments are subsidising the growth of this massive monopoly by allowing the e-commerce giant to legally report billions of pounds of sales in a tax haven, meaning they are stealing from the general public in order to grow. This helps Amazon to undercut more responsible businesses and is depriving governments of tax revenue that could be used to fund essential public services.[9]

This list is not exhaustive.

Amazon is fast becoming a global monopoly and already controls 15% of global online retail sales and 34% of the world’s cloud-computing capacity. By controlling these essential pieces of infrastructure, Amazon can privilege its own products and services and set the terms by which other companies have access to these markets. This is proving a disaster for small independent businesses and leading to an extraordinary concentration of wealth and power.[10]

These business practices have helped Amazon's founder and largest shareholder Jeff Bezos to become the world's richest man. According to Forbes, Bezos personal wealth amounts to $177bn.[11]

Amy Pritchard, age 36 a Care Worker from London said
"We pause to reflect on the social injustice of tax avoidance, of exploiting workers, the immoral pushing of unnecessary, relentless consumption, which the natural world bears the cost of.  We are creating an interruption to call out distracting greenwash and empty green promises in a climate and ecological emergency situation, and to create conversations about what has to change.”

Dr Alexander Penson, 38, Cancer Biologist from Croydon said
“Governments have been completely unwilling or unable to stop Amazon from exploiting workers, dodging taxes and acting like a monopoly. We’re here to fight for people over profit.”

Selma, age 21 a Student from Portsmouth explained
“I am taking action because business as usual is killing us. Every year millions of people are encouraged to go out and buy environmentally damaging items and abide by the system of capitalism. Amazon is one of the many corporations which are accelerating the climate crisis and causing huge amounts of waste and greenhouse gas emissions, as well as providing awful working conditions and contracts for their employees. Our actions and consumption in the global north is impacting the lives of the global majority who are disproportionately already.”

The Extinction Rebellion action coincides with a global day of action against Amazon in over 20 countries by the Make Amazon Pay Coalition which has issued a call to action asking workers and activists to participate in strikes, protests and actions to Make Amazon Pay [12]

Notes for Editors

[1]  Black Friday has a carbon emissions problem

[2] Amazon says carbon emissions rose 19% in 2020

[3] Amazon says its carbon footprint grew 19% last year

[4] Amazon's growing ties to oil industry irks some employees

[5] Apple and Disney among companies backing groups against US climate bill

[6]
Amazon Employees Describe Working for Jeff Bezos' Company During Peak

Amazon accused of treating UK warehouse staff like robots

[7] Amazon workers criticize company’s record on climate change

[8] Amazon warehouses trash millions of unsold products, media reports say

[9] Amazon shifts up to £8.2bn of UK revenues to Luxembourg, report finds

Amazon had sales income of €44bn in Europe in 2020 but paid no corporation tax

Do Amazon pay tax in the UK? Boris Johnson meets Bezos

[10]  Amazon global e-commerce market share 2019 l Statista

Amazon Doesn’t Just Want to Dominate the Market—It Wants to Become the Market

 Amazon’s ‘Total Surveillance’ Supermarkets Have Arrived – and Could Have Dangerous Consequences

[11] Forbes Billionaires 2021: The Richest People in the World

AMAZON.COM, INC. : Shareholders Board Members Managers and Company Profile | US0231351067

[12] Make Amazon Pay

Amazon Will Face Black Friday Strikes and Protests in 20 Countries

Two Olympians use pink boat to blockade main entrance to Fawley Oil refinery as other activists swarm into site and scale two 50 foot oil silos

Protestors demand Government listens to the people and bans all fossil fuels investments NOW

Eco-campaigners have broken into ExxonMobil’s Fawley Oil terminal in Hampshire today (28 October), just three days before the COP26 Climate Summit, to demand that the Government listens to the people and stops all fossil fuel investments NOW.

The protestors, who include British Olympians Laura Baldwin and Etienne Stott, are also calling for Exxon Mobil to stop its major expansion plans at Fawley Oil Refinery. The refinery, owned by ExxonMobil subsidiary Esso Petroleum Company, is the UK’s largest oil refinery, supplying 20% of all UK fossil fuels.

Around 15 Extinction Rebellion activists gained entry to the site early this morning, under cover of darkness, cutting the electrified perimeter fences surrounding the terminal and spreading across the site in small groups to lock on to structures across the site.

Seven of the protestors have scaled two 50 foot oil silos and unfurled two banners which proclaim: “Climate Emergency” and “No Future in Fossil Fuels”.

Another group of activists, including British Olympians Laura Baldwin and Etienne Stott, are chained to a pink boat, The Beverly Geronimo, on a trailer which is blockading the main entrance to the site.

Laura Baldwin, Olympic sailor, coach and environmental protector, from Portland, said: “I am a deeply protective mother, moved to take direct action in a desperate bid to force this suicidal system to change in time to limit the climate crisis worsening and slipping past the point of no return. Watching the news this summer was horrifying and heartbreaking, witnessing catastrophic climate impacts killing people on every continent of the globe. That we, as tax payers are actually funding, through subsidies, the toxic and deadly oil industry is beyond absurd and it must stop now.”

Etienne Stott, 42, Olympic Gold Medallist at London 2012,who lives in Nottingham, added: “I think it’s totally wrong that oil companies continue to put their profits ahead of everyone’s right to a future on a living planet. We need our government to rein in these rogue companies as a matter of urgency and show to the world ahead of COP26 that the U.K. is prepared to take a genuine leadership position.”

“Watching Joe Lycett’s documentary on Channel 4 this week made me realise just how dishonest these fossil fuel giants are being and motivated me to get onboard with this action today to continue to highlight the corruption and apply pressure where it’s needed.”

The protestors are demanding the government listens to the people. They point to mounting evidence the public want more radical action than the Government is offering to tackle climate breakdown.

This month the Climate Consensus, a survey of over 22,000 people across the UK, commissioned by Demos, revealed that between 77% and 94% of respondents back a carbon tax on polluting industries, higher levies on flying and grants for heat pumps to help tackle the climate crisis. A speed limit of 60mph on motorways and a campaign to reduce meat eating by 10% were also among the most popular measures.

A YouGov survey for Global Witness shows that more than two thirds (67%) of the British public across all sectors of the population, want to see the UK as world leader on climate change, with 65% wanting the Government to shift the subsidies it provides to domestic oil and gas companies to support the expansion of renewable energy and improve the energy efficiency of people’s homes. Only 7% opposed these measures.

Yet still the government turns a deaf ear to the electorate, with Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Budget speech this week almost devoid of any reference to the climate crisis and, just three days before the UK hosts the crucial Cop26 climate summit,  he announces the halving of taxes on domestic flights, which are already far cheaper and more polluting than trains, a £21bn in funding for roads, a paltry £1.5bn for public transport and the continued freeze on fossil fuel duty.

The Fawley activists are demanding the Government listen to the nation and raise the bar as the host of the Cop26 Climate Summit next week by announcing an immediate end to all fossil fuel investment, a move which would strengthen its hand in demanding radical action from world leaders.

Scientific evidence shows we are approaching the point of no return. Earlier this year UN secretary general, António Guterres warned that the recent IPCC report on the climate crisis is nothing less than “Code Red” for humanity. He added: “We are at the verge of the abyss.”

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has also warned that exploitation and development of new oil and gas fields and the building of coal-fired power stations must stop this year if the world is to stay within safe limits of global heating and meet the goal of net zero emissions by 2050.

The campaigners also condemn ExxonMobil’s massive expansion of its diesel production facilities at Fawley, despite the banning of all combustion powered vehicle sales by 2030, and the laying of a new, larger bore pipeline to supply Heathrow and other airports with ever greater quantities of fossil fuel, despite the unequivocal science that states we need to drastically reduce emissions.

Irrefutable evidence shows that ExxonMobil has known about the devastating effects of fossil fuel production on the environment for over 40 years, concluding in 1979that it "will cause dramatic environmental effects” in the coming decades and saying “the potential problem is great and urgent”.

However, instead of acting responsibly on that knowledge, they've spent tens of millions funding climate denial and misinformation and obstructing a transition to cleaner energy sources. A senior ExxonMobil lobbyist recently admitted that the company was aggressively fighting against some of the science.

Activist Hannah Hunt, 22, a student and sailor from Brighton, warned: "We are speeding towards an unprecedented humanitarian crisis. The government must ban any new fossil fuel investment. Anything less and we fall off the cliff and condemn the next generation to the greatest level of suffering in human history and the greatest injustice. For the health of our planet, for the health of our children: science cannot be disputed, so now is the time to act."

Sarah Webb, aged 50, a special educational needs tutor from Oxfordshire, added: “I am here to stand up for what is right. Our Earth, our home is on fire, and all we hear from our Government is 'blah, blah, blah'  - empty promises and failed targets. If you want a liveable future, I  encourage you to stand with us."

Jonathan Kennedy, 42, mechanical engineer, Sussex,  said he had acted in fear for his children’s future. He said: We have two young children. It breaks my heart to think how our collective failure to act on the climate crisis is going to impact their generation. The government’s action is not enough. I can't stand by. I have to do what I can.”

Only protective decarbonisation of our economies can even begin to set limits on the scale of death, destruction and mass extinction that climate change brings.

At the very least there must be no new investment in fossil fuel infrastructure. This is Extinction Rebellion’s IMMEDIATE DEMAND to government: Stop all fossil fuel investment NOW.

Notes for Editors:

COP26

It’s three days before COP26. Governments around the world have a duty of care to protect the lives and well-being of their citizens. They are failing.

COP1 was set-up by the UN to deal with climate change in 1995.  Since then, there have been 25 meetings. After nearly 40 years of warnings and 30 years of international climate negotiations, carbon emissions from burning fossil fuels have increased by over 50% since 1990. Meanwhile fossil fuels are subsidised at $11m a minute. Now we are at COP26 and we need action.

The climate crisis

Emissions are still rising. In fact they are rising so much that it’s predicted that instead of 1.5°C we are on a path to 3.2°C increase this century. The world is going to become a terrifying, dangerous place  if we reach  3.2°C of heating.

We are already facing climate and ecological breakdown. One million animal and plant species are now threatened with extinction. People, principally those in the Global South who have done the least to create the damage are suffering and dying today and at COP26 their voices must be heard.

Sweeping changes are needed to the nature of our economy, the form of democracy, and the way we share our planet. The UK Climate Assembly showed that citizens will step up to make the tough decisions necessary to move towards a greener, fairer world if they are enabled to do so. People want change.

But, before we begin to repair the damage, we need to stop making the crisis worse. There’s no time left to lose, aiming at net zero by 2050 will mean a death sentence for millions. Denial and greenwashing must cease.

Fawley Refinery

Fawley refinery, the largest in the United Kingdom, produces 270,000 barrels of crude oil a day and supplies 20% of all UK fossil fuels. It has a multi-million pound expansion programme planned.

The refinery is owned by Esso Petroleum Company Limited, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corporation who are investing a billion dollars to expand diesel production despite that all combustion powered vehicle sales will be banned in 2030. 

A further development is the Southampton to Heathrow Pipeline (SLP) project replacing and expanding 90km of the underground aviation fuel pipeline. Flying cannot easily be decarbonised and the industry has no credible route to zero emissions. In fact, the UK plans to grow air traffic 60% by 2050 a completely unsustainable prospect – they fly, we die.

ExxonMobil knew

ExxonMobil knew about the overwhelming scientific consensus on man-made climate change from at least the mid-1960s, and responded by sponsoring climate science denial. This has enabled them to continue fossil fuel extraction despite knowing it causes mounting harm to people and planet. Their denial and greenwashing has continued ever since. And, as we act today, with love and humility, in defence of our beautiful planet, Exxon’s CEO is called to give testimony to the US Senate.

Listen to the People

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/oct/11/uk-public-backs-carbon-tax-high-flyer-levy-and-heat-pump-grants-study-shows

https://www.globalwitness.org/en/press-releases/yougov-poll-finds-majority-british-public-want-uk-lead-world-tackling-climate-change/

Pink Boat: The Beverly Geronimo

The pink boat used to blockade the main gate at Fawley oil refinery is named after Beverly Geronimo, an activist murdered in the Phillipines. Beverly, 27, was an active member of the Tabing Guangan Farmers Association (TAGUAFA) and the Parents-Teachers’ Community Association (PTCA) of the Mindanao Interfaith Services Foundation Inc. (MISFI) Academy.

Since 2009, Beverly had experienced harassment, intimidation and coercion from soldiers present in their community. She was staunchly opposed large scale mining companies such as OZ Metals and Agusan Petroleum.

ends

Farnborough airport barricaded by activists locked to a stretch limousine, fuel barrels and a giant steel tripod in call for polluter elite to cut their emissions

Extinction Rebellion activists have blocked all major entrances to Farnborough Airport in Hampshire today (2nd October) to protest against the shockingly high levels of CO2 that private flights emit per passenger.

As world leaders gather for the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow this month, protestors are calling on the world's super-rich elite of celebrities, oligarchs and business leaders to ditch private flights. These private flyers, just 1% of the world’s population, cause half of aviation’s global emissions. Extinction Rebellion is also demanding the government stops private flights now.

The 30,000 private flights to and from Farnborough Airport each year carry an average of just 2.3 passengers, with each passenger responsible for the emission of nine times as much carbon as an economy flight to the US and 20 times that to Spain. The airport has permission to increase flight movements to 50,000 a year.

In protest at this wanton level of pollution by the super-rich, Extinction Rebellion has today blockaded three key airport entrances with activists locked on top of a 3 metre high steel tripod at one gateway and to fuel barrels at a second. The third entrance is barricaded by a stretch limousine, with the driver locked on to the steering wheel and a protestor dressed as a media mogul glued to the roof. Other demonstrators from across the South East, including a former airline pilot, are also protesting at the gates of the airport with banners exclaiming Private Flights Cost The Earth; Stop Private Flights Now; Private Jets = Public Deaths.

The airport’s recent move to offer “Sustainable” Aviation Fuels (SAF) to aircraft is condemned as utter greenwash, since the sheer amount of SAF needed to fuel the aviation industry would result in the mass destruction of forests and biodiversity.

Protestor Sarah Hart, 40, a sales manager and resident of Farnborough, said:
“I am taking this action against the airport to highlight the damage private flying is doing to the environment and the lack of accountability by the users who avoid public scrutiny. I am demanding the government act now and ban private flights.”

Activist Marion Malcher, 66, a project manager from Woking, said:
“It's madness that a tiny number of very rich people, just 1%, are creating half of aviation’s carbon emissions, whilst the poorest people suffer and die because of climate breakdown. They're inflicting massive damage to all life on our beautiful planet. Luxury private flights must stop, they are literally costing us the earth.”

Protestor Todd Smith, 32, a former airline pilot from Reading, criticised Farnborough Airport’s move to offer SAF as a so-called alternative fuel.

He said: “The term ‘Sustainable Aviation Fuel’ was coined by the aviation and fossil fuel industry to deceive the public and greenwash the utterly destructive nature of biofuels. 

“Biofuels result in land grabs, deforestation, biodiversity loss, water scarcity, rising food prices and land-use emissions which can be worse than the fossil fuel they are replacing. The most optimistic forecasts say there are only sufficient global resources to support approximately 5.5% of projected EU jet fuel demand in 2030.“The alternative fuel that SAF producer Neste plans to supply to Farnborough would be used much more efficiently in ships and trucks and given there’s only small quantities available, should be prioritized to decarbonise more essential activities than private jet use.” 
​​​​​​​
Mike Grant, 61, a former serviceman, from Rosewell near Edinburgh said "Private jets are an environmental disaster. Those who use private jets have the wealth and power to know and do so much better. They boast about being leaders of society and drivers of the economy. They are also drivers of the climate crisis. We call upon them to show real leadership, to take responsibility for their actions, to tell the truth about the impact of private jets on the environment and to do the right thing….park them."

One of the key recommendations made to the government by the Climate Assembly UK in its report The Path to Net Zero is to ban polluting private jets and helicopters, moving to electric when possible. They also called for frequent fliers and those that fly further to be made to pay more. The government has shown no sign of acting on either demand.

Research by think tank Transport and Environment, revealed that CO2 emissions from private jets in Europe rose by nearly a third between 2005 and 2019 – outstripping scheduled flights. It found that the biggest source of  pollution was from jets departing from the UK and France – accounting for 36% of all private flight emissions in Europe. 

Climate charity Possible recently described the private jet as representing the most extreme end of the climate injustice that characterises air travel. It is calling for the banning of fossil-fuelled private jets at UK airports within the next five years.

The protest comes days before the Farnborough International Exhibition Centre, based at the airport, hosts the "Arms Fair", the DPRTE Defence Procurement and Supply Chain event on 5th October.


Notes for Editors:

Live stream taking place from around 7.00am. Available to view afterwards.

https://youtu.be/2V3s1FtTLZM
https://fb.watch/8nIvk5XFT3/

Images available from 7.30 am
https://show.pics.io/xr-global-media-breaking-news-content-600ed2733c68d80019a19bc7/search?tagId=6154b9e3443af20012467ef3

Social Media hashtags
#PrivateFlightsCostTheEarth
#StopPrivateFlightsNow

Key facts about private flights:

  1. The polluter elite (just 1% of the world’s population) caused half of aviation’s emissions in 2018 https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/nov/17/people-cause-global-aviation-emissions-study-covid-19
  2. Private jets - up to 40 times as much CO2 per passenger as commercial flights.
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/oct/27/super-rich-fuelling-growing-demand-for-private-jets-report-finds
  3. Just 2.5 passengers per flight
    Farnborough Airport: Planning Application to increase permitted aircraft movement Economic Statement May 2009 para 3.4
  4. Each flight - the same amount of CO2e as nine UK citizens in a year
    Based on 2020 average of 4.5t per UK citizen, 1.3mt of CO2e per annum and 33,000 movements.
  5. Fuel at Farnborough – an annual £47 million tax-free, duty-free gift to the super-rich
    Based on £30m of fuel sales in 2019
  6. Fuel at Farnborough – 14 x BP petrol stations stacked one on top of each other
    https://www.statista.com/statistics/312058/petrol-station-volume-by-brand-in-the-united-kingdom/
  7. The rich have had far too much freedom to design the planet according to their wishes.”https://www.theguardian.com/business/2020/nov/17/people-cause-global-aviation-emissions-study-covid-19
  8. Heathrow is just 22 miles away
  9. Bill Gates on his private jet: a “guilty pleasure” https://www.businessinsider.com/bill-gates-spending-biggest-indulgences-2018-2?r=US&IR=T
  10. The UK has seen a doubling of private jet flights since April this year versus last, with the biggest year-on-year bounces at Farnborough, Jersey and Oxford airports, according to aviation business monitoring group WingX. https://wingx-advance.com/domestic-traffic-rebounding-fast-international-connections-lagging/ 
  11. A key recommendation of the Climate Assembly UK is to ban polluting private jets and helicopters, moving to electric when possible. It also called for frequent fliers and those that fly further to be made to pay more.https://www.climateassembly.uk/report/read/final-report.pdf

Farnborough Airport:

Countering Farnborough Airport’s greenwash on SAF 

Farnborough Airport Website:
https://www.farnboroughairport.com/

Wiki:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Farnborough_Airport

Rushmore Borough Council:
https://www.rushmoor.gov.uk/farnboroughairport

Farnborough Aerodrome Consultative Committee:
http://www.facc.org.uk/

Farnborough Airport PlanMaster plan (2009)
http://www.facc.org.uk/printed-papers/2012/masterplan.pdf

Farnborough International Exhibition and Conference Centre:
https://www.farnborough.com/

DPRTE
https://www.dprte.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/09/DPRTE21-Event-PlannerV2.pdf

COP26
https://ukcop26.org

"CODE RED for humanity" - The UN Secretary-General António Guterres
https://news.un.org/en/story/2021/08/1097362


About Extinction Rebellion

Time has almost entirely run out to address the ecological crisis which is upon us, including the 6th mass species extinction, global pollution, and abrupt, runaway climate change. Societal collapse and mass death are seen as inevitable by scientists and other credible voices, with human extinction also a possibility, if rapid action is not taken. Extinction Rebellion believes it is a citizen’s duty to rebel, using peaceful civil disobedience, when faced with criminal inactivity by their Government.

Extinction Rebellion’s demands are:

  1. Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.
  2. Government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
  3. Government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.
CPS drops case against eco- activists who blockaded UKOG Horse Hill oil site

CPS drops case against eco-activists who blockaded UKOG Horse Hill oil site 

Public interest not served by prosecution, CPS rules 

It is not in the public interest to prosecute two Extinction Rebellion activists who locked themselves together to block the entrance of the Horse Hill oil site near Gatwick in December 2019, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has ruled.

The CPS decision to drop the case comes just days before the activists were due to appear in court this week (Thursday 14 January 2021).

Gillian Fletcher, 58, of Clifton Road, Wokingham and Steve Lowes (known as Woody), 49, of Goring Road, Staines-upon-Thames, were both charged with wilful obstruction of a highway after locking their arms together in a steel pipe and lying in front of the gates of the oil site for 8 hours on 10 December 2019. The site operator UKOG has planning permission to drill new wells there and produce oil for 20 years.

Gillian Fletcher, 58, of Clifton Road, Wokingham and Steve Lowes (known as Woody), 49, of Goring Road, Staines-upon-Thames

They were both due to appear at Staines Magistrates Court on Thursday this week. However on Friday last week the CPS informed both activists that the case had been dropped. 

The CPS stated: “The decision to discontinue these charges has been taken because a prosecution is not needed in the public interest.”

“We carried out this action over a year ago to bring attention to UKOG's unnecessary and destructive plans to extract oil and gas across the south east.

They intend to industrialise our precious countryside and ruin our environment in order to extract fossil fuels which we don't need and which will contribute to our own extermination. We and others will not stand by silent and allow them to do this.” 

Gillian Fletcher, Wokingham

The Government has been using the current health situation to subtly erode rights of protest in a way which will be difficult to reverse when the situation changes.
They have been insisting on prosecuting peaceful protestors, forcing them to travel against their own guidelines to reach courts for hearings.  “The dropping of our charges as 'not being needed in the public interest' is perhaps an indication not only that some prosecutors are aware of who the real criminals are in this scenario, but that they are starting to exert their independence from political interference." 

Steve Lowes of Staines-upon-Thames

Activists are hopeful that this latest decision by the CPS and its decision in November last year to drop charges against another two Extinction Rebellion campaigners, who locked themselves together outside the site and two who breached the site’s security to occupy the site, indicates an increasing reluctance to uphold prosecutions against peaceful protests highlighting the Climate Emergency.

Horse Hill oil well has been the focus of protests since the site was earmarked for oil exploration.  In the past year there have been a number of slow walks and in October two activists occupied the site’s drilling rig for twelve hours.

In 2018 UKOG was granted an interim injunction against protests at the site. The company is in the process of attempting to make the injunction permanent. 

A trial beginning early next year will decide whether the interim injunction should be made final. This will be the first of the injunctions against protests at UK onshore oil and gas sites to go to trial.

In a similar injunction granted to Ineos. the appeal court judges dismissed the section outlawing protests on the public highway, but UKOG has indicated that it wants to continue to outlaw protests on the highway. 

UKOG has said it will seek to include in the final injunction slow walking, standing in front of vehicles, climbing onto vehicles and actions that blocked the public highway. It also said it would seek to include trespass to land and obstructing the entrance to sites. In the meantime the interim injunction continues to be challenged in court by the Weald Action Group, the order comes before a High Court judge next month.

Eco activists “slow walk” four tankers to protest future fossil fuel production 

Campaigners converge on UKOG Horse Hill site to call for end to drilling

Extinction Rebellion and other eco activists slowly walked in front of four tankers this morning (3 August) en route to UKOG’s Horse Hill production site.

The slow walk saw around 20 Covid-19 masked activists gather near the junction of Horse Hill and Reigate Road and proceed at a snail’s pace in front of the tanker to protest the continued expansion of fossil fuel development in the midst of the climate emergency.

This is the second time in two months that protesters have used slow walking to highlight continued oil extraction at the Horse Hill site, which is located two miles from Horley town centre and close to Gatwick airport. Stewards were on hand to minimise delays to other drivers.

The protest comes just weeks after a local campaigner won permission for a judicial review of Surrey County Council’s decision in September last year to grant planning permission to produce oil at the site for 20 years – a move that could add an estimated 10 million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

I feel I have to take action now. The climate is breaking down as we speak. Unless we urgently reduce our dependence on fossil fuels there is going to be global human suffering on a scale we have never seen before. New exploitation of oil, like this, taking place on our doorstep at Horse Hill, is sealing us into a terrifying future. The UK government and Surrey County Council have failed to act to prevent new oil development, despite acknowledging the emergency.
This protest is not fun. It is scary, but I feel I have a moral duty to do what I can for the sake of my children and future generations. This is a small peaceful protest and we are taking what measures we can to keep everyone around us safe by maintaining social distancing as far as possible and wearing face masks.

Kate James, 45, a protester from Brighton

We are at a point in time where we are on a precipice of climate break-down and the human race must take the right steps to prevent this.
This can only be avoided if we invest in renewable energy which is becoming cheaper and easier to harness.
The fact that the government is not doing all it can to prevent mass extinction, and continues to invest in the use of fossil fuels, is criminal.

For this reason I have come to protest by slow walking the oil industry lorries entering the site.

Brian Sandersen, aged 37, a Sussex-based scientist

We can no longer put our heads in the sand and ignore what is happening. The Climate Change Committee, which advises the government, has warned that we need to plan for a 4 degree Celsius rise in temperature by the end of the century.
We are currently just over one degree and we are experiencing floods and wild fires. A 4 degree rise will be catastrophic. We have a chance after Covid-19 to change path and the urgency of the pandemic shows what is possible if there is a will.
Climate change is here for the foreseeable future. How we act now will decide what future we leave our children, future generations and al the other amazing species that share this incredible planet Earth with us.

Jack Bowden, environmentalist from Redhill
  • Campaigners have set up a crowdfunding appeal to cover the cost of the Judicial Review.
  • Donations can be made at https://chuffed.org/project/support-surrey-oil-legal-challenge

Live streaming at the site on https://www.facebook.com/XRSouthEastUK

Due to a civil injunction at the site protestors names are aliases. The civil injunction prohibits certain protests at UKOG sites. Its scope is currently being challenged in the courts.

Back to news

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