There has been a surge in protests led by the global environmental movement, Extinction Rebellion (XR).
This new wave has occurred nationwide. For instance, there have been banners sighted near Southampton, on the M27 and Castle Way. These banners are filled with slogans reading messages such as; ‘Love not hate- we grow as one’, ‘Climate Emergency’, ‘Rebel for Life’ and ‘No future in fossil fuels.’ They were placed in these areas before rush hour, in the hopes that commuters will see the message they want to convey.
When contacting Wessex Scene, XR noted how the banners ‘were put up in accordance with safety procedures and with the knowledge of local police.’ Also, they highlighted how ‘protesters have been accompanying them all day, and will be removing them for reuse’, emphasising their aim at protecting the environment.
XR placed the banners in order to raise awareness of their belief in the need for debate over the Climate and Ecological Emergency. As mentioned on their website, ‘human activity is causing irreplaceable harm to the life on this world.’ This emergency refers to how an increase in human activity and consumption is causing damage to Earth.
Other areas of debate for XR within Southampton include their opposition to the expansion of the airport. When viewing the Twitter page, ‘Extinction Rebellion Southampton’, they have outlined their aversion to these changes. Main areas of concern include more air pollution, noise impacts and the increase in carbon emissions.
The XR movement was founded in 2018, with supporters spreading messages of protecting the environment, as well as aiming to avoid climate change, loss of biodiversity and the risk of social and ecological collapse. In other words, XR is an ‘international movement that uses non-violent civil disobedience in an attempt to halt mass extinction and minimise the risk of social collapse.’
The protests are next planned to be focused in London, Cardiff and Manchester.