A protest has closed the A34 Oxford Street in Manchester City Centre between Mount Street and Portland Street. The global environmental movement are planning to block streets London, Manchester and Cardiff this week as they continue their calls for MPs to back a climate emergency bill hold a national citizens’ assembly on the crisis. Extinction Rebellion is holding 10 days of demonstrations throughout the country as part of its ongoing campaign to highlight climate change.
Today, five groups will block roads in the capital as they descend on Westminster.
Extinction Rebellion said in a press release: “The Government is failing to do what’s necessary to keep people safe. We are here, taking action, because their criminal negligence is putting lives at risk.
“They must not be allowed to carry on like this. We have an opportunity to turn this sinking ship around but we must act now, not next year, not in ten years. Now.
“You don’t need to be told by Extinction Rebellion how bad this crisis is. Just look around you, look at California, Brazil, Mauritius, Wales, your own backyard.
Extinction Rebellion protestors have shut down Manchester after a demonstration in the city cent
Extinction Rebellion are protesting through Manchester City Centre
“Our world is unravelling. It’s never been more clear that we are in a state of planetary emergency.
“The social contract between Government and its citizens is broken. We refuse to be bystanders and wait for this emergency to push beyond the point of no return.
“While those in the global South burn, while our children are set to pay for our mistakes, while our most vulnerable in society suffer first and worst. This is why we act.”
The Metropolitan Police has imposed conditions against protests planned for today, which state gatherings can only take place off the main roads at Parliament Square Gardens between 8am and 7pm.
Flyers are being handed out to passers by outlining the aims of this week’s protests
But the group is planning to stage marches at several landmarks in the capital, before moving to Parliament Square in Westminster and Trafalgar Square.
Several events are set to take place up until September 10, including a “theatrical” display highlighting “how the climate crisis is causing death”, as well as a silent protest outside Buckingham Palace.
The “carnival of corruption” is one event set to take place outside the Treasury over the coming days, as well as the “walk of shame” near the Bank of England.
The Metropolitan Police has warned no boats, vehicles, trailers or other structures may form part of the procession at any point on its route on Tuesday.
There were also Extinction Rebellion protests in Manchester over the weekend
Extinction Rebellion are planning 10 days of protests throughout the country
They said: “Failure to comply with these conditions may result in arrest.”
Metropolitan Police commander Jane Connors said on Monday: “Ahead of a number of planned environmental protests due to take place in central London tomorrow, we have decided to impose conditions under Section 12 and Section 14 of the Public Order Act (1986) on protesters looking to assemble, and those looking to go on a procession.
“The reason we have implemented these conditions is that we know these protests may result in serious disruption to local businesses, commuters and our communities and residents, which I will not tolerate.
“If you take part in tomorrow’s assembly or processions and knowingly fail to comply with these conditions, or incite others to fail to comply, you may commit an offence and may be liable to arrest.”
Extinction Rebellion protest against the Silvertown Road Tunnel outside the offices of Transport for London
There are planned protests for Wales outside the Senedd and in Cardiff Bay over rising sea levels.
There is also a national day of action planned September 4 to focus on HS2, with protests in London, Manchester and along the planned rail line.
Extinction Rebellion had planned protests for April but these were cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The campaign group insisted it is encouraging all protesters to maintain social distancing, wear gloves and a mask, and bring hand sanitiser.
Extinction Rebellion protests brought central London to a standstill last year
Paul Stephens, part of Extinction Rebellion’s police liaison team, revealed the group had received a letter from police warning organisers of gatherings of more than 30 people risked a fine of £10,000.
He warned: “It’s a vague threat over coming out to protest about such a serious thing as extinction.
“It’s playing a political game. We’re going to challenge that as we go forward.”