Just Stop Oil block approach roads to Lambeth Bridge

Just Stop Oil supporters block approach to Lambeth Bridge on fifth day of action to demand no new oil and gas

Around 30 supporters of Just Stop Oil have disrupted traffic in Westminster today for the fifth day in a row to demand an end to new oil and gas.  [1]

The group sat down on the approach roads to Lambeth Bridge at 11.30am establishing roadblocks and halting traffic on two key roads. Some have glued themselves to the road, and a number have locked on.

The actions this month are timed to coincide with the planned launch of a new round of oil and gas licensing by the North Sea Transition Authority (NSTA) in which over 100 new licences for oil and gas projects are likely to be awarded. The NSTAs chief executive said yesterday that a number of gas projects in the southern North Sea will be fast-tracked although this will do nothing to reduce the UK’s dependence on imported fossil fuels.[2]

Just Stop Oil’s occupation of Westminster also comes against a background of an energy price hike on October 1st which means almost 8 million households are expected to fall into fuel poverty by April 1st 2023, while energy companies make massive profits. Our Prime Minister has made it clear that she has no plan to deal with the crisis that does not involve further suffering for the most vulnerable and tax giveaways for the rich. [3]

Jessica Upton, 53 a mother of two and veterinarian from Oxford said:

I wouldn’t be doing my job properly as a foster carer, vet and mother if I wasn’t doing my utmost to ensure an inhabitable planet for everyone. Fighting climate change is the ultimate preventative medicine. 

Our government is failing to take the steps necessary to address the cost of living and climate crisis, so if sitting in a road being yelled at by motorists is what it takes to get their attention, I’ll keep doing it. Stopping new fossil fuel projects is the simple first step our government needs to take to start protecting its people.

Mya Bain, 35 an animator and science communicator  from Derbyshire said:

Ordinary people are going to suffer and die from the cost of living crisis and climate breakdown. Yet instead of supporting the transition to cheap clean renewables our criminal Government is doing everything they can to protect the interests of the fossil fuel industry. I can not stand by and do nothing while these greedy liars in power let millions suffer just to let the rich get richer. 

Government is actively contributing to climate breakdown which means millions of people dying due to extreme weather, thirst, starvation and conflict. They are slashing public services, handing out tax cuts to the rich, licensing more fossil fuel developments and ripping up environmental regulations because of their delusional ideas about economic growth and trickle down economics. Everyone needs to be in resistance to halt this government’s murderous plan.

A spokesperson for Just Stop Oil said:

“Those causing disruption on the bridges and in the streets around Westminster have made a choice to no longer standby when faced with a harmful government. Everyday life has become unaffordable for millions, desperate workers are striking and the reality of living through a mass extinction event is being ignored.

We have no choice and it seems the courts are recognising that these actions are proportiated, magistrates are acquitting defendants, judges are handing out petty fines and juries are finding those acting in non-violent civil disobedience not guilty. When will the government do the right thing? We don’t need a tired, stale, pro-growth government we need a pro-life one.” 

This is not a one day event, this is an act of resistance against a criminal government and their genocidal death project. Our supporters will be returning – today, tomorrow and the next day – and the next day after that – and every day until our demand is met: no new oil and gas in the UK.

We will not stand by while everything we know and love is wilfully destroyed. We do this because it is the right thing to do and so we have a duty, a responsibility to continue.

We will not be intimidated by changes to the law, we will not be stopped by private injunctions sought to silence peaceful people. Our supporters understand that these are irrelevant when set against mass starvation, slaughter, the loss of our rights, freedoms and communities.

Stand with our supporters in prison, with the 1700 murdered across the global, for protecting our futures. We will not die silently, it will be ordinary people, like you, your friends, colleagues and neighbours who do what our government cannot. It will take all of us. [4]


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Notes to Editors

[1] Just Stop Oil is a coalition of groups working together to demand that the government immediately halt all future licensing and consents for the exploration, development and production of fossil fuels in the UK. More information here: https://juststopoil.org/ 

[2]  https://www.ft.com/content/8146804f-770e-42ee-8435-72469f92b4fd

[3] https://www.endfuelpoverty.org.uk/news/

[4] There are now 8 Just Stop Oil supporters in prison on remand or serving sentences for taking action to demand that the government halts new oil and gas licences. They are Rajan Naidu, Sarah Benn, Simon Milner-Edwards, Margaret Reid, Michelle Charlesworth, Barry Mitchell, Joshua Smith and Louis McKechnie. In addition, Scott Breen is in prison for taking action against the Southampton to Heathrow pipeline and Elliott Cuciurean is in prison for taking action against HS2.