“We need to get off our screens and onto the streets!”-  Just Stop Oil supporters vow to continue marching in face of government crackdown

Just Stop Oil supporters are back on the streets of central London to demand an end to new fossil fuel projects in the UK. [1]

At 10am this morning, 91 Just Stop Oil supporters began marching from four different locations in Lambeth and Westminster. This is the second week of daily slow marches which saw disruption brought to the heart of power every day last week.

The police, under pressure from the Home Secretary to crack down on ‘slow-walking’ protests, issued Public Order Act (S12) notices to remove Just Stop Oil supporters from the roads last week. The Home Secretary is currently seeking to grant new powers to police under secondary legislation, in order to bypass the democratic parliamentary process. [2]

Today’s marches are taking place as record heat waves sweep through Asia and Europe. Spain is experiencing its hottest April ever recorded, with temperatures 10-15C warmer than usual, reaching 39C in the south of the country. Asia has been experiencing weeks of “endless record heat” with the highest April temperatures ever recorded at monitoring stations across Thailand, Myanmar, Laos and Vietnam, as well as in China and South Asia.  [3][4]

A Just Stop Oil spokesperson said:

“Our democracy has been hijacked by zealots who are pursuing extremist economic and governance models that are killing millions. The selfish criminals in government are prioritising their own greed over the lives of the hardworking majority in this country. The people of the United Kingdom will not stand by as our leaders pursue genocidal policies at the behest of corporate elites.”

“The government has been bought by the fossil fuel lobby, with the Conservatives taking £3.5 million in legalised bribes during 2022, resulting in subsidies to the industry to the tune of £256 million every week. This is while the people of this country struggle to survive. We need to get off our screens and onto the streets! Join us in Parliament Square at 7am tomorrow or sign up at juststopoil.org.” 

It was recently reported that the Conservatives received £3.5 million from polluters, fossil fuel interests and climate deniers in 2022. [5]

One of those taking action today, Peter Harrison, 68, a retired postal worker and doorman, from London, said:

“Why is the government ignoring the death and destruction caused by our rapidly warming climate by handing out a bucket load of new oil licences? Where is their compassion, where is their humanity?”

“They are prioritising profits over people’s lives. Our children and grandchildren are obviously not factored into their annual accounts.”

Since the Just Stop Oil campaign began on April 1st 2022, there have been over 2,100 arrests and 138 people have spent time in prison, many without trial. There are currently two Just Stop Oil supporters and four Insulate Britain supporters serving prison sentences for resisting new oil, gas and coal.

We stand with these political prisoners, with the 1,800 victims of our broken criminal justice system, imprisoned for over a year without trial, and with the 1,700 murdered across the global south, for protecting all our lives. This is the moment for us to come together and resist the destruction of everything we love, something that is being imposed on us by a few, who only seek to enrich themselves. [4][5]

In moments of emergency, we must stand up and be brave, we must stand up for good over evil, life over death, right over wrong. Just Stop Oil is calling on everyone to pick a side. We need everyone to get off the sidelines and join in civil resistance against new oil and gas.

The time is now. Join us and slow march while you still can. Our indefinite campaign of civil resistance is underway and will not end until our government ends new oil, gas and coal.

Join Just Stop Oil on a slow march from 7am every weekday and midday every Saturday, at Parliament Square until we win. [6]


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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. Just Stop Oil is a member of the A22 Network of civil resistance projects. Climate Emergency Fund is Just Stop Oil’s primary funder for recruitment, training, and capacity building.

Just Stop Oil ‘Blue Lights’ policy: our policy is, and has always been, to move out of the way for emergency vehicles with siren sounding and ‘blue lights’ on.

[2]  https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/climate-protest-slow-walking-police-b2328346.html

[3] https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/apr/27/spain-braced-for-record-april-temperature-of-39c-as-heatwave-causes-misery

[4] https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/apr/27/endless-record-heat-asia-highest-april-temperatures

[5] https://www.desmog.com/2023/03/30/conservatives-received-3-5-million-from-polluters-fossil-fuel-interests-and-climate-deniers-in-2022/

[6] Fair Trials reports that the number of people being held in prison without trial in England and Wales is at its highest for over 50 years, with 1,800 people in prison without trial for at least a year. https://www.fairtrials.org/articles/news/highest-number-of-people-on-remand-in-england-and-wales-for-over-50-years/

[7] A recent report from Global Witness says that more than 1,700 people have died while trying to prevent mining, oil drilling or logging on their lands. https://www.globalwitness.org/en/press-releases/deadly-decade-land-and-environmental-activists-killing-every-two-days/

[8] Excluding May 6th.