Labour supports no new oil and gas:  a victory for civil resistance and for common sense

This is a moment to celebrate. It’s a victory for Just Stop Oil, for civil resistance and for common sense. Just Stop Oil’s demand is now at the forefront of mainstream UK political discourse and will be a key issue in the upcoming general election.

Just Stop Oil has won because we have done exactly what we set out to do:  dominate the national conversation and push ‘no new oil’ up the policy agenda. Civil resistance has won because whether you like our methods or not you have to admit they have been effective at achieving results.

Within nine months, we had 92% name recognition, thousands of headlines and millions of views on social media and, according to polling conducted last year by Social Change Lab, rather than being counterproductive, disruptive action by Just Stop Oil has increased the number of people in the UK willing to take climate action. We’ve not only inspired hundreds of people to take nonviolent direct action with our campaign, we have successfully encouraged thousands to join more moderate organisations like Friends of the Earth.

No new oil is now the policy of the Scottish and Welsh governments, the Green Party, the Liberal Democrats and, as reported yesterday, the government-in-waiting. Even the cross party Environmental Audit Committee thinks the government should set an end date for new oil and gas.  Change is coming whether this criminal government and its fossil fuel backers like it or not. Even some major banks and insurance companies, never the most ethically driven organisations, want to end their support for fossil fuels. 

Stopping new oil and gas has always been a no-brainer. So let’s stop destroying the future for our children and murdering people in the global south right now. Let’s get on with the job of a fair and equitable clean energy transition. It’s what everyone wants and what the fossil fuel workers are crying out for. 

The only people who don’t seem to get it are a tiny minority of fossilised Tory MPs who don’t seem to realise the game is up. This government has no legitimacy or democratic mandate to carry on cooking the climate. It’s game over, you cannot arrest your way out of this. It’s time to let people who actually care about this country get on with the job. 

There are seven weeks until the summer recess. We demand that the government follow the leading thinkers and end new oil and gas. If they don’t, while they jet off to the Bahamas, we will mobilise people on a scale as yet unseen. 

Neither are we letting Labour off the hook. They need to say whether they will revoke any new licences granted before the election, because if not, their pledge is meaningless. And it’s time for the Labour Party to stop calling for peaceful protesters to be criminalised and pushing for civil injunctions against those who are brave enough to stand up for an end to new oil and gas. 

It’s too soon to hang up our banners and put away our t-shirts. We won’t stop until no new oil, gas and coal is enshrined in law.  We need to keep the pressure on. Sign up for action here:


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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.