Just Stop Oil supporters cause traffic chaos slow marching on Cromwell road 

Just Stop Oil supporters are continuing into their sixth week of marching every day in central London. The supporters are demanding that the British Government halt all licences and consents for new oil, gas and coal projects. [1]

At 8:00am, around 66 Just Stop Oil supporters in three groups began marching on roads close to West Kensington station, including Cromwell Road, a major arterial route into London. Traffic was held up as long queues formed. Police were seen dragging supporters off the road at around 8:30am. One of the marches, near West Kensington station was composed of eight christians from Christian Climate Action, carrying placards saying “For God’s Sake, Just Stop Oil” and “Praying for a Future for Our Children”. Further marches are expected later this morning.

Just Stop Oil has been marching every day since April 24th. 

One of those taking action this morning, Rev’d Hilary Bond, 58, a Church of England priest from Wareham, said:

“As a Christian, I believe that care of all of creation is an integral part of the expression of my faith. I believe in a God who throughout history has put great emphasis on the desire for justice for all, and that includes climate justice. We can be part of bringing about climate justice by stopping new oil and gas exploration now.”

“Many of the poorer parts of the world are already enduring great suffering because of the effects of climate breakdown. I cannot with integrity stand by and watch this happen. We know what our continued use of fossil fuels is doing to our home and we also know that there are other, more sustainable energy options. It is time for this government to stop putting their desire for money above our desire for justice. They must stop issuing new oil, gas and coal licences now.”

Stephanie Phoenix Smith, 35, a therapeutic care worker from Stroud, Gloucestershire, said

“Silence is compliance and I do not comply with this government’s criminality. I can’t watch everything that I love burn without saying that I tried to make a difference. It’s getting hotter, the climate is changing and we are running out of time.”

“We must act now or we risk losing everything. I don’t want to be causing disruption, it’s not a fun experience, but it’s my duty as a citizen to bring attention to this unacceptable situation and to fight for a safe future for all.”

Another of those taking action this morning Matthew Stone, 26, PHD student and music teacher, from Exeter, said:

“Like anyone else, I need food to eat, safe housing to live in, healthcare when I’m sick, public infrastructure to get around, security against poverty and violence and a flourishing environment in which to pursue my hopes and dreams.”

“New oil, gas and coal, as the United Nations recently made starkly clear, puts all that at dire risk. The UK government is selling all of our futures for profit with these new licences. It is our duty to oppose this madness.”

The marches this morning come as further extreme heat is recorded over Asia. China has been experiencing an extreme heatwave, with 130 stations across ten provinces recording their highest May temperatures, with areas hitting 43C. Shanghai recorded its hottest day in May in 100 years hitting 36.7C. Record May temperatures were also recorded in Japan and Thailand with temperatures of 37C also recorded in Russia. [2][3][4][5][6]

In Israel 176 fires swept across the country as a heatwave combined with strong winds swept the country, whilst in Gaza crop failure due to extreme weather has reduced wheat yields down by 1000 tons versus last year. [7]

On Sunday, the Peruvian government proclaimed a state of emergency in the country, for a period of 60 days across 131 districts in response to the potential arrival of the El Niño phenomenon, which it is deeming an “imminent danger”. Whilst in Canada, out of control wildfires in Nova Scotia have forced 16,000 Canadians from their homes. [8][9]

Since the Just Stop Oil campaign launched on 14th February 2022, there have been 2,200 arrests and 138 people have spent time in prison, many without trial. There are currently two Just Stop Oil supporters serving three year prison sentences for resisting new oil, gas and coal.

We stand with these political prisoners, with the 1,800 victims of the UK’s 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. Ordinary people must come together to resist this criminal government and hold them to account for their genocidal policies. [10][11]

Just Stop Oil is calling on everyone to get off the sidelines and join in civil resistance against new oil, gas and coal.

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 makes a meaningful statement halting new fossil fuel projects in the UK.

Join Just Stop Oil on a slow march at midday every Saturday, at Parliament Square until we win.


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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.aljazeera.com/news/2023/5/29/shanghai-records-hottest-day-in-may-in-100-years

[3] https://twitter.com/extremetemps/status/1663150943091806214

[4] https://twitter.com/extremetemps/status/1663332406709952512

[5] https://twitter.com/extremetemps/status/1662407787593322496

[6] https://twitter.com/extremetemps/status/1663220293282791426


[8] https://www.telesurenglish.net/news/Peru-State-of-Emergency-in-131-Districts-El-Nino-Phenomenon-20230529-0002.html

[9] https://edition.cnn.com/2023/05/29/weather/nova-scotia-halifax-forest-wildfire/index.html

[10] 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/

[11] 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/