Just Stop Oil slow marches as world sprints past ecological tipping points

Just Stop Oil supporters are wrapping up their ninth week of daily action to demand that the UK Government halts all licences and consents for new oil, gas and coal projects. [1]

At around 8 am, 28 Just Stop Oil supporters, in four groups, began marching on key roads near Vauxhall, Waterloo, Fleet street and Islington. A frustrated white van man was seen shunting marchers with his vehicle on Millbank at 8:05. Two marches were issued section 12 notices and forced off the road by 8:20. One march had no traffic behind, so couldn’t even meet the threshold of causing minor disruption. The two remaining marches were off the road by 8:35, one having been forced off after a lorry attempted to run over the mini-march at Highbury Corner. Further marches are expected later this morning.

One of those on the road this morning, Mella Shaw 45, a Teacher from Edinburgh, said:

“I am here for my son and all the young people who currently have a terrifying future of climate chaos ahead of them. I can’t just stand by, be silent and do nothing, while this government ignores even the recommendations of its own scientific advisors.”

“I am here so that I can look my six year old son in the eye and tell him that I am doing everything I can to give him a future. I have to do everything I can to stop this criminal government issuing more oil, gas and coal licences.

Another of those on the road this morning Felix Lozano, 60, a graphic designer from Hastings, said:

“I don’t want to be causing disruption, in any other circumstance walking in the road would be totally unacceptable, but what else can I do? If I stood on the pavement I’d be ignored, but by causing disruption it forces the conversation.”

“I have to put my body in the way of business as usual. We cannot continue ignoring this crisis pretending everything is fine. Our home is dying; we need action now.”

Today’s marches come as a new study published yesterday warns that Ecological collapse is likely to start sooner than previously believed. The study models how tipping points can amplify and accelerate one another. Based on these findings, the authors warn that more than a fifth of ecosystems worldwide, including the Amazon rainforest, are at risk of a catastrophic breakdown within a human lifetime. “It could happen very soon,” said Prof Simon Willcock of Rothamsted Research, who co-led the study. [2]

Just Stop Oil supporters have completed up to seven marches a day, six days a week since the 24th April. Over 600 ordinary people from all over the UK have taken part. Including arrests at the Coronation and cultural and sporting events there have been over 160 arrests this year and 50 people have been charged with various offences including failure to comply with Public Order Act (section 12) conditions. 

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. Just Stop Oil supporters Morgan Trowland and Marcus Decker are currently serving three year prison sentences for resisting new oil, gas and coal. [3]

On Saturday 24th of June, members of the public are marching en masse in Westminster to demand that Just Stop Oil supporter Marcus Decker is not deported to Germany, as has recently been threatened by the Home Office. He and Morgan Trowland were recently handed the severest sentences in British legal history for peaceful climate action after they scaled the Dartford Bridge in October 2022. The mass protest will begin at Parliament Square at 12:00, with Marcus’ case having become a national ‘cause célèbre’.

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.theguardian.com/environment/2023/jun/22/ecological-tipping-points-could-occur-much-sooner-than-expected-study-finds?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other

[3] https://juststopoil.org/2023/05/31/german-just-stop-oil-protester-who-scaled-dartford-crossing-faces-deportation-for-his-act-of-compassion/