Just Stop Oil supporters paint the Wellington Arch to demand an end to new oil and gas.

Three Just Stop Oil supporters have painted the Wellington Arch to demand the UK government immediately halt all new oil and gas projects and to call on the public to march in London from 29th October. [1]

At approximately 10:15 this morning, three Just Stop Oil supporters set off smoke flares and sprayed orange paint on the Wellington Arch, using fire extinguishers. They then displayed banners reading ‘Just Stop Oil’ and waited for police to arrive and arrest them.

Wellington Arch, also known as the Constitution Arch or Green Park Arch, is a Grade I-listed triumphal arch designed by Decimus Burton, that forms a centrepiece of Hyde Park Corner in central London, between the corner where Hyde Park meets Green Park.

One of those taking action this morning is Joshua Lane, 26, an engineer from Sheffield. He said:

“I am compelled to take action due to the severity, and sheer emergency we find ourselves in today. Future generations live in uncertainty, and we are given false promises time after time by endless pantomime governments. Humanity faces the biggest crisis in history, and yet the government continuously ignores the facts, and only thinks of themselves and the billionaire oil barons they serve. One thing that cannot be ignored is the power of ordinary people, and our voices are only continuing to grow louder.”

Also taking action today was Joe Hogan, 40, from Hertfordshire. He said:

“I’m angry. I’m anxious. I’m depressed. We are out of time; we have to act now. Not tomorrow, not next year, not 2050; NOW. But our government continues with business-as-usual, burning our futures to enrich their friends, while enacting draconian legislation to stamp out dissent. I refuse to be cowed. Traditional, managed, sanitised forms of protest have done nothing; the only way forward is through sustained, disruptive civil resistance. That’s why I will be marching in London from the 29th October and you should too. Sign up at juststopoil.org

Today’s action comes as extreme weather continues to disrupt the UK, killing at least seven and leaving hundreds homeless after around 1,250 properties have flooded in England. The environment agency has issued more than 300 flood alerts and a new wave of heavy rain could bring flooding and disruption to much of London and southern England according to a fresh Met Office weather warning. 

In recent days, there have been cancellations and severe delays to rail services across the country, with King Cross station being evacuated due to overcrowding as people attempted to travel north. Recent analysis has found that damage caused by the climate crisis through extreme weather has cost $16m (£13m) an hour for the past 20 years. It found average costs of $140bn (£115bn) a year from 2000 to 2019. [2][3]

Our leaders cannot continue to ignore and exacerbate this crisis by drilling for new oil, while floods and fires consume everything we hold dear. In November, we are calling for daily marches in London until the government comes to its senses and stops new oil and gas. Just Stop Oil is calling on everyone to join us in civil resistance. Sign up for action here: https://juststopoil.org/take-action/


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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.

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://news.sky.com/story/uk-weather-storm-babet-followed-by-new-met-office-warnings-of-flooding-risk-after-days-of-dangerous-conditions-12991389

[3] https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/oct/09/climate-crisis-cost-extreme-weather-damage-study