Just Stop Oil supporters formally invite Commissioner Mark Rowley to engage in talks

Today at 12:10 pm, two Just Stop Oil supporters visited Scotland Yard to deliver a letter inviting Mark Rowley to a formal meeting. Just Stop Oil supporters have been causing disruption in London over the past several weeks to demand that the UK government immediately halts all new licenses and consents for fossil fuel exploration and extraction. [1]

The letter was refused by the staff at Scotland Yard. However, Just Stop Oil is also in touch with the Metropolitan Police by email and social media, and hope to arrange a meeting with the Commissioner as soon as possible.

Today’s letter from Just Stop Oil comes in response to a request from Commander Kyle Gordon that “Just Stop Oil come forward and speak with us, so we can actually work with them.” [2]

The letter from Just Stop Oil reads:

Dear Sir Mark Rowley, 

Recent statements from the Met Police indicate that policing Just Stop Oil actions has cost the police nearly £20 million. What a waste, and as you point out, arresting non-violent grandmothers, teenagers, vicars, medics, engineers is not the best use of your resources. We have previously reached out to you, and various police federations earlier this year. Just Stop Oil representatives would be able to meet with you, at your Scotland Yard office, in the week commencing 11th December 2023. If this is not convenient please provide us with an alternative date.

Previously, Just Stop Oil has repeatedly attempted to open dialogue with the Metropolitan Police, but have received no response. In October 2023, a Just Stop Oil supporter delivered an open letter to Mark Rowley, which can be read here.

A Just Stop Oil spokesperson said:

“We understand that the vast majority of officers serving in the Metropolitan Police have stepped into their role out of a profound sense of duty and a desire to protect and serve their communities. Despite our obvious differences, that desire to protect our communities is something that we all share. However, objectively, at the present time, the leadership of this country are making decisions that threaten our homes, our families, our communities and our entire way of life. 

Continued expansion of oil and gas, against the advice of the entire scientific consensus, is leading to crop failure, food shortages and will eventually lead to mass civil unrest, social collapse and an end to the rule of law. I would ask those serving in the police force to consider the actions that they take at this time very seriously. 

How will you answer your children in the years to come, when they ask you ‘what did you do’ to stop this crisis unfolding? Did you follow the orders of the people directly profiting from the industries ravaging our shared home? Did you facilitate the actions of people that future generations will come to regard as criminals of the highest order? Or did you make another choice? Did you follow through on your commitment to protect and serve your community and to protect the interests of your children and of generations to come?” 

One of those delivering the letter today is Pippa Cowtan, who is 22 years old and a recent politics graduate from London. She said:

“I have been arrested numerous times by the Metropolitan police for nonviolent acts of civil resistance. I have had friends as young as 18 imprisoned, without trial, for trying to demand the government protect them, instead of only serving the interests of corporations and billionaires. 

Meanwhile, the powerful men profiting off the destruction of my home and my future are walking free. I just graduated, and in my lifetime scientists are predicting major ecological and social collapse. How can I plan for a future that is in such jeopardy? The police must act and hold the real criminals to account.” 

Continued expansion of new oil and gas will bring about the wholesale destruction of ordered society and an end to the rule of law. We are not prepared to watch while the government continues to serve the interests of a few, at the expense of everyone else. It’s up to all of us to come together and resist. It is the will of the overwhelming majority of people that we take the actions necessary to ensure our survival and together we can make it happen.

Our government is waging war on its people, and we’re fighting back. They’re the real criminals – imprisoning peaceful people for taking proportionate action to protect their communities, whilst licensing more than 100 new oil and gas projects, which will destroy everything we value. We’re coming together to demand an end to new oil and gas. It’s not a case of ‘if’ we will win; but ‘when’.


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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://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-67639741