Mass Civil Disobedience in Australia and Canada
Two large, well organized, but apparently unrelated actions today on either side of the globe underscore the rising intensity of the fight for climate justice.
In Australia, about 150 activists were arrested in the capitol as they demanded a strong, legally binding treaty in Copenhagen. Newcastle Rising Tide takes credit for the action, and you can find more photos here. The AFP reports on the story here, with this:
“The demonstrators have converged on the front entrance to parliament house, blocking public access to the building,” a police spokesman told AFP.
The citizens were called to action by frustrations with the Prime Minister who they feel has gone back on his campaign promises and not done enough to keep big polluters out of crafting climate policy.
“This has been a true expression of the deep sense of betrayal many Australians feel about Kevin Rudd’s lack of effective action on climate change,” said Georgina Woods, spokesperson for the demonstration. “We voted for this government so they would stand up to the big polluters, and lead the world on dealing with the impending climate crisis.” Read more about it at Indybay.org
Across the world, in Calgary, Alberta, citizens were taking direct action, apparently organized by Canada Climate Justice. From their blog:
The first of a series of citizen-organized peaceful sit-ins targeting elected officials, tar sands financiers, and the coal and tar sands industries began today at Canadian Environment Minister Jim Prentice’s Calgary constituency office. Six people – five of whom are constituents of Minister Prentice – entered the office just after 10:00 AM refusing to leave, demanding that the Harper government and all parties act to combat the climate crisis and stop the millions of deaths and displacements that will result from more inaction on global warming pollution.
The most recent update, as of 3pm, was that the protesters were still there and prepared to stay until the police forced them out at the close of business. You can see more pictures from the day here.
If you have more information on either of these actions, please post it here, as we’ll be watching for updates.