Extinction Rebellion Demonstration Reflection

by Guest Contributor

Faith in Action Volunteer Orla Breslin explains her recent demonstration in Birmingham calling for her local MP Tahir Ali to urge the government to take immediate action on climate change.

It is a hot June morning and we are joining an Extinction Rebellion demonstration in Birmingham city centre.

We are both constituents of Labour MP Tahir Ali and we come to call on him to urge the government to take immediate effective action on climate change. 

Thursday 25th June was the publication of the government’s Committee on Climate Change’s (CCC) progress report on the government’s action on achieving their target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050 – a target which is widely acknowledged as extremely inadequate.

The report has found that the steps taken so far are limited and the government is falling way behind their own target. 

In response to these findings, Extinction Rebellion wrote a letter and local groups across the UK came to their MP’s offices to deliver it. 

The letter asks the MP to speak out and hold the government to account for their inaction on climate change. It sets out that the government’s slowness to act during the Covid crisis has cost thousands of lives but slowness to act on climate change will cost millions of lives.

It also calls for a Green Recovery from the crisis, demanding that investment is put into non-carbon intensive industries for economic growth, and more provision made for renewable forms of transport; cycling, electric cars and buses. 

A handful of us gathered outside Labour HQ in central Birmingham, and one of our members spoke at length as our demonstration was live-streamed. 

We went away with our spirits raised, and with a sense of solidarity with one another. Hoping that our call will not fall on deaf ears, but determined to keep trying if it does.