24 FEB | Indonesia The boy’s placard (right) reads ‘Your generation will die because of age, our generation will die because of the climate crisis.’
There’s always far more rebellion happening around the world than we can cover in one monthly newsletter. Unchained is a space to savour those beautiful and creative actions we couldn’t quite fit into the main issue.
One of our favourites this month is the rebellion of the trees in the German city of Weimar. Perhaps trees around the world will start sending humans similar messages!
14 FEB | Germany More than 50 trees in Weimar carried arboreal messages: ‘We are screwed’ (left) and ‘At least, make climate protection important’.
And trees - their destruction and planting - was the theme of actions in a number of other countries.
13 FEB | Rwanda XR Rwanda is rolling out a tree planting project to schools. They said: “Last year rebel David collected seeds for fast disappearing indigenous fruit trees and made a bed at home. Those who want seeds for pomegranates or guava trees can now contact us. Seeds are already packed. Seedlings are also available.”
27 FEB | France A group of rebels planted 200 trees beside a road in Dijon to draw the attention of the public authorities to the need to neutralise carbon emissions.
14 FEB | Czech Republic In the Czech town of Pardubice rebels demonstrated against the local municipality’s plans to cut down street trees.
12-21 FEB | Reunion Island, Indian Ocean On Reunion Island, a ‘department’ of France in the Indian Ocean, rebels and activists denounced the felling of trees in the Casabona forest, the ‘green lung’ park in the town of Saint Pierre. The town’s mayor said the trees had ‘no value’ and sent municipal police to protect the chainsaw crews. But after a call by Extinction Rebellion Réunion, 100 people gathered at the Casabona site and activists replanted trees where the chainsaws had passed two nights earlier. More than 31,500 people have signed a petition calling for a halt to the felling.
21 FEB | Australia Trees were also the concern of rebels protesting outside the headquarters of Simcoa, the Silicon Metal Company of Australia. In order to make silicon, Simcoa burns every year over 100,000 tonnes of old growth Jarrah, a type of eucalyptus. The timber comes from the south-west of Western Australia, an internationally recognised biodiversity hotspot.
5 MAR | Holland *‘*Burning trees on an industrial scale is bad for the climate, biodiversity and air quality. Palm tree biomass is NOT SUSTAINABLE. The construction of Vattenfall’s biomass plant at Diemen must stop immediately. That's why XR Netherlands is today blocking the entrance.’
25 FEB - 2 MAR | Denmark 5 rebels were arrested and many more were fined for peacefully blocking construction on part of the Amager Common nature reserve close to central Copenhagen. It contains meadows, lakes, forests and a range of wildlife, including protected species.
4 MAR | Democratic Republic of Congo Rebels from XR University of Goma marched in the town to raise awareness of the evils of deforestation, climate injustice and the illicit exploitation of resources.
6 FEB | Belgium Belgian rebels called upon the city of Ghent to oppose the environmental permit for the expansion of the gas plant at Ghent Ringvaart, which could generate up to 350,000 tons of CO2 a year.
10 FEB | Australia Two brave rebels blocked a Riverside Expressway off-ramp in the heart of Brisbane. They erected a triangle of temporary fencing and attached themselves to it with bicycle locks around their necks. One rebel said she decided on civil disobedience to put ‘pressure on governments driving the climate and ecological emergency with the gas-led Covid recovery.’
25-27 FEB | Poland
A coordinated wave of street blocking took place in a number of Polish cities, including Warsaw, Wroclaw, Bydgoszcz, Poznan and Szczecin. Several rebels were arrested. At the same time German rebels held a series of road blockades in the city of Dortmund.
The Polish actions were kicked off by a courageous ‘rebellion of one’. In this astonishing video you can watch as the rebel blocks one lane of a busy main road in Wroclaw while cars speed past him in the other lane.
Photo: Agencja Gazeta
On 4 March, rebels in the city of Lodz followed up with their own examples of ‘rebellion of one’ - in spite of angry drivers and aggressive passers-by. ‘Yes,’ they said, ‘you can say that we disturbed the drivers or caused a traffic hazard. But we did it because NOBODY LISTENS. For years, scientists and governments have known that the climate crisis is a serious threat. For years, activists around the world have spoken, protested and petitioned in the hope that governments and corporations will finally make a difference.’
28 FEB | Canada Three rebels were arrested after blocking an intersection in Vancouver. It took several hours for the Vancouver Police Department (VPD) to remove two rebels on tripods, using a chainsaw to dismantle the first tripod and a fire truck to reach the second. All three rebels were released quickly and the VPD did not resort to violence - in stark contrast to how they treat Indigenous land defenders. Photo: Kelly Tatham/Grace Grignon.
17 FEB | Indonesia A rebel banner drop demands that Indonesia declare a climate emergency.
1 MAR | Finland Finnish rebels staged a number of actions in Helsinki to demand that Finland’s TV and other media tell the truth about the climate emergency. It included a spectacular ‘blood-soaked’ action in the Sanoma House in Finlandia Park. The banner reads ‘Silence Is Bloodshed - Tell The Truth’. The actions launched XR Finland’s Writing Crisis campaign, which will include demonstrations across Finland during the spring.
1 MAR | Israel Oil-drinking ocean rebels, together with symbolic ‘dead’ turtles, visited the Ministry of Energy in Tel Aviv to protest the devastating oil spill in February on the country’s Mediterranean coast. Photo: Yair Golan and Erez Harodi.
3 MAR | USA A coalition of groups gathered at the New York City headquarters of Black Rock investment firm and Chase Bank to demand that ‘these money monsters stop funding climate disaster’. Watch the oilheads puking on the earth.
1 MAR | UK A Barclays Bank branch in London becomes a Climate Crime Scene. Barclays is a major funder of oil, gas and coal projects around the world.
24 FEB | Holland ‘Stop Financing the Climate Crisis’. Rebels from XR Agriculture blocked the head offices of Rabobank in Utrecht. The multinational Dutch bank is a global leader in the financing of industrial farming.
FEB | UK Posters like these appeared across the UK during February as part of an Extinction Rebellion initiative - TruthTeller.Life - to encourage sharing of insider information about the Climate and Ecological Crisis, and to give others the courage to do the same. We hope the truths exposed will help to drive urgent, planetary-wide change.