Welcome to Newsletter XTRA, where everything we couldn’t fit into the main Global Newsletter has its moment to shine. This month we cover actions in Denmark, Rwanda, Serbia, Sri Lanka, Norway, Sweden, Australia, USA, UK and more…
2 MAY | Copenhagen, Denmark: Scientist Rebellion activists and rebels splash ‘blood’ across the entrance to the Ministry of Environment, a reminder that violence against nature is violence against us. 7 activists were arrested, including 3 who were just holding a banner! Denmark is one of the most cultivated countries in the world, with only 2% protected nature. It is the third-largest issuer of exemptions for use of illegal and unapproved pesticides in the EU, and its insect populations are dwindling fast. More than half of its drinking water wells are contaminated with toxic residues.
25 APR | Kigali, Rwanda: A rebel tells it how it is: Fossil fuels = death, displacement, destruction, refugees…
1 MAY | France: Rebels took part in widespread Labour Day actions across France, including Perpignan (left) and Besancon (right).
25 APR | Lorient, France: Rebel groups from the Brittany towns of Lorient, Vannes, Concarneau and Quimper staged a die-in action against private jets.
27 APR | Washington DC, USA: Two parents terrified about their children's futures (as well as all children) smeared paint onto the stand and glass case housing a famous sculpture by Edgar Degas at the National Gallery.
MAY | Europe-wide: Simultaneous student occupations closed universities and schools in Portugal, Spain, Belgium, Germany, the Czech Republic and the UK. The wave of action, due to last all month, was under the banner of End Fossil: Occupy! It follows similar occupations last autumn at 49 schools and universities. The students aim to be the spark that ignites the rest of society into action, like the Parisian students of May '68 who galvanised one of the largest general strikes in French history under the banner, "Be Realistic, Ask for the Impossible."
23 APR | Belgrade, Serbia: A rebel marathon runner and two colleagues conveyed the message to athletes and fans at the Belgrade marathon that climate change is fast, and we have to be faster!
10 APR | Colombo, Sri Lanka: XR Sri Lanka was invited to the Youth Climate Ambassadors program organised by the British Council. They represented the Western Province as a youth climate activist group. After a presentation on XR's principals, values and activism, the rebels planned three future projects with the Western Province Youth Climate Ambassadors. These rebels-to-be will be supporting and collaborating with XR Sri Lanka in future actions.
25 APR | Bonn, Germany: Rebels rallied in front of Bonn’s train station against Mexico’s ecocidal Tren Maya project, in which the German railway organisation, Deutsche Bahn, is heavily involved. The 1525 km Tren Maya route is being built through unique, protected ecosystems and indigenous territories in the Yucatan peninsula in south-east Mexico, with the mega-project due to be completed in 2024.
29 APR | Washington DC, USA: Hundreds of Climate Defiance activists blockaded the White House Correspondents Dinner and protested the US President’s recent approval of deadly new oil and gas projects in Alaska and elsewhere.
27 APR | Oslo, Norway: Rebels greeted some 3,000 passengers who disembarked from the world’s largest methane-powered ‘gas ship’ AidaNova, which the cruise industry believes is a green solution. They handed out over 2,000 flyers that told the truth: GREEN cruising is a scam!
3 MAY | Perth, Australia: An environmental activist sprayed Woodside logos on a Police Centre and glued her arm to the glass in solidarity with the campaign to disrupt the Energy giant’s Burrup Hub liquid natural gas mega-project. In March, the activist had her 15-month prison sentence thrown out on appeal when it emerged police had made false assertions that initially led to her being jailed under new anti-protest legislation. She said: “Woodside love to slap their logo on the prized cultural institutions in this state, at the same time they spray their toxic emissions all over sacred First Nations rock art and our children's future.”
16 APRIL | Newcastle, Australia: 50 activists with Rising Tide swarmed a loaded coal train at the world's largest coal port. They climbed atop its carriage, halting it for three hours. All were arrested. Photo: Carly Cook
1 MAY | Malmö, Sweden: Rebels took to the streets for Labour Day. With many other groups they highlighted that the companies that exploit nature are the same that exploit people – through low salaries, high prices, precarious employments, lessened asylum rights, lack of healthcare … and not least the imperialism being carried out across the world in the hunt for oil, alongside the destruction of the natural world we all live in and from.
26 APR | Uppsala, Sweden: Dressed as red-listed beetles, rebels replanted indigenous trees in a section of forest cut in 2022 and subsequently turned into a construction site, despite findings of endangered cinnabar beetle larvae in the area. A rebel said: “It has taken centuries to grow this forest before the municipality decided to replace it with concrete. Today we try to undo some of the harm the municipality did when they cut down mighty trees, dug out their roots, let the undergrowth die and flattened the ground. Hopefully, the trees planted today can after many decades become the habitat of rare species again”.
4 MAY | Canary Wharf, London, UK: In their first UK gig the ‘Polymetallic Nodules’, members of Ocean Rebellion, performed a ‘shout along’ outside the Deep Sea Mining Summit. Fans joined in with deep sea favourites like ‘Butchering the seabed’ and ‘We all die (plankton)’. The band’s ear-splitting sound is a lot quieter than the noise deep sea mining inflicts on marine life, estimated at 100 times louder than a space rocket launch. Whales and other deep-diving animals rely on sound to hunt prey, locate mates, and make migrations. Deep sea mining will disrupt this, seriously damaging delicate ecosystems.
28 APRIL | Melbourne, Australia: A lone rebel climbed the spire of the Arts Centre, Melbourne and deployed a giant pink banner. He was supported by dozens of protesters and remained aloft for 3 hours before being brought down and arrested by police.
23 APRIL | Amsterdam, Netherlands: Rebels joined with other ecoactivists to rally outside and inside the AGM of ING, the country’s most polluting bank. ING invests billions into new oil and gas projects across the Global South, including in Mozambique and Colombia. The AGM was eventually suspended after 130 activist shareholders that included rebels sang, held up banners, and demanded the bank reject fossil fuels.
29 APR | Bologna, Italy: This lone rebel’s placard reads, “I am afraid my father will die from the climate crisis.” His father has heart disease and experiences the heat as a mortal threat. Italian summers are hot, and each one is now hotter than the last.