Amsterdam, 26 April 2019 – This morning over 120 people took to the streets of Amsterdam to block major roads and raise awareness for the looming climate crisis. Six groups caused disruption during rush hour by blocking roads for seven minutes at a time. The rebels of Extinction Rebellion want to wake people up to the destruction we are causing to our earth, and all the living At the expense of slightly inconveniencing commuters, the economy is affected, forcing politicians to react. The rebels handed out flyers to drivers, including an explanation and an apology. They could also snack on a cookie, while they waited.
‘Our government’s lack of action in addressing this climate crisis compels us to disrupt everyday life, in order to prevent major disruption to our very existence. Almost everything has been tried before; including petitions, political parties, campaigns etc. Still, the climate problem is larger than ever, says spokesperson Kate Mitchell, ‘Civil disobedience has been very successful in the past, therefore it seems like this is our only option at this time. An important part of our movement is the nonviolent way in which we take action and communicate. The extinction of a million species, including the human race, are at stake. We, as Extinction Rebellion, can no longer sit back and watch this happen.’
Inspired by Extinction Rebellion UK, who grew to a massive movement in the last weeks, ‘swarming’ is a tactic which can be used by relatively little people. The actions we did are part of the International Week of Rebellion, which was declared on the 15th of April, in 80 cities in 33 countries. To confront the government, our politicians and climate destructing companies with the harsh reality of the climate crisis, Extinction NL organised almost daily actions.
Since Extinction Rebellion arose in the UK, the movement attracted an incredible number of people throughout the world. We demand the Dutch government to take responsibility and tell the truth about the crisis, take drastic measures to be CO2 neutral by 2025 and to create a deltaplan for the climate. The term deltaplan originates from a great flooding in 1953, where 1836 people lost their lives. It was only after that disaster, that the government started to built the famous water protection system. We demand the government to act with the same urgency as they did then. Extinction Rebellion demands a citizens assembly. Climate justice is the last and final demand of the movement, it proposes that the costs for energy transition will have be paid by the biggest polluters.
XR NL is a movement of all ages and backgrounds, including many young people who want to take action, in a nonviolent manner, and create change for their- and future generations. ‘Through creative actions, we want to inspire people from all walks of life to join this mass movement and hereby contribute to a better future for ourselves and each other. Daily, hundreds of species go extinct as a result of the sixth mass extinction, for which humans are to blame. Right now, we are in the middle of an ecological crisis and there are already countless victims of climate change. Therefore, we demand action from the government immediately.’ (Kate Mitchell, 20)