16 Extinction Rebellion rebels to appear in court on Friday 19th July

The Avon and Somerset Police is taking action to prosecute 16 people arrested and detained during Extinction Rebellion (XR) Southwest’s Summer Uprising in Bristol, which raised the alarm on the climate and ecological emergency.

*Please note we will not be putting any arrested people forward for interviews.

On Wednesday 17th July, five XR rebels locked or glued themselves to a pink bath in the middle of the M32 junction next to Cabot Circus, Bristol. A further nine rebels glued themselves to the road around them, in protest of the UK government’s inaction on climate breakdown, and many more sat close by in solidarity. In total around 40 peaceful protestors were carried off the road by police and arrested, with 16 detained overnight, some for almost 24 hours. The other 24 rebels were de-arrested straight away with no charge and released at the scene.

Between 9am and 10:30am today, the 16 Extinction Rebellion activists who were detained will appear at Bristol Magistrates’ Court. All will be charged with obstruction of the highway.

The environmental activists had travelled from all over the South West and beyond to put their freedom on the line for the climate emergency, including from Devon, Cornwall, Taunton, Stroud, Southampton and even Manchester, as well as five people from Bristol and Weston-Super-Mare.

Extinction Rebellion welcomes this opportunity to take our message into the courts.

TXR rebel and spokesperson Ellie comments:

“These prosecutions give our rebels a platform to speak the truth about the dire situation we’re in.

Our message is clear: until the government commits to going carbon neutral by 2025, we will continue to escalate our disruption. Anything later than 2025 will push us past tipping points in our delicate climate system that will spiral out of control, creating unreliable weather patterns, drought, famine and a resulting refugee crisis on an unprecedented scale. We are the fire alarm, and we are asking our leaders act as if our house is on fire, because it is. 

The recent target set by Theresa May for carbon neutrality treats the science of the recent IPCC report as if it were a politician to be negotiated with. But the climate won’t bend to our will, and we must act now to avoid the loss of all that we hold dear. We are fighting for our future, and for the future of those already struggling to survive as a result of climate change in the global south. We are urging the government to act now in respect for those who have died from the toxic air in the UK, hurricanes in Mozambique and wildfires in North America. We are watching as species die and our futures disappear before us, but there is a small window of hope. 

The next ten years are all important, and the task of converting to carbon neutrality, rewilding the land, and planting billions of trees to breathe in the carbon that we have released, is daunting even with the right political will. Currently, our leaders are imagining that we can push this issue away until 2050. And that, quite honestly, is suicide.”

More about Extinction Rebellion

The International Rebellion continues 7th October.
Stay tuned at: xrbristol.org.uk/autumn

Extinction Rebellion’s top-line demands:

  1. #TellTheTruth: As the government has now declared a Climate Emergency, we demand that they tell the truth about what is driving climate breakdown and biodiversity collapse while working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.
  2. #ActNow: The government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
  3. #BeyondPolitics: The government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.

Declaration of Rebellion:

The Extinction Rebellion Climate Factsheet for Rebels:

Contact Bristol Media Team:
What emergency? | Extinction Rebellion in Numbers