Open letter sent to all new or re-elected county councillors
Congratulations on being successfully elected to represent your ward on Nottinghamshire County Council.
As you are probably aware Extinction Rebellion Nottingham organised a Climate Camp between Trent Bridge and the County Council offices for 9 days leading up to the elections. While we were there, we spoke to many people walking alongside the Trent travelling to or from work or taking their daily exercise. Many of them were extremely concerned about the climate change emergency and wanted us to send you their picture with the frame caption that captured their feelings at the time.
Your tenure, whether you are newly elected or a seasoned councillor, comes at the most crucial time for taking the action that will give the planet the best chance of keeping with in the 1.5oC above pre industrial temperatures – we are currently at over 1.2oC and counting. Scientists are telling everyone that unless we actually reduce (as opposed to only talk about reducing) our CO2 emissions into the atmosphere significantly every year from now on, then the impact for us all including you, your family and your constituents will be catastrophic.
The County Council with its strategic and wide-ranging responsibilities and influence has a crucial part to play and we urge you to do everything you can, working cooperatively with all councillors from all parties and none, to make a difference. This temperature rise is caused by humans and human activities, including us all in Nottinghamshire, and humans are capable of slowing it down, but only if elected representatives such as yourselves take the necessary emergency action now.
What you do as an individual in the next election period in terms of the climate emergency will be your lasting legacy.
Every decision you make from now on will have its own impact on the climate.
Please consider this prior to all votes and in all discussions that you have on the council starting with the very welcome possibility of the council making the first step of declaring a “Climate Emergency” on Thursday 27th May.
Extinction Rebellion Nottingham
the busiest day !
Firstly we were still at climate camp, but also had an XR speaker at the Trade Union’s May Day rally at the Forest Rec and also on the march from John Carroll leisure centre to support the campaign to save it from closure and also headlining in the news with our participation with a UK wide action called Rebellion of One!
rebellion of one
1st May marks two years since the UK Parliament declared a climate emergency. Two years on and the Climate Change Committee and National Audit Office have said the government is doing next to nothing.
The government have missed even their own weak and irresponsible targets and the head of the Environment Agency warns us we are already hitting worse-case scenario levels.
Clearly visible behind this government’s coat of lies and greenwash are their real priorities: stay in power; bail out polluting industries; protect their own interests; and lie to us about it. Their move further towards authoritarianism with the Police and Crimes Bill makes it clear that not only do they have no plan to fix the mess we’re in, but that our actions have rattled them.
This is the desperate act of a government in denial, to censor the voices of dissent rather than face the reality of the situation we are in.
So we took action alongside hundreds of rebels around the UK
First a Climate Crime Scene
In the very early hours of the morning – Nottinghamshire County Council’s offices at County Hall were declared a Climate Crime Scene!
All entrances sealed off until they #TellTheTruth by declaring a Climate Emergency!
AND #ActNow follow our other demands of divesting the pension fund from fossil fuels and stop backing massive CO2 emitting projects like the incinerator plans for Ratcliffe-on-Soar.
AND go #BeyondPolitics by supporting the CEE bill !!
Pull the plug on climate lies
The people of this country deserve to be told the truth. But the governments both national and local are failing us.
We’ve had enough of greenwashing form all sectors and it’s time to expose the lies of the big oil companies and the complicity of the banking sector.
And no day would be complete with a little friendly conversation with a giant slightly scary puppet!
News just in of Conservative-led Devon County Council voting to support the CEE Bill. This is fantastic step forward in the campaign, which also now has the support of 108 MPs and 40 councils. This gives even more strength to our third demand to Nottingham County Council to follow this lead and pass a motion to support this bill.
Thursday spontaneously became a day of culture! There was a Samba workshop just after lunch and then Stella’s haunting musical and theatrical ‘Violin in flames’ (video coming soon!) which was an “Evocative & poignant burning violin performance, stunning costumes” (rebel reviewer!)
As the sun set over the river and home cooked culinary delights brought to feed the campers we were treated to some fabulous storytelling by Steve, Catherine and Pete. Tales set in the future, exploring different visions of living in a changed world. These stories gave a glimpse of hope for a more gentle, communal and respectful life, but acknowledging the grief and loss of rising sea levels, mass migration and extinction of many species.
The performers were from the group ‘The Storytellers of Nottingham’ and they have a family friendly zoom event on Sat 8th https://fb.me/e/7IqgFTqyr
We had some great feedback from rush hour traffic and also some time for some crafts.
Slightly quieter on the riverside today, but still meeting lots of people and having great conversations.
Warm sun and cold wind and we’re in to the second day. Fabulous conversations with people cycling and walking along the river. Talking about climate concerns they have and telling them about our three demands to the County Council.
The day started with some yoga and klezmer music. Rebel cafe supplying hot drink and some blue guitar later in the afternoon.
All this entertainment may seem like we are having a festival, but it is really good to keep the energy and positivity up because of all the serious discussions we had today with people of all ages. The climate crisis will affect every single one of us and it already is impacting many parts of the world in a devastating way. It is clear that many people already know this and feel this quite deeply.
The photo frames definitely express how a lot of people feel.
We challenge Nottingham City Councillors to listen and take action.
What a fantastic day!
Camp set up, spirits are high after a landmark not guilty verdict for XR Activists vs Shell
We have made our base outside County Hall, along the river with the intention to both make our presence known to the County Council to deliver our three demands. We want to talk to the public and invite any prospective county councillors to stop by too.
There was live music, samba drums and lots of conversations between rebels that have not seen much of each other over the last year or if they have only inside a zoom square!
Demand 1 : Tell the Truth! – Declare a Climate Emergency
The County Elections are on Thu May 6th. It’s time that Nottingham County Council stood up to their responsibilities and declared a Climate Emergency. If candidates come knocking on your door asking for your vote, make sure you talk about your concerns about the climate and ecological crisis and how the scientific truth should be built into all decision making.
Demand 2 : Act Now
No More Fossil Fuels
The County Council Pension Fund still has investments in the Fossil Fuel Industry and XR Nottingham have consistently campaigned for this money to be redirected. Read more about our DivestNotts Campaign
No More Incinerators
The Council MUST NOT give permission for the Ratcliffe-on-Soar waste incinerator. Incinerators burn mixed waste including plastics made from fossil fuels and then call it “Green Energy”. They are as polluting as coal and have no place in a world trying to reduce carbon emissions. Read more about our ‘‘Burnout’ incinerator Campaign
Demand 3 : Go Beyond Politics
Notts County Council MUST join the other 31 Local Authorities to support the CEE Bill. Local MP Nadia Whittome was co-sponsor of the proposed Bill, which if passed will put in to law ambitious conservation and protection of nature; make the government keep their promises and targets on climate change; and set up legally binding Citizens Assemblies to democratically tackle climate change. This takes power away from self-serving lobbyists and MPs who act in their own interests before the next election. More info on our CEE Bill Campaign page.