XR action on County Hall
Tuesday 19 – Wednesday 20 July, County Hall, Lewes
In addition to the Divest East Sussex protests, Extinction Rebellion are also holding two days of action to demand that East Sussex County Council meet its commitments to tackle the climate and environmental emergency. Mark Engineer of XR explains why and how to find out more.
Extinction Rebellion groups from across East Sussex will be holding two days of action at the County Council’s offices in Lewes on 19 and 20 July.
The action will come hot on the heels of Divest East Sussex protest on 12 July. But it’s really important to stress that this is additional to what Divest East Sussex are doing. We’re coming together from all over the county. We’ll be there, outside the Council’s offices, for two whole days. And we’ll be bringing some serious pressure to bear.
Also, this is about more than divestment. Of course, we fully back Divest East Sussex’s demand for the Council to pull its pension fund out of fossil fuels. But we’re not just calling for that. We’re demanding the Council takes meaningful action on ALL its commitments to tackle the climate and environmental emergency (CEE.) Its current plans for “net zero by 2050” are inadequate on many, many levels.
No meaningful plan to tackle emissions
The Council declared a climate emergency in 2019. But like many others, they have declared an emergency and then done nothing. As if the declaration itself counted as action, as if words can somehow lower emissions. And 2050 might sound good, but it’s actually massively unambitious.
But when you dig a bit deeper, it’s much worse. The net zero target relates to the emissions which stem only from the Council’s own activities. These equate to just 3% of the total emissions across East Sussex. There’s no meaningful plan to tackle emissions on a county-wide scale.
The Council is badly failing the people of East Sussex and threatening the future of our children. Quite simply, they are just not cutting it.
So we plan to remind our elected councillors of their responsibilities!
The two days of action will coincide with a full Cabinet meeting on 19 July, and the meeting of the notorious Pension Committee on 20 July. Plus Divest East Sussex will be holding their three-day fast and vigil on 18-20 July. Yes, that’s right. People have now got so desperate they are prepared to starve themselves – and still the Council won’t even divest from fossil fuels. Well, we’ll be demanding they do that and a whole lot more.
We know from talking to people across the county – not activists, but ordinary people with kids and grandkids and fears about the future – how much anger there is at the Council’s lack of action. We need that anger! So please come along.
What will be happening
We’ll certainly kick off with a protest at County Hall on the morning of Tuesday 19 July. Then it’ll be a two-day rolling programme of events. As soon as we’ve finalised our plans, we’ll post them on the XR Lewes website.
Block out your diaries! Come and join us for two days of colour, noise, rage and love.