Before the lights go out

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Mike Pepler (right) answering questions in the Benson Room

Following the week of protests in London and other cities by Extinction Rebellion campaigners, fellow activist Mike Pepler gave a talk to Rother Environmental Group members about the movement’s aims and objectives.

Gathered on Wednesday April 23 in the Benson room at the George Hotel, they heard the story of climate change being disavowed and denied by politicians and the public over the years. By illustrated slides he gave telling counter evidence to show the effects of global warming on ice-caps, forests and agriculture, with their threat to water and world food supplies.

Disruption in London

He spoke of the tipping point or point of no return envisaged to take place around 2050 when global warming will become irreversible. Large parts of Planet Earth would see the extinction of life forms including human kind, unless action is taken now. Individuals on their own could only achieve so much; it was essential that world politicians should respond positively to this over-riding challenge.

Prime responsibility for action must lie with the so-called developed world. The speaker drew on studies of popular uprisings to show that relatively small groups could confront and persuade the entrenched political powers to meet the common concerns of the people. The fast-growing Extinction Rebellion in Britain is part of a worldwide movement which has been holding simultaneous protests in 80 cities across 30 countries in the world.

Last week, Mike Pepler led a small group of people from Rye and district to take part in the demonstrations at Parliament Square and Marble Arch in London. He showed a video clip of Professor Jim Bendell addressing the crowd of protestors. The next stage would probably move on to quieter protest and the opening of negotiations with those in power. He answered lively questions from the floor, outlining ways of bringing individual concerns to the attention of local authorities. “We should act where we have power to act”, he said, concluding his well articulated and informed talk.

Image Credits: Kenneth Bird, Extinction Rebellion/Twitter.

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