Woking residents join Extinction Rebellion protest

SEVERAL Woking residents attended demonstrations in London by Extinction Rebellion calling for the government to declare a climate and ecological emergency.

Lizzy Harley, a science journalist who lives in St John’s, was at the protest last week, having attended in April.

Lizzy Harley and her son near Whitehall during the demonstration.
Picture by Gemma Bradshaw

Lizzy, who took her two-year-old son to the demonstration, said she was involved with Extinction Rebellion because she believes that climate change and environmental damage is a symptom of a society that is fundamentally broken, that thrives on inequality.

“I want to empower myself and my child to change that. I was genuinely impressed by how family-friendly the April Rebellion was.

“My son enjoyed running up and down Waterloo Bridge, in and out of the temporary trees.”

Alix Goldring, from Brookwood, was also at the demonstrations, attending on a day off from her work as an administrator and when she could get childcare for her three-year-old son.

Alix, who stood as a Green Party candidate for Knaphill in elections for Woking Borough Council earlier this year, said having a young child made her particularly aware of environmental issues.

“I have an interest in the future beyond my own life and want my child to have a healthy planet to live in,” Alix said.

She said that, contrary to some reports in the national media, the demonstration was peaceful and respectful.

“The political system is broken and this sort of peaceful civil disobedience raises the awareness of that. Pressure needs to be put on the government so that drastic changes are made,” Alix said.

Lizzy, who has a PhD in evolutionary biology, said the attitude of the Prime Minister, who called the protesters “uncooperative crusties” and the government was not surprising but still disappointing.

Alix and Lizzy and the other Woking participants were among thousands of people around the world who set out to disrupt capital cities around the world, by blocking roads, bridges and transport links.

Earlier this year Woking Borough Council was one of several in Surrey to declare a climate emergency, and made a pledge to make their wholly-owned companies carbon neutral by 2030.

For the full story get the 17 October edition of the News & Mail

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