A group of over 100 British scientists, academics and writers have signed a “Declaration of Rebellion” against the government of the United Kingdom for its active support of the fossil fuel industry and lack of action in the global climate change planetary emergency.
The October 31st call to action against the UK government is, according to the announcement from the group, “For criminal inaction in the face of climate change catastrophe and ecological collapse.” The group says climate change is already destroying ecosystems around the world and requires more than just ordinary protests to cause governments and other organizations to do something drastic – now.
As Andrew Simms of the New Weather Institute said as the announcement of the Declaration was made, “This is almost a cry of desperation”.
Separately, ExtinctionRebellion plans to follow the UK group’s Declaration with an international movement calling for “Repeated acts of disruptive, non-violent civil disobedience” to push governments to do something on the scale of a World War mobilization to combat climate change. The group knows what it is up against in this, saying they expect “there will be mass arrests”.
The critical nature of the protests was called out this week when the Worldwide Fund for Nature recently issued a report that over 60% of the global animal populations was destroyed over the last 50 years – because of humans.
In another new study recently released, researchers disclosed that the “food web” in tropical rainforests has been cut back by a factor of 60. The rainforests are also suffering increased temperatures of between 2.0o to 2.5o C over baseline numbers, already well above the Paris Climate Accords “hope” of holding global warming to only 1.5o C. Core results of this study were just published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences in the article entitled, “Climate-Driven Declines in Arthropod Abundance Restructure a Rainforest Food Web”. The Food Web destruction and the high temperatures say the rainforest ecosystems are already in the first stages of complete disintegration.
Other examples the scientists have cited as they declare the urgency of their actions include that the Vavilov Ice Cap, a 700 square mile ice field in the Russian High Arctic is now sliding by 15 to 35 feet per day versus a historic value of 2 inches per day. Near the South Pole, the East Antarctica Totten Glacier, with 16 feet of water embedded, is breaking down over 100 years faster than previous climate estimates had made. And the Amazon Rainforest has been struck with three 100-year droughts on now a five-year cycle. The first of those hit in 2005, the next in 2010 and the one after that in 2015. Based on projections, the pace of climate change could cause another one to happen as early in 2019.
Other examples include a 40% slowdown in flow of the Colorado River Basin after the worst drought in 1200 years, the death of underwater kelp forests along the California coast and offshore Australia, diminished ocean plankton production by 40% over the last fifty years – cutting oxygen production in the oceans, and as much as half Australia’s Great Barrier Reef killed by excessive heat in 2016 and 2017.
Those signing the agreement include well-known academics like Professor Danny Dorling of University of Oxford and Dr. Ian Gibson, former chair of Parliamentary Science and Technology Select Committee and Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, and former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, and Andrew Simms of the New Weather Institute, and widely published environmental journalist George Monbiot.
The group has called for an alert of global “climate emergency” and civil disobedience across the world until the world’s governments take notice and start doing something major about climate change.