Newsletter 2019-06-25

A banner potato-printed with bees, trees, mushrooms, fish, and the Extinction Symbol, with  "Climate Emergency" written in the middle.
A beautiful banner by new XR Oxford affinity group the ‘Potato Printers’ (Warning: some potatoes were harmed in the process)

A heartfelt hello to new and old rebels alike! We hope you’re all basking in the long, post-Solstice days and lovely weather. At the same time, we hold in our minds those around the world for whom this hot period spells danger: from France, where climate protesters were tear-gassed in 33° heat, to Chennai, where the water has nearly run out. A sobering reminder of how important action – and solidarity – is.

For inspiration on working together for action, and a chance to build friendships with other rebels, come to our New Rebels Meeting this Wednesday! And never forget that action really does work in raising public awareness – a recent public survey shows that concern for the environment is at the highest level ever recorded.

Graph of survey results showing "the environment" is one of the three most important issues facing the country, with one peak of nearly 25% for the 2014 winter storms and flooding, and a second peak over 25% following XR's April rebellion.

Coming up

Wednesday 3 July, 7.15pm – New Rebels Meeting

Our next Working Group meetings

Tuesday 9 July, Venue TBC (almost certainly Brookes Headington Campus)
7-8pm – Casual meetup for rebels before the main meeting.
8-9pm – Working Groups meeting.

Wednesday 24 July, 7-9pm, Venue TBC

Upcoming Actions/Event

  • Monday 15 – Friday 19 July – Operation Mushroom large scale regional XR action – more details on XR Oxford’s involvement to come next week!
  • Saturday 13 July, 11am-2pm – Barclays Street Party (Cornmarket) to protest Barclays’ position as major fossil fuel and fracking investor.
  • Sunday 14 July – XR Banbury at People’s Park Centenary Please come say ‘Hi!’ at our stall or volunteer.
  • Monday 15 July, 7.30pm XR Oxford New Members Induction
  • Thursday 18 July, 7.30pm – XR Banbury Information/Induction Session + Action Planning, Quakers Friends Meeting House, Banbury, OX16 0AH
  • Monday 22 July, 6.30pm – Cherwell District Council Meeting, Bodicote House, Banbury, OX15 4AA. Cllr Mark Cherry will be submitting an emergency plan, please come show your support.
  • Friday 26 – Wednesday 31 July – Power Beyond Borders Mass Action Camp (organised by Reclaim the Power). Workshops, trainings, skillshares and talks in a secret South-East location. Also chances for direct action, one for refugees and one against new gas infrastructure. XR Oxford members will be attending, more details next week!
  • Throughout July – Heathrow Expansion Consultation Events – if you can’t make it in person to tell them why this is a terrible idea for the planet, fill in their online consultation
  • Also in July – FREE restorative evenings to help ground and settle the body and mind.

Keep an eye on our Events page or subscribe to it

XR rebels processing around Radcliffe Camera, some with sub-fusc, some with XR flags.

Leading the way for Oxford University

On Wednesday we processed together ahead of Encaenia (the University’s honorary degree ceremony), to ask Oxford Uni: ‘How honorary is gambling with the future of civilisation?’ Given that the University continues to invest in funds linked with fossil fuels at a time when 80% of explored reserves need to stay in the ground, we called on them to:

  • Invest only in funds which exclude the fossil fuel industry
  • Declare a climate emergency
  • Act as role models in tackling this global crisis, both in curricula design and daily life on campus

At a ceremony on the steps of the University’s Clarendon Building, we (as the ‘University of XR’) awarded honorary degrees to David Attenborough, Greta Thunberg, and the many activists in the Global South who fight (and in many cases, have lost their lives) for climate justice. Zuhura, honoring those in the Global South, said:

Right now, people in the Global South are at the forefront of climate and ecological breakdown. But they are fighting back, as they have done for generations. When in Europe we speak out, we can be pretty sure of our physical safety. Sadly, those challenging power in the Global South often cannot be so. This is even more reason to honour them.

Read Oxford Mail’s coverage of our action

Five people sat with a potato-printed banner.
A man and a woman using sewing machines.
Potato printing blocks, with patterns for a bee, tree, mushroom, fish, and the Extinction Symbol.

Welcome to New Affinity Groups!

We’ve been excited to watch a fair few new affinity groups forming recently – from a new West Oxford affinity group (contact Lucy to join) to one for Oxford Uni Staff (contact Emma or Sarah for details), and more elsewhere.

New OX4 group ‘The Potato Printers’ (pictured above) found they share a love of craft and making…so got together this week to make an amazing banner and flags. (Warning: some potatoes were harmed in the process…) If you’re in a new affinity group, why not meet up for an XR ‘making’ session?

Where can I find more information?