Climate protesters swarm city centre

first_imgA group of student protesters marched through Oxford streets last Monday, demanding climate action both within the University and throughout the country.Cycling under the joint banners of Climate Rush and OUSU’s Environment and Ethics (E&E) Committee, the students were dressed as suffragettes and chanted “Deeds not words”.The choice of a bike-mounted protest was to criticise the government’s decision in promoting electric cars as a green solution and their proposals for four new coal fired power stations.Jake Colman, a member of the E&E committee, praised the demonstration, saying “Bikes, drumming, chanting and saving the planet – I can’t think of a better way to spend an afternoon!”The protests began in Wellington Square, with the protesters demanding that the Vice-Chancellor employs Sustainability Officer, a position which has been unadvertised for the past six months. They also wanted the University to follow a year-on-year emissions goals in order to meet a 20% reduction by 2020.Julia Koskella, chair of the E&E committee said, “We are asking for concrete, achievable changes in the University and town. The suffragette costumes are drawing a lot of support for our campaign – it’s a positive, engaging stunt.”After riding around the city centre, the Climate Rushers finished on Cornmarket Street to highlight the energy wastage of High Street shops which leave their lights on at night.The protesters had sent letters to each of the shops which had left their wares well-lit the night before. They asked the shop managers to “Switch Off Climate Change”, by saving energy through switching off their lights at closing time.Two shops responded, Pret à Manger and Snappy Snaps, and these were awarded with Certificates of Appreciation. Those shops which did not heed the protester’s requests were given Certificates of Disapproval.Lighting accounts for 20% of the UK’s electrical energy usage. That’sequivalent to 10 coal fired power stations, or about 73 million tonnes of CO2 per year.Lucie Kinchin, a 2nd-year Pembroke student involved in organising the protests, said she was appalled by the actions of shops who had decided not to switch off. “Lighting that advertises products to empty streets at four o’clock in themorning is not only completely unnecessary, but totally irresponsible in theface of catastrophic climate change. These companies need to switch off.”“Since climate change is happening now, positive change musthappen now.”One passer-by commented, “The certificates are a great idea! It’s a really good action, as it’s achievable and fun. Using humiliation and ridicule to get stuff done is very effective.”The University spokesperson commented on the protests, “The University upholds anyone’s right to protest, as long as that protest is carried out peacefully and within the law.”last_img read more


first_imgSinn Féin Justice spokesperson Pádraig Mac Lochlainn has said that the latest report from the Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG) vindicates Sinn Féin’s ongoing publicly aired concerns on the termination of Fixed Charged Notices by senior members of An Garda Síochána and the large percentage of court summons issued that have not served by gardaí.The C&AG’s report reveals that half of all court summons issued for unpaid Fixed Charged Notices were not served by gardaí and that around one in five drivers are getting away with road traffic offences due to procedural failures.Deputy Mac Lochlainn told Donegal Daily: “Last week, I revealed that figures from the Court Service had been brought to my attention, confirming that over 38% of garda summons issued by the courts from January 2009 to December 2012 had not been served. “Out of a total of 1, 688,349 Garda Summons issued, 646,509 were not served. I have since written to the Minister for Justice, Alan Shatter and also sent a parliamentary question seeking urgent clarification.“The findings in the C&AG’s report that half of all court summons issued for unpaid Fixed Charged Notices were not served by gardaí are consistent with the Court Service data I have brought into the public domain. The system in place is not working. It has been clearly open to abuse and has cost the tax payer, millions of euro in unpaid fines.”He continued: “The focus in the report on the termination of Fixed Charged Notices is also very welcome. Last year, two Garda whistle blowers brought this matter into the public domain after having their concerns and questions raised internally within An Garda Síochána, essentially stone walled.“The attempts to discredit these courageous whistle blowers have been once again laid bare by this report and the list of questions for the Garda Commissioner and Minister Alan Shatter grow longer every day. “Sinn Féin will continue to shine a light on all of this until we are assured that the lessons are learned and public confidence is restored.” MacLOCHLAINN: ONE IN FIVE ESCAPE MOTORING OFFENCES was last modified: October 1st, 2013 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Comptroller and Auditor General (C&AG)Deputy Padraig MacLochlainnlast_img read more