Momentary Shut Downs | The Story of Eco Protest
AwN | It dawned on me recently that the reason eco-movements tend to fail is attrition. Here we see a group of protestors temporarily shut down a massive strip mining machine. For this no small feet a bunch of them end up in jail, likely get minor citations and slaps on the wrist, and everybody moves on. The machine is not likely to be shut down again for a long while. The program is this, the money interests don't really care about this, it is simply a waiting game when it comes to environmentalists. Environmentalists do not get a big pay day at the end like the coal mining conglomerate. All they have to do is wait a couple hours, days, weeks, or months until their ecological infraction is forgotten and then they go back to work.
I don't mean to demean the protestors but instead point out that this only leads to apathy eventually and when they give up the pressure is off. Every so often a major enough issue comes up that the people keep the pedal to the metal entirely until the problem is made illegal, but this is rare. And in this situation they are protesting in favor of fighting climate change, a very piece of the narrative for half the polliticians. If there was any real concern in the political sphere above and beyond the actual telling of people that they have to consume less, the military, the industry, and the consumer, then they would do so without the need for groups of people getting arrested. But this is part of their narrative, they can use these people as pawns to garner support for their campaigns but don't actually have to do very much at all.
Unless the eco-movement develops its own money interest, its own way to reward the participants of change, then there will be few lasting victories. What we need is a new model for eco-participation in which people are rewarded not just with some ineffable hope that they have helped but real boots on the ground results both personally and spiritually.
Awesome Photos of Garzweiler Mine Protest
"On 15 August 1500 people took part in a daring act of civil disobedience to shut down Europe’s biggest source of CO2 emissions.
This mass action halted production in the Garzweiler lignite mine in Rhineland, Germany and showed that people are no longer prepared to sit back and watch politicians fail to keep fossil fuels in the ground.
In order to keep temperature rises below 2°C we know that 80% of the world’s known fossil fuel reserves are unburnable, yet politicians continue to subsidise and support fossil fuel companies.
We are building power for the climate movement in the lead up to climate negotiations in Paris later this year and beyond to confront politicians and polluters, and accelerate the unstoppable energy transition that is already underway."
"Sunday 16, 8:00AM: Late last night all of the activists were released from police custody and were able to return to camp. Despite spending the day in police busses they were in very high spirits, knowing that they had sent a strong message to politicians and the fossil fuel industry.