GRANDPARENTS and students were among 18 Just Stop Oil supporters from across Devon standing shoulder to shoulder today, Monday, May 29, in London slow marches.
Amongst them were a grandmother of four from Exeter, a child psychotherapist from Plymouth, and the Exeter University Student Union President, Emma De Saram.
All week teams from the South West have been disrupting key roads in London to demand the UK government end all new oil, gas, and coal developments.
The marches took place while news of record-breaking floods in Italy killed 13, temperatures in Spain broke April records, and Canada experienced the most devastating start to its wildfire season in history.
Just Stop Oil teams from across the country have been marching six days-a-week since April 24.
Ariadne Fox, 73, from Exeter was among those marching.
She said: “I want my grandchildren to know that I tried. I want them and their generation to live a life that is sustainable alongside all living things on earth.
“Taking a risk with Just Stop Oil really frightens me, but the future we face if we don’t get off fossil fuels is the stuff of nightmares. I’d urge everyone to join us in a slow march if they can.”
Also marching was Marilyn Spurr, retired teacher, 75, also from Exeter.
She said: “This week I’ve been slow marching for all children, everywhere. I live near a play park and every day I see these beautiful little beings who have total faith that adults will care for them. How can we let them down?
“Unfortunately, history tells us that only disruption works. I attended a biodiversity march the other week with around 70,000 other people – but it was barely covered in the media.”
Emma de Saram, 22, President of the Student Union, Exeter University said: “I’ve been slow marching because we need to stop all new oil and gas to end the mass suffering resulting from the climate crisis. I don’t want my younger siblings to grow up dealing with droughts, food shortages, and dangerous heat knowing that I could have done more.
“Things are so desperate now. I’d urge everyone not to be a bystander and join Just Stop Oil.”
Also marching were Geraldine James, 59, a child psychotherapist, from Plymouth who said: “We need to change how we live and travel, to build a future where fossil fuel is not dominant and create sustainable communities for all. This is urgent.
“I don’t know if the changes needed will happen, but as I have the privilege of time and energy I want to do what I can. I base my actions on love.”
Since the Just Stop Oil campaign launched on February 14, 2022, there have been more than 2,100 arrests and 138 people have spent time in prison, many without trial.
There are currently two Just Stop Oil supporters serving three-year prison sentences for resisting new oil, gas and coal.
Just Stop Oil will be a slow march at 12 noon every Saturday, at Parliament Square in London until it wins what it says is “a meaningful statement from the government halting new fossil fuel projects in the UK”.