Climate Rush: Suffragette centenary at Parliament Square 13 Oct 2008

October 12, 2008 at 10:04 am | Posted in Climate change, Environment, Global warming | 3 Comments
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Climate Rush Parliament Square London 13 October 2008

Climate Rush Parliament Square London 13 October 2008

The Suffragettes 100 Years on

At 5:30pm on Monday 13 October 2008, in Parliament Square, London, hundreds of women will mark the centenary of the Suffragette Rush by holding the Climate Rush.

In keeping with the spirit of the Suffragette Rush, the young women organisers invite men and women alike to stand together with three key demands:

  • No airport expansion
  • No dirty coal-fired power stations
  • The creation of cross-party policy in line with the most recent climate science and research
  • A women-led rally, to which men are invited, is being held in Parliament Square to mark the centenary of the Suffragette Rush.

    The Climate Rush will attract hundreds of women concerned by the inadequacy of political inaction over the dangers of climate change. They will arrive in Parliament Square at 5.30pm on Monday 13th October, exactly one hundred years after over 40 Suffragettes were arrested for their attempt to enter The Houses of Parliament.

    Participants are encouraged to wear period dress and will be given, on arrival, red sashes (in reference to the Suffragettes’ purple sashes) with ‘Climate Code Red’ emblazoned across them.

    Amongst the speakers will be Rosie Boycott, the leader of the Green Party Caroline Lucas and the HACAN President, Baroness Jenny Tonge. For more details check out ClimateRush.

    The plan is to present Gordon Brown with the latest climate research and these three demands:

    1. No airport expansion.
    2. No dirty coal fired power stations.
    3. Cross-party policy in line with the most recent climate research and science.

    Personally, I would rephrase points 2 and 3 to read something like:
    2. No new coal-fired power stations without CCS capability
    3. Government policies for climate, energy and transport must be developed in line with the most up-to-date peer-reviewed climate science and research

    I’d stress CCS because I do think we need to make CCS specific and a condition for permitting new power plant plans.

    I’d call out climate and energy and transport policies specifically because we need to integrate policies that deal with the burning of fuel and associated emissions wherever they occur (no more free rides for aviation) and the demand should join the dots as it calls for government policies to do the same😉

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    1. Thanks to Tim for reminding me to advertise this event, which I hope to attend, though I only have current day and medieval dresses (not entirely appropriate). Hmmm … what to wear?😐

      [Update: Ahhh … I have been advised to dress in modern day white, if I can’t obtain period costume in time. Thanks for your help, B.]

    2. Sylvia Pankhurst was no climate change protestor. She wrote:

      “Socialism means plenty for all. We do not preach a gospel of want and scarcity, but of abundance.

      “Our desire is not to make poor those who to-day are rich, in order to put the poor in the place where the rich now are. Our desire is not to pull down the present rulers to put other rulers in their places.

      “We wish to abolish poverty and to provide abundance for all.

      “We do not call for limitation of births, for penurious thrift, and self-denial. We call for a great production that will supply all, and more than all the people can consume.

      “Such a great production is already possible, with the knowledge already possessed by mankind.

      “To-day production is artificially checked, consumption still more so.”

      Workers’ Dreadnought, 28 July 1923, http://www.marxists.org/archive/pankhurst-sylvia/1923/socialism.htm

    3. Thanks for your comment, James. I agree with you: Sylvia Pankhurst was no climate change protestor. Climate change was not a concern in her day. However, Sylvia’s mother, Emmeline Pankhurst, inspired others to stand up and fight for political change a hundred years ago. The suffragettes inspire women today to stand together and draw attention to the need for political change on topics that concern our generation. Instead of fighting for the right to votes for women, Climate Rush puts climate change in the political spotlight.


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