Break Free, The Greatest Civil Disobedience Protest Ever

Once again, the media ignored grassroots actions, as people took up the cause of climate change for 12 days around the world.

From May 3-15, demonstrations proceeded in 13 countries against fossil fuels under the ‘Break Free‘ banner.

30,000 activists took to the streets, occupied coal mines, blocked oil train lines, paddled in kayaks and held community meetings. The message: transition fast from fossil fuels and build the economy we know is possible – centered on 100% renewable energy.

“Every new ton of coal that is dug up is one too many. We are hitting the emergency brakes now. We won’t leave climate action to governments and corporations any longer. We are taking matters into our own hands,” Hannah Eichberger of the German group Ende Gelände (Here And No Further), told The Guardian.

Examples of Actions:

In the US, 2000 activists occupied train tracks for three days in the Northwest, preventing oil trains from moving. In the east, they blocked oil trains and oil barges on the Hudson River. In Colorado and Utah, activists disrupted auctions of public lands to fossil drillers, while others occupied a proposed fracking site near Denver. 1300 people marched in Washington DC, urging President Obama to end offshore drilling, while 1500 protested expansion of BP’s Whiting refinery near Chicago.

In Canada, people on land and water blocked Kinder Morgan’s tar sands hub in Vancouver.

Coal mines and coal plants were shut down in Germany, the UK, Turkey and Brazil, and 10,000 people in the Philippines marched against 28 proposed coal plants. Indonesia digs up and exports more coal than any other country on Earth. In Indonesia, 3000 people sent an ear-splitting whistle message outside the president’s office calling for an end to coal. In Australia, 2000 activists prevented coal shipments by shutting down the largest coal port in the world for a day.

The UK’s largest coal mine had to shut down for a day:


In Ecuador, an oil refinery was blocked to stop oil exploration in Yasuni National Park. At the same time, in Nigeria, protesters marched along the coast where Exxon wants to drill.

Protests in South Africa:

“For years [decades] people have patiently and gently tried to nudge us on to a new path for dealing with our climate and energy troubles – we’ve had international conferences and countless symposia and lots and lots and lots of websites. And it’s sort of worked – the world met in Paris last December and announced it would like to hold temperature increases to 1.5C or less. Celebration ensued. But what also ensued was February, when the planet’s temperature first broke through that 1.5C barrier. And as people looked past the rhetoric, they saw the promises made in Paris would add up to a world 3.5C warmer – an impossible world. The world we’re starting to see take shape around us. So there’s a need to push harder,” says Bill McKibben.

In April, thousands participated in Democracy Awakening in Washington DC and 120,000 at Nuit Debout (Rise Up At Night) in Europe.

All this without a murmer from our Trump-obsessed media.

A new film, Disobedience, is about the global movement to break free from fossil fuels. Watch it:

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