Vancouver police made three arrests Saturday as climate change activists took to the streets of Vancouver in a bid to draw attention back to what they say is the greatest crisis of our time.
Members of the group Extinction Rebellion snarled traffic as they dumped fake blood outside the B.C. Supreme Court on Smithe Street.
“We’ve seen the inaction of governments all over the world on climate crisis, and we’ve listened to the science and Indigenous voices, so we’re here to demand action,” demonstrator Kiara Grant told Global News.
“We have to demand action to avoid total catastrophe. It’s already started, and we’re here to just demand action.”
The International Panel on Climate Change has warned that a global increase in temperatures of 2 C over pre-industrial levels will come with rising sea levels, increased droughts, floods and the possible irreversible melting of the West Antarctic ice sheet.
Average global temperatures are currently about 1 C above pre-industrial levels, and could rise to 1.5 C within the next five years, according to the World Meteorological Organization.
Vancouver police said the group of about 50 people occupied the intersection of Hornby and Smithe streets for several hours, at which point the trio were arrested for mischief and intimidation.
Organizers say they’re not afraid to go to extreme measures to get their message across to politicians and the public, calling climate change an emergency.
Extinction Rebellion has become known globally for its disruptive and often theatrical demonstrations.
In October and November of 2019, members were arrested in Vancouver during a blockade of the Burrard Street Bridge and a “funeral procession” through downtown streets, amid a series of protests that ground traffic to a halt.
Mischief charges were stayed earlier this month against a trio of Extinction Rebellion activists who blockaded Premier John Horgan’s home last March.