A normal Thursday morning – with John Kerry

A normal Thursday morning – with John Kerry

Date: 12 April 2013

Yesterday morning in central London was a morning like any other. It was a morning of world leaders and business executives developing new ways of destroying our planet for profit. But it was also a morning of an increasingly global protest against greed and environmental destruction.

Basically yesterday morning it all came down to this: The US government is reviewing plans to construct the ‘Keystone XL’ pipeline that will transport monstrous amounts of oil from Canadian tar sands through the US. If this happens, a handful of people will become immensely rich – while thousands will see their homes destroyed and millions if not billions will be affected by the resulting catastrophic climate change.

The tar sands project is the largest industrial project in human history and it has the potential of emitting twice as much CO2 as has been released so far in human history. It is moving beyond breaking records to breaking our planet. In Canada, where the tar sands are extracted, things look even bleaker. Immense areas of land are destroyed, water sources are polluted, and the indigenous population face health risks and displacement.

That is why I, along with nearly 100 other people, braved my way to grey and rainy central London yesterday morning. We came to tell US Secretary of State John Kerry that time is up for wrecking the planet for profit – or time will be up for the climate. And we are not the only people thinking this. Both Kerry and Obama have been met with anti-tar sands protests almost everywhere they’ve been lately. A few days ago, about a thousand people joined a protest in San Francisco. 

Yesterday morning was a morning like any other in London. It showed that if we want to stop environmental destruction we need to continue the protest. In London. In San Francisco. And everywhere else where politicians and bankers alike value profit over people.

The demonstration was organised by the UK Tar Sands Network, and supported by Friends of the Earth International, The Climate and Health Council, People & Planet, World Development Movement, No Tar Sands, 350.org, Healthy Planet UK, Push Europe, UKYCC, and Campaign against Climate Change.