Extinction Rebellion

Rebellions of One across Australia highlight the inadequacy of COP26

Rebellions of One across Australia highlight the inadequacy of COP26

By Extinction Rebellion Australia, on 3 November 2021


Lone rebels took part in synchronised actions this week in significant locations across Western Australia, New South Wales and Victoria.

At the climate talks in Glasgow, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has attempted to lay blame on the emissions of the Global South instead of being accountable for Australia's dragging carbon footprint. The bold Rebellion of One actions make it clear that in the eyes of many Australians, COP 26 reveals the utter failure of a flawed political order. Net zero by 2050 and the continued investment in fossil fuels is a death sentence.

The courageous individuals carrying out these Rebellions of One demand that COP26 leaders, including Australia, must act now on the climate and ecological emergency. Anything less than immediate and drastic action is climate denial, ecocide and mass murder.

The actions are to be followed up by a global rebellion against the inadequate United Nations climate talks in Glasgow. COP has not worked 25 times over, it will not work a 26th time.

In NSW, Rebel Larissa Payne scaled a four metre ladder, locked on, and blocked the road to the Sydney Opera House on unceded Gadigal land to protest the catastrophic failure of the Australian Government and world leaders. Larissa delivered a short speech and remained locked-on until she was removed.

Larissa and Brooke

Larissa (Photos Hugo Photography and John Janson-Moore) and Brooke at Bondi Beach.

Larisa, a high school teacher and journalism Masters student said:

"We need systems change, not climate change. The colonial-capitalist system caused the climate crisis and exacerbates it. Scientists leaked part of the IPCC Report which is explicit when it says civilisation will not survive a cooked planet if we don’t abandon the death cult of neoliberal economics.

"We need to make sweeping changes to the nature of economy and the way we share our planet. We must listen to the voices of those already affected, and those who will be disproportionately affected in future, like the Torres Strait 8. We need to reimagine and rebuild a society that is equitable and sustainable, where no one is left behind.

"Our democracy is broken. Australia is a captured state. Both major parties are beholden to the fossil fuel industry and we are out of time to appeal to their good will, if they have any.

"I would rather be writing, raising a child, and existing in peaceful wonder but the government has forced my hand to rebel. The living ecology of this continent is my love and my home. I refuse to sit idle and let the obscene greed of the one per cent of the one per cent result in avoidable mass murder."

Brian, Sam and Danny, Kathy

Brian at the Sydney Opera House, Sam and Danny at Katoomba, Kathy at St Martin's Place

Brian Peck, also taking action outside the Sydney Opera House, said:

"I'm as mad at hell, and I'm not going to take this any more. Politicians must quit pandering to the fossil fuel industry and start caring about people. I'm at the Sydney Opera House to demonstrate to the world that Australian people care about the planet even though our dear leader does not."

Sam and Danny Noonan, a blind married couple, grandparents, and musicians took action at the office of Gareth Ward MP, Liberal Member for Kiama. Danny locked-on to the front door of the office while Sam occupied and blocked the road out in front of the office. Sam was attached to a baby pram and rocked a lifelike baby doll, as a symbol of the Government’s failed duty of care to future generations. Sam and Danny said:

"We are terrified of what the future will bring for our three young grandchildren if this appalling government refuses to act on the climate emergency our whole planet faces. Our world leaders have a duty of care to their citizens, and the citizens also have a moral duty to act."

Trish, Martin, Mary

Trish at Katoomba, Martin at the Hyde Park Barracks, Mary at Parliament House

On the same day, courageous rebels in other NSW locations were taking a stand. We can't overstate the impact of these Rebellions of One — this courage and commitment is desperately needed.

Carmen Stobaus blocking a road during peak traffic

Carmen Stobaus blocking intersection of Barrack St and Murray St during peak traffic (Miles-Tweedie Photography)

There were six successful Rebellions of One in WA; from Boorloo (Perth), to Goomburrup (Bunbury), to Kincinnup (Albany - wonderful demonstrations of the range of the WA movement.

Alan Hayden outside Woodside in Perth

Alan Hayden outside Woodside in Perth, John Vukovich glued on the steps of Bunbury Tower (Goomburrup) and Jennifer Seccull blocking Havelock St, Perth

Julian blocking the road outside the office of Nola Marino MP

Julian blocking the road outside the office of Nola Marino MP (Goomburrup/Bunbury)

Julie Marsh outside the office of Rick Wilson MP

Julie Marsh glued on outside the office of Rick Wilson MP (Kincinnup/Albany)