by Maria Lee, retired teacher, climate activist and Climate Fresk facilitator
Maria’s Mad Response (so far!) to the Climate Crisis
My actions so far have been wide-ranging as you will see…….
Moved my bank account and all my savings (one ISA), to Triodos online bank - fortunately you can still use a chequebook. If you need to feel cheered, have a look at their website – so good to know it’s not only fossil fuels they don’t fund, but arms too.
Got arrested 5 times: once for blocking Horseguards Parade behind 10 Downing St with Extinction Rebellion; once with the “Bare the Truth” action, padlocked by the neck, not-quite-bare, to Parliament railings; and 3 times with Insulate Britain for sitting on M25 sliproads.
We can get a glimpse of the extent to which the Government and judiciary gag truth-tellers from the following:
"An environmental activist [Insulate Britain activist David Nixon] has been jailed for eight weeks after disobeying a judge’s instruction not to mention the climate crisis as his motivation during his trial for taking part in a road-blocking protest.”
The Guardian 7 February 2023
Wrote to the King. Why not?
King Charles will be giving the King’s Speech at the State Opening of Parliament on Tuesday 7th November. He will say that our government will exploit our extensive remaining fossil fuel resources in the North Sea. “Yes, great,” says Maria, “Let’s speed up that Antarctic eastern ice-sheet’s melting time; after all, it will only raise global sea levels by between 2 and 5 metres."
In case you’ll be amused by such a vain attempt at affecting the status quo, or alternatively, would like to send a similar letter, my letter follows (I was advised not to email but write to Buckingham Palace instead).
I have always been grateful to you for your outspoken interest in the natural world.
Now I understand that the King's Speech will contain support for recent/new fossil fuel licences.
As someone who cares about the loss of life from climate change, morally, of course, you have no option but to refuse to read the script.
The alternative would be to call a press conference after the speech and say:
"In my speech, the statements about fossil fuels are the most irresponsible ever written by a UK Government.
Antarctica's eastern icesheet is melting irreversibly which will lead to a global sea-level rise of more than 2 metres, and 5 metres if governments like ours don't change their policies.
All the world's major coastal cities from New York to Mumbai, - and London to follow - will have to be evacuated, permanently.
Our government’s financial choices are not made in a vacuum; they affect the whole globe."