Words: Muna Lukani and Stephen Murcott Images: Getty Images
You are being called. That anxiety in the back of your mind, that feeling in your very bones is calling you. There is real urgency now as positive reinforcing climate feedback loops start to increase the speed of changes to the Earth system. Governments are doing nothing. Businesses are doing nothing. This isn’t a distant apocalypse. Scientists are telling us that we’re 18 months from a tipping point from which there will be no coming back. It’s not going to happen to somebody else. It’s going to happen to us. We must rebel. In South Africa there is a long tradition of peaceful civil disobedience and Extinction Rebellion Mzansi (XR Mzansi) is such a movement.
Rebellion for life seems an appropriate response to a system that is responsible for global ecocide. The South African chapter of XR was started in October 2018 and began with a strike outside parliament to protest about the seismic testing on the West Coast.XR Mzansi aims to create a movement reflective of South Africans’ struggles and sensibilities. We can’t shy away from the truth of why we find ourselves in this terrible circumstance, and the systematic scope of the problem. The minimum we aim for is the radical reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, coupled with support for the most vulnerable in society, the majority on the planet and in South Africa.