XR: ‘Put the Fire Out!’ Burning Earth open mic for Amazonia

when

15 November 2019
12:00 - 19:00 (UTC +00:00)

where

12 Copthall Avenue, London EC2R 7BN, UK

type

Activity/Event

hosted by

Extinction Rebellion UK

It’s time to bring the heat of the Amazon fires to toxic finance companies. BlackRock are the world’s top investor in deforestation and main beneficiary of the crisis in Amazonia, and one of the biggest global investors in fossil fuels – especially coal, of which they are the top financial backer worldwide. JOIN US for an open-mic, open-stage protest and Burning Earth-themed performances in front of BlackRock’s HQ in the City of London!

PLEASE NOTE: the theme for this action has changed to Burning Earth, as we will be protesting in solidarity with a delegation of Indigenous peoples from Brazil. The Indigenous leaders from APIB (Brazilian Indigenous Peoples’ Delegation) are visiting London and cities all around Europe to demand an end to European complicity in the destruction of Amazonia and the persecution of Indigenous peoples for commodities grown on and extracted from their lands. (Mad max costumes still welcome to vision the blasted desert Earth BlackRock’s fossil fuel investments are driving us towards).

WHEN?
Friday 15th November from 12:00 noon until 7pm

WHERE?
BlackRock head offices, City of London

12 Copthall Avenue, London EC2R 7BN, UK

We will assemble at the pedestrian square in front of the BlackRock head offices, directly opposite Great Swan Avenue by Costa Coffee.

Nearest Underground stations: Moorgate and Bank

WHAT?
To make sure BlackRock reap the destruction they sow, we will bring the chaos and disruption of the Amazon fires to their doorstep in a creative and artistic show of love and rage. We will create a ‘stage’ of wood ash outside BlackRock’s head office in the city of London. We welcome speakers, musicians, dancers, and performers to show the raging fire of our anger and compassion at the destruction of Amazonia’s ecosystems and the persecution of its Indigenous peoples. We invite dancers and performers to body/face-paint with flames, ash, coal, and oil stains and take part in a chaotic dance-off in the pile of ashes. Protesters in Samba bands and cacerolazas will make a roar of noise that is impossible to ignore.

To bring an end to our disruption, BlackRock must bring an end to deforestation – Put the fire out! We demand an end to their investments in deforestation and fossil fuels, and remind everyone of the destruction this causes to Indigenous communities and the environment. Leaflets will detail their ecocidal activities, and how BlackRock employees can disrupt their company’s practices from the inside.

WHO?

We will hold an open mic and stage in front of BlackRock for the people to speak truth to power. We invite speakers from Indigenous communities bear witness to the destruction BlackRock is funding in their communities. We also welcome YOU to the stage and the microphone – musicians, poets, dancers, and performers, as well as speakers, protesters, activists and campaigners from allied groups, such as APIB, Extinction Rebellion, XR Youth, Animal Rebellion, Greenpeace, Stop Ecocide, Parents for Future, Brazilian Women Against Fascism, Amazon Watch, and more.

We are demanding BlackRock meet with us and change their business model – and welcome the voices of those working inside the building too. We will invite BlackRock employees and the senior management to respond outside the building at a microphone attached to a fire extinguisher, on which is written “DECO2LONISE”.

WHY are we protesting?

BlackRock is the world’s largest contributor to the climate crisis and ecological disaster. Money is the oxygen that fuels the fire of global warming, and BlackRock are pouring funding on all the worst players in the game. The company controls nearly $ 7 trillion in investment, representing an economy greater than Japan’s GDP. BlackRock is the largest shadow bank in the world, largely exempt from regulations. They pour hundreds of billions of dollars into such monster corporations as Exxon, RWE, RheinMetall, JBS, Bayer-Monsanto, and Cargill (the world’s largest animal feed retailer). BlackRock and CEO Larry Fink say companies should deal responsibly with environmental disasters and the climate crisis. But at the same time, BlackRock is the biggest financier of this crisis. Instead of fueling the fire, BlackRock could by itself move the world in a new direction by taking the simple, bold step to remove unethical and unstable investments in fossil fuels and deforestation from their portfolio.

BlackRock is the greatest beneficiary of the destruction of the forests in the Amazon, profiting from ecocide, land grabbing and human rights abuses which often result in murders of local and Indigenous people.

Every week there is a new horror story about the state of the rainforest and about murdered indigenous and environmental activists. We raise our voices in rage and solidarity after the attack on Indigenous Forest Guardians in Brazil just two weeks ago, in which Paulo Paulino Guajajara was mudered by illegal logger with a gunshot to the head, and a fellow Forest Guardian was also hospitalised with bullet wounds.

We demonstrate in solidarity with APIB – Articulação dos Povos Indígenas do Brasil, a group of delegates from Brazil currently on a tour of Europe to raise awareness of the destruction and killings in the Amazon. Their slogan is “Indigenous Blood: Not A Single Drop More”.

HOW can you get involved? Here’s a few ways to take part:

– Join us on Friday, November 15 to send a loud and clear message to BlackRock.
– Show the flames of your rage and compassion by performing a dance speech, poem, or other piece in the ashes.
– Bring placards, flags and banners.
– Bring drums, pots, pans and other things to bang on, and get ready to make some noise as part of a Cacerolaza or a Samba band.
– Wear charcoal black, ash grey, fiery orange, and/or blood red clothing.
– Paint your face with orange flames, oil stains, and coal smudges. Use #AmazonFires and #BoycottForAmazonia in your photos.
– Paint your hands red with fake blood, lipstick, sharpie or chalk, symbolising blood in solidarity with Indigenous land defenders. Use #NotASingleDropMore in your photos.

*If you already have a Mad Max costume from the previous action theme visioning a post-apocalyptic future blasted Earth, it’s still welcome – BlackRock are a toxic finance corporation who pour billions into dirty coal and fossil fuels, polluting our future.
**We ask that you stay respectful of other cultures in your costume. Do not use face paint or clothing that is not of your culture, such as Native American headdresses or Indigenous face paint patterns.

WHAT NEXT?

By representing the flames in this fire, we will also acknowledge European complicity in the destruction of Amazonia through lucrative trade deals and the buying commodities from these conflict areas. If BlackRock and other toxic companies profiting from this crisis will not meet with us, then we will increase the pressure, creating economic disruption using direct action, such as subvertisement and brandalising to publicly expose their unethical practices. At the end of the action, multiple groups will come together to publicly announce the #BoycottForAmazonia, initiating consumer boycotts, divestment and sanctions targeting governments and companies complicit in the destruction of Amazonia and the genocide of its Indigenous peoples.
Find out more here:
https://www.facebook.com/events/468657333978361/

We’ll see you on the streets!

https://www.facebook.com/events/2417254421862419/

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