“We’ve got to go!” I’ve heard these words so many times in the past couple of weeks leading up to this second rebellion. And now that the time to go is now, we’re actually getting on the bus that will take us all the way to London, I keep reflecting about the actual meaning of these words. “We’ve got to go!” I feel bound to go, I have a duty to go, and I’d like to explain why.

We are dismayed by the government’s failure to take any meaningful action to tackle the climate emergency, we are grieving at the damage to our planet, our only home, we are angry, even – but our hearts are full of hope and full of love.

This is why we’ve got to go. Love is what is pushing us to do what we are doing. Love for one another, for our friends who are travelling down with us, those we will meet along the way, and those that will join us in London. Love for our beautiful, beautiful earth, so big and yet defenceless, so welcoming and yet so mistreated. Love for all those amazing human beings who have been fighting before us, and those who are yet to join our fight. Love for those who can’t join in our action, but count on us to be successful.

We know that we are privileged, in so many ways. We know that not everyone can afford to travel, not everyone can afford to use their annual leave and miss work for two weeks, not everyone is able to take direct action and risk being arrested. But we are ready to use that privilege, we are ready to run the risk for the truth – not because we’re ‘heroes’, but because it is necessary.

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It’s necessary because there is no more time. No more time for empty promises and green-washed policies aimed at preserving a status quo which is already destroying our planet and causing suffering to millions. No more time for lying to the public and trying to convince them that business as usual is not killing our ecosystems. A million species are now at risk of extinction. As our summers get unbearably hot in the UK, we will face harvest failures leading to food shortages here in the UK in the next few years. There is no more time to delay.

This is why we’ve got to go. This is why in in more than 60 cities from Paris to New York and from Buenos Aires to New Delhi, thousands of ordinary people like me and you will gather together and stand on the street in solidarity with one another, with all the peoples of every country and with all life on Earth.

This is why we are peacefully taking to the streets and disrupting business as usual in the centre of power: Westminster, London. We are duty bound to do this, as nothing else seems to work. Back in April, the International Rebellion had only four roadblock sites, yet they had such an effect that the UK, Scottish and Welsh Governments all declared a Climate Emergency shortly afterwards. For government, that was the easy part, that was just words. Next week, we are peacefully back on the streets because we need meaningful action. This time, we need everyone to be with us. In London this month, there will be twelve large camps blocking every road into Westminster - and there are already ten thousand people joining us from across the UK.

We need policy change and system change. We know that we cannot afford to carry on subsidising exploration for new oil and gas with billions of pounds of taxpayer money - that money needs to be invested in a super quick and just transition to renewable energy by 2025. But so much else needs to change. That is why we are demanding a Citizens Assembly to make the necessary policies to tackle the crisis.

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In our camps on the streets of London we will be creating a version of the society that we want to see. 500 rebels from XR Scotland, XR Cumbria and XR north-east of England will be setting up a fully equipped camp named ‘Power in Truth’, where we will focus and take action on the fossil fuel industry. Our camp will be decorated with trees and allotments and we’ll have workshops and speakers, music, ceilidhs and daily People’s Assemblies to discuss ways through the climate crisis. It’s going to be amazing.

Of course we are also scared. I know I am. I am scared I could get arrested, I’m scared of what could happen next. But I am also tired of being scared. I am tired of living every day with the constant fear that, if we don’t do something, everything will collapse. I am terrified by the indifference, by the constant minimising of the threat. I am frightened by the idea of having to look future generations in the eye and tell them that we could have done something, but didn’t.

This is why we’ve got to go. This is why you’ve got to go, too. Everybody, now.

*Linda Rocchi is a second-year PhD student in Classics and XR volunteer