Sustainability

Sustainable Marching: Extinction Rebellion

 After attending the Extinction Rebellion march in London last month, and speaking to my friend Poppy about marching in general, I realised there’s quite a gap on the internet for this topic. More specifically, sustainable marching.

Everyone marching for XR was pretty great and I didn’t see damage left behind by that march; this post was actually inspired by Poppy’s tales of the Brexit march. It’s a confusing concept: people passionately marching for the good of others… and littering/damaging the environment as they go?! But it does happen. Of course, any effort to help is brilliant, but the whole event is tarnished a little if people are using plastic signs and littering. I’ll be posting later this week about my experience protesting with XR, but please read on to find out how to carry out a sustainable march…

      1. Signs
Make your own signs using old cardboard and scavenged wood, rather than plastic and treated wood poles. Lots of people buy brand new materials to make their signs which will be used once and then discarded. Have a craft afternoon in stead and make your own from scratch!
      2. Food & Drink
Take your own packed lunch (or however many meals you plan to march for) and a reusable water bottle. Buying lunch covered in plastic from a supermarket when you get there is a big no!
      3. Don’t Litter
I know this sounds silly, but honestly… it wasn’t bad at XR, but Poppy said the Brexit march was tainted due to this. Marching passionately with like-minded people all day and feeling inspired, only for the crowds to disperse and reveal all the rubbish left behind. Take a backpack so you can pick up any rubbish you see/keep your own rubbish safe until you find a bin or recycling bin.
      4. Glitter
Wearing glitter is super popular at this sort of thing – I did it! But I use biodegradable glitter, which isn’t difficult to come by these days. Bare in mind though: make sure it is completely eco-friendly. Many brands market their products as biodegradable, but often all this means is that the plastic will break down into smaller pieces, which in the long term is just as, if not even more harmful. The glitter I use is made out of eucalyptus and leaves only love behind!

      5. Use Public Transport If Possible
As I previously said, any efforts to help are incredible, but they’re even better if your carbon footprint is minimal. If the march is in your home city, try to take public transport or even walk/cycle. I live just over an hour from London on the train, and I loved taking the train to get there. The closer I got to London, the more people began congregating in train carriages and comparing the signs we’d made. It really geared me up for the day and made me feel even more inspired.

Keep on standing up for what you believe in – just do it sustainably! Enjoy yourself, make some friends and encourage people to join you.

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