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Byron Shire
January 18, 2022

Graduating students and academics to hit the streets in Brisbane CBD protest tonight

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Hundreds of graduating university students and their teachers will march through the Brisbane CBD in their academic gowns and mortar boards, scrubs and other daily professional attire to demand meaningful action on climate change this evening.

Students take part in an An XR protest earlier this year in the Brisbane CBD. Image: XR

‘I graduate with a double degree from the University of Queensland on the day of the Graduation Climate March, [but] instead of feeling hopeful for my future, I can’t sleep at night,’ graduating student and Extinction Rebellion spokesperson, Emily Jane, said.

‘We’re in the 6th mass extinction. Two hundred species are going extinct every single day. Australia is literally on fire. Livelihoods and communities are being destroyed.

‘People are mobilising because we must demand the government to take action – or there’ll be hell to pay. We’re approaching an irreversible tipping point that will cause climate collapse and we’re running out of time. That’s why I’m marching today.’

Anthropology Researcher, PhD candidate and Extinction Rebellion spokesperson, Élise Papineau, said there was a need to break down the idea that knowledge was confined to institutions such as universities.

‘For all the voices that have been censored, stifled and silenced, we must do better,’ Ms Papineau said.

‘We want to highlight First Nations people, and their forms of knowledge, which we have obscured for far too long.

‘Knowledge should be about the willingness to learn from one another, to question the media and the government, to recognise violence in the systems of power regulating our daily lives, to unlearn toxic behaviours, to grow as critically-minded individuals, and to be actively engaged with the world around us.

‘We’re out here tonight to tell the truth the government is denying.’

XR Demands:

1. CLIMATE ACTION: Zero emissions, drawdown and 100% renewable by 2025

2. PRESERVE BIODIVERSITY: End land clearing and give nature legal rights

3. TELL THE TRUTH: Spread the science on climate change and report all facts honestly

4. DISMANTLE COLONIAL SYSTEMS OF EXPLOITATION: Decolonise and replace oppressive government structures with systems of self-management and true participatory democracy

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  1. It will be pleasing to see grad. students & teachers
    in their academic dress. As well the 4 XR demands
    are sound & way overdue.

  2. Knowledge is not confined to universities, it’s controlled in them. While fires burn, those helping them can’t get home because of your march to act on nothing because your not in power. Democracy is dead in this country. Ms Papineau – go home. And Emily Jane take a sleeping pill. Your on the real world now.

    • Elle
      *You say it is ‘A march to act on nothing’, and that
      ‘Democracy is dead in this country’. The march itself is a form of direct action – a democratic tradition. Democracy is only dead if people choose not to participate.The march would suggest people are participating! And thus that democracy is alive.
      *Climate change is perhaps the most pressing issue in the ‘real world’ – highlighting its importance, through marches and the like, while causing minor inconveniences to some, helps to raise its profile – an important action in a democracy.

  3. Graduates and academics have the ideal forum to address via their research and teaching. Who are they airing the grievance too via a street march ?

  4. As a former university graduate myself, I would like to see less of theatrical stunts, protests and hot air, and roll up your sleeves and come up with alternative manageable practical solutions. Show us that in your 3,4 or more years at University that you actually did learn something for the real world and are not just mouthing the University’s and alma mater mantras.

  5. Good on you graduates. It is high time we got off our collective backsides and had a damn good look at what is happening around us. Governments and big corporations are going all out to silence us. We must not let that happen. We must have and we must protect our right to protest. Many people have their heads in the sand!

  6. Pretty frustrating when our society’s most educated & informed individuals must resort to marching for change because their knowledge & advice is ignored &/or hidden from view by those in power rather that actively sought & followed.

  7. Yawooooo!!!

    Fringe dwellers & ferals, my great big, lovely round, blustering patootootie….

    You know Scott Morrison, You would make a great state Minister for sport.


  8. Yes, Sass. It’s also letting the blame brigade know
    that it’s Not just the unemployed & greenies who
    expect our government & opposition to listen to
    those who pay their wages. Remember them?
    The ones who lost all in the fires & those who
    fought & are fighting the fires while the ‘pollies’
    are on holiday & likely hold shares in Adani
    & the rest of the damaging mob.

  9. You all need to grow up and accept that humanity has had its turn and the ONLY future before us now is extinction. Climate change is the least of our problems with 60% of species already gone, acidifying oceans, atmospheric conditions fast approaching those of 4.3 billion years ago when the planet was unable to support life. It does not take a genius or even an academic to work out we have around 10 years of existence left to us. Bleating on about jobs and the economy just proves you’re an idiot and not fit to survive the coming hell on earth. I’m an environmental scientist with over 30 years experience and I and most others in the field have zero hope for the future of humanity


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