Extinction Rebellion: Protesters target 13 London businesses and BEIS building following COP27

The City of London Police said five arrests were made in respect of the protest activity today.
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Extinction Rebellion and other climate activist groups have targeted 13 central London businesses and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) building following COP27.

The eco group said fake oil was splattered over offices and front steps and handprints of fake blood and oil were left on buildings believed to have links to the fossil fuel industry on Monday morning.

Performers from Ocean Rebellion outside Defra offices. Credit: Ocean RebellionPerformers from Ocean Rebellion outside Defra offices. Credit: Ocean Rebellion
Performers from Ocean Rebellion outside Defra offices. Credit: Ocean Rebellion

Protests took place at BP, Hill+Knowlton Strategies, BAE Systems, Church House, Ineos, Eversheds Sutherland, Schlumberger, the International Maritime Organisation, the Institute of Economic Affairs, JP Morgan, Arch Insurance, the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

Police were rapidly deployed to the locations and 15 arrests were made.

The actions follow the conclusion of COP27 in Egypt, which was widely criticised for the heavy presence of representatives of oil and gas companies.

Extinction Rebellion spokesperson, Sarah Hart, said: “Behind incomprehensible government decisions to double down on fossil fuel development, sign off new oil exploration licenses and allow the big energy companies to rake in record profits, lies a network of companies and organisations that are profiting from this destructive path.

“While the rest of us worry about the cost of turning the heating on our government is prioritising the profits of the very companies that are jeopardising our climate and environment. But everyday people are way ahead of politicians.

“They want to be able to heat their homes and they want a future for their children.

“So today, Extinction Rebellion are sending the message that it’s time to cut the ties with fossil fuels or lose the social license to operate in the UK.”

Performers from Ocean Rebellion  wearing ‘fish heads’ and pinstripe suits lit a fire and stood in pools of blood, dead fish and entrails outside the front entrance of the UK Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) building.

While Doctors for XR glued themselves to the windows at the London HQ of JP Morgan and pasted images to the front facade of the building depicting scenes of climate breakdown.

Christian Climate Action also took action outside Church House in Westminster to highlight the Church of England’s failing strategy to stay invested in fossil fuels and influence the industry as shareholders.

A spokesperson for Christian Climate Action, said: “The Church should be showing moral leadership in rejecting profiting from investments in companies that continue to fuel climate suffering.”

The Met police made 15 arrests, which included:

  • Two people who were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage at a building in Hans Crescent, Knightsbridge.
  • Two people who were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage, one person was arrested on conspiracy to commit criminal damage and one person was arrested for going equipped to cause criminal damage at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in Victoria Street.
  • Five people who were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage and one for assault at a building in Clerkenwell Green, Islington;
  • One person who was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage at a building in Lord North Street, Westminster.
  • Two people who were arrested on suspicion of criminal damage at a building in St James Square, Westminster.
  • One person who was arrested on suspicion of criminal damage at a building in Buckingham Gate, Westminster.
  • A further three activists were arrested in the City of London for committing similar offences.