“Environment” operatives known for committing random acts of vandalism to provide governments with a pretext to introduce climate legislation says its members are not hypocrites for driving fuel-powered cars.
Just Stop Oil has garnered attention in recent months for damaging property, such as smearing cake on the Mona Lisa, and harassing members of society for their cause. The militant ring says it is trying to get the attention of governments who it claims are inactive in changing the climate. Though the group’s members consider themselves victims of government policy, they remain protected by authorities.
On Thursday morning, Just Stop Oil operatives staged a “slow walk” protest on Whitechapel Road in East London, blocking drivers on their way to work. They were escorted by four police vans and nine officers. An angry bystander, unable to contain his frustration, threw an orange at the group, missing them, and shouted at them that they’re “not welcome”. The man was threatened with arrest by police, who scolded him: "They're minding their own business, what harm are they doing to you?"
In other protests, police were seen giving the operatives the thumbs up.
But despite their environmental zealotry, many members of the group continue to drive gas-powered cars instead of electric vehicles, though the group says the fault is not their own.
Dr. Larch Maxey, a “climate scientist” with Just Stop Oil, says they need the vehicles to function.
“We’re all part of the fossil fuel economy—we have to function within that—so we’re just doing our best within that to push for the necessary change,” Maxey told The Telegraph.
Maxey also says there will be no group policy insisting its members use more climate-friendly methods of transportation.
“No, this group is open to everyone, it’s a coalition working with everyone in society with just one demand -- no new licenses [for oil companies],” said Maxey.
He added: “This isn’t about pointing the finger at individuals, it’s about everyone coming together, pulling together, rolling up our sleeves and getting the Government to stop being criminals and start being responsible.
“It’s really important that we don’t shame and blame the victims, we are all victims of this horrendous crime against humanity of fossil fuel production in a climate emergency.”
The Telegraph notes that Just Stop Oil operatives Monday refused to walk half a mile to their next protest and instead chose to take the subway.