Bern, 18 July 2020

“Keep calm and carry on is a thing of the past”: No Going Back to Normal: Extinction Rebellion demands immediate action to mitigate the climate and biodiversity crisis.

“That things are ‘status quo’ is the catastrophe.” - Walter Benjamin, 1937
“Let go of gone things” - Upile Chisala, 2017
“We will not go back to normal, because normal was the problem.” Sentence that activists projected onto the Plaza Italia, Santiago de Chile

Extinction Rebellion activists confront society with the unpleasant reality and demand immediate political action to mitigate the climate and biodiversity crisis.

Approximately 100 activists will occupy a place in Bern on the 18.7.2020. Under the mottos #NoGoingBack - no return to normality - and #ActNow, Extinction Rebellion is demanding that the Swiss Federal council and the Parliament take immediate action against the climate and biodiversity crisis. Across the world, millions of people are lobbying politicians to turn away from destroying the basic foundations of life. As recently demonstrated by the Covid-crisis, determined action can effect far-reaching changes, and the public is prepared to accept drastic measures, as long as they are adequately informed of the gravity of the situation. 2020 is the decisive year in which to make the choices necessary for our survival and mitigate the climate catastrophe and ecosystem collapse. The CO2 content of the atmosphere continues to rise because we are not meeting the commitments of the Paris Agreement, and the dramatic report of the World Biodiversity Council (IPBES) on the global state of animal and plant life is being criminally neglected. Meanwhile, our government is giving 1.9 billion Swiss francs to support climate-damaging aviation and airlines! It is not fulfilling its constitutional duty to protect us; rather, it is actively making things worse, delivering us up like lambs to the slaughter. We must oppose it. That is why Extinction Rebellion has launched the #NoGoingBack campaign worldwide. Over the last few weeks, we have pointed out the need for an immediate transformation of our social system through colourful poster campaigns, silent actions in various Swiss train stations, a peaceful bridge blockade in Zurich and today with a creative Visioning Action in Bern.

On July 18th, we will occupy a square in Bern, firmly but without violence, whilst respecting the health precautions necessary to protect ourselves as well as passers-by. Our activists are a heterogenous crowd: students, doctors, scientists, artists, careworkers, farmers, office workers, parents, children and grandparents, both Swiss and non-Swiss. The creative action, carried out in a peaceful atmosphere, is entitled “Feel the crisis, embrace your emotions, step into action!”

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