Climate crisis protests cause Sydney Harbor Bridge, CBD traffic chaos
Sydney, Australia, Jun 27 (EFE).- A woman locked herself to her car’s steering wheel and paralyzed traffic to the Sydney Harbor Bridge on Monday as part of demonstrations to demand decisive action against the climate crisis.
The 22-year-old protester parked her car across two lanes to block the entrance of the Sydney Harbor Tunnel just after 8.30 am, disrupting traffic to the iconic bridge in Australia’s largest city of 5.3 million residents.
The woman, who identified herself as Mali in a video livestreamed on social media, attached herself to the steering wheel with a bike lock around her neck.
Climate activist group Blockade Australia, which posted the video of the protest on Facebook, said that the protester was from the town of Lismore, some 600 kilometers north of Sydney, which was devastated by flooding in March.
“This is climate change. It is here. It is happening now. It is terrifying what is going on in the world and we have to stand. I cannot stay silent anymore, I cannot be complacent any more,” Mali said inside the car, before she was eventually removed and arrested by police.
The incident took place as a Blockade Australia rally of around 100 people walked through the financial center of the city, blocking roads from 8 am at rush hour to demand urgent measures from the authorities against the climate crisis.
In recent years, Australia has experienced massive forest fires, record temperatures and rainfall, and severe flooding, while the Great Barrier Reef has been suffering its fourth mass bleaching event in seven years, caused by heat stress.
Australia has the worst climate action of all developed countries, according to a report published by the Climate Council, an independent organization of Australian experts, ahead of the UN climate summit (COP 26) in Glasgow in November last year.
The conservative coalition that governed the country from 2014 to May this year was harshly criticized for years of inaction in the face of the crisis.
New prime minister, Labor leader Anthony Albanese, pledged after sweeping the May elections to accelerate Australia’s transition to renewable energy to become carbon neutral by 2050. EFE