Five cycle from Scotland to Paris for the UN climate change summit
They did it the hard way – by bicycle and in winter.
Over 13 days the group, aged 48-73, cycled 1500km to take their message to Paris.
“We ride to the summit to support the negotiators at COP21 and to keep up the pressure on world leaders”.
It’s the time for us to recognise the importance of climate change to our living planet, to people across the world, and our economies. Climate change impacts on national and international poverty and inequality, in ways that affect us all. As individuals we must change our ways, to consume less, to use less energy. Our leaders must lead, by making the right decisions and legislating more forcefully.
The only group cycling all the way from Scotland to Paris, we met up with activists in many places on our way through the north west of England. Cyclists from Stroud and Oxford rode with us to London, where we joined 120 cyclists heading via Brighton and Newhaven to Dieppe, then across northern France.
We rode into Paris in a “bike train” with banners streaming and music blaring, singing for Justice Climatique. The police allowed us to demonstrate peacefully at the major landmarks of this beautiful city.
On 12.12.15 we joined an estimated 15,000 activists at in the Rue de la Grande Armee. On the stroke of 12pm we formed a red line, with rolls of cloth, painted faces, red umbrellas and tulips, symbolising the fact that we have reached the limit on climate change. A two minutes silence followed, in honour of the thousands who have died and will die from the effects of climate change.
Like many, we are happy that an agreement was reached at COP21 but aware that it is very weak, and that we must now make greater efforts to hold our politicians to account. We will use our high profile ride as a means of engaging as many individuals and organisations as possible over the coming months.