Socialist Worker

Activists target a museum over links with Shell

Climate fighters protested at London’s Science Museum last week. Meanwhile the Tories are failing to act on climate change, reports Sophie Squire

Issue No. 2760

More than 30 cops threatened to arrest activists and scientists

More than 30 cops threatened to arrest activists and scientists (Pic: Twitter/ @ukscn_london)

Young climate activists ­protested at the Science Museum in London last weekend over its shameful links to oil giant Shell.

Members of the London branch of the UK Student Climate Network (UKSCN) say that the collaboration is blatant “greenwashing”.

Greenwashing is a term used to describe corporations that use phony sustainability promises to cover up their climate crimes.

Shell partnered with the museum to fund its “Your Future Planet” exhibition. The exhibition will show off new climate ­technologies like carbon capture.

When UKSCN entered the museum to try and occupy it for a night they were met by over 30 police officers and threatened with arrest.

The group also draped a banner reading “Drop Shell Sponsorship” from one of the museum’s balconies.


UKSCN tweeted on Saturday, “The Science Museum would rather have kids arrested than drop their polluting sponsors, but we will not be silenced. The police protect fossil fuel interest. We know exactly what side they are on.”

The group was not intimidated by the police presence and returned to protest at the museum last Sunday.

The museum is already under fire for its partnership with BP and Norwegian energy company Equinor.

While activists raged against the Science Museum, the Tories ­maintained their inaction—despite having making noises about fighting climate change.

Boris Johnson confidently stated at the G7 summit earlier this month that £500 million would go into the “Blue Planet Fund”.

According to the prime ­minister the fund would aim to support developing countries to protect their marine environment.

Cities have no plans to deal with climate crisis
Cities have no plans to deal with climate crisis
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But this fund is not new. In fact, it was proposed in 2019 as part of the Tory party manifesto.

For all of Johnson’s insistence that Britain is leading the fight against the climate crisis, the ­government are failing.

One climate group has revealed that Britain is actually less prepared to tackle the climate crisis than it was five years ago.

The independent Climate Change Committee (CCC) found that the risks posed by climate change are not being properly prepared for by the government.

Professor Julia King is the chair of the CCC’s adaptation committee.

She said, “The overall level of risk facing the UK has increased over the last five years and adaptation is not keeping pace with the rate at which the climate is changing.”

The 1,500-page report finds that Tories have failed to arrange ­protection for flooding and adverse weather.

It’s no surprise that the Tories are all talk and no action on tackling climate change. But the growing chaos cannot be left to worsen.

The mobilisations around the COP26 international climate talks in Glasgow in November must be built as big as possible to put pressure on world leaders to act.

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