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Extinction Rebellion holds funeral procession for wildlife

Climate activists or Extinction Rebellion. Picture by Aurora Imaging.
Climate activists or Extinction Rebellion. Picture by Aurora Imaging.

Extinction Rebellion staged a wildlife funeral procession complete with a low drumroll and a coffin bearing the words Wildlife RIP.

Several of the protestors wore animal face masks and others carried large fake skeletons of species including an orangutan and a rhinoceros for the midday march from the Inverness Town House to Falcon Square.

The activists carry a fake skeleton.

NHS Highland bank nurse Simon MacLardie, an XR member since 2019, said the group wanted to create a piece of street theatre that would make a lasting impact.

He said: “You could see by people’s expressions that they looked quite moved by it. We haven’t changed the world because there’s not that many people in Inverness but it helps us to get our points across, of which there are so many.”

The coffin bearers.

XR members have been drawing attention to rising sea levels this summer.

The climate activists took part in performances including an Edwardian tea party to highlight sea level rise ahead of G7 Summit in June.

The climate crisis is also playing out across domestic politics with Nicola Sturgeon calling on the UK Government to “reassess” oil and gas licences already issued – including the controversial Cambo development near Shetland.

The first minister had previously stopped short of unequivocally opposing the proposed development.

Mr MacLardie said he joined XR because he was concerned that it was a public health issue.

A coffin draped by a skeleton at the Extinction Rebellion rally.

“Climate chaos is going to increase the number of zoonotic diseases, where animals carry harmful germs that can spread to humans, like SARS including Covid and Mers and Ebola, and all these kinds of diseases.

“The more climate chaos there is the more we will see of pandemics s there is definitely a public health issue in the long term.”

Grouse shooting is among the other causes taken up by the XR group, who are calling on landowners to take advantage of tree planting grants that are available.

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