Climate change activists take to the streets of Cork to enforce Pana ban

Climate change activists take to the streets of Cork to enforce Pana ban
Extinction Rebellion (XR) Cork took to Pana during the hours of the ban between 3pm and 6.30pm on Sunday to ensure the street was only used by traffic permitted to use it such as buses and taxis.

Climate change activists in Cork took to the streets on Sunday to ensure the private car ban on Patrick Street was enforced.

Extinction Rebellion (XR) Cork took to Pana during the hours of the ban between 3pm and 6.30pm to ensure the street was only used by traffic permitted to use it such as buses and taxis.

The action coincided with International Car-Free Day, a worldwide event to encourage greener methods of travel.

The group said the action was an “opportunity to celebrate our vibrant city, engage in conversation with the citizens of Cork, inform them about the ongoing climate and ecological crisis and invite them to join Extinction Rebellion in demanding the Irish government take it seriously”.

Extinction Rebellion (XR) members enforcing the Pana ban
Extinction Rebellion (XR) members enforcing the Pana ban

A spokesperson said: “Despite the declaration of a Climate and Biodiversity Emergency, the Irish government has released a climate action plan that falls far short of the radical changes needed to keep global temperature rises below two degrees as envisaged under the Paris Agreement.

“This unambitious plan by the Irish government comes nowhere close to achieving the emissions reductions needed in order to save our children from a devastating future.” 

Extinction Rebellion has called on the government to set a target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and to embrace systemic change in industry, agriculture, electricity, transport and biodiversity.

The group also described the National Climate Action Plan and the Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Strategy (CMATS) as “unambitious”.

XR Cork were joined on Sunday by local councillors including Lorna Bogue, Colette Finn and Oliver Moran, all of the Green Party.

Cllr Moran said that the event illustrated that people “are behind the Pana ban”.

“So far we've heard lots from those who say no.

“What we showed on Sunday is that not only are people behind it, there are people who are willing to put themselves in danger to defend it,” he added.

"We were thanked by taxi drivers, bus drivers and a restaurant came out to give us food.

“The support on passers-by and on social media was great.

“There are naysayers but they are the smallest minority and we should not let them hijack the narrative.

“The future direction of this city must be active and public transport first, clean air and a pleasant city to live and do business in.”

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