26th July 2019
Hashtags: #FullFlyoverStory #ClimateBreakdown
- We need to raise the alarm at irresponsible Flyover reporting
- Extreme heat has forced closure on this major route into the city for the 2nd year – media have failed to highlight the link between this and the impacts of human-induced climate change
- XR Chelmsford invite journalists to climate workshop and pledge to ‘Covering Climate Now’ initiative.
Yesterday the BBC released an article  announcing the closure of “one of the busiest junctions in the county” had been closed indefinitely “after a technical fault was discovered during the heatwave.”
This is the second year in a row the Army & Navy flyover has been closed due to summer heatwaves.
In 2018 the BBC reported: “Essex County Council blamed the summer heatwave for the problem, claiming high temperatures caused expansion in the structure as a whole” – missing a key opportunity to help citizens understand the sorts of consequences likely to occur from a warming world. 
Extinction Rebellion Chelmsford said: “When making statements about the flyover forced closure from extreme heat, we hope that City & County Council, as well as journalists, articulate the connection with the climate breakdown. We demand everyone tells the #FullFlyoverStory”
Omissions in detailing the climate occurred even recently after Parliament declared a climate and environmental emergency . This indicates a need for journalists to take it upon themselves to understand the science and why we need to enter emergency messaging mode at every opportunity.
Extinction Rebellion Chelmsford is offering local media a workshop
This can include training about the climate and ecological emergency, and understand how to Tell The Truth about this crisis disrupting the daily lives of ordinary citizens. We’d like to see media outlets pledging to do so through a journalism initiative called Covering Climate Now. 
Other media publications including ITV , Essex Live , Harwich and Manningtree Standard , Southend Echo  all failed to mention the link between heatwaves, climate change and the resulting disruption.
While other global press coverage link climate change to reporting extreme weather reports, the UK has a reputation for being behind the curve.
Lyrics spoken by Greta Thunberg on a track released yesterday with The 1975 speak to this shortcoming in all our communications across society: “Now is not the time for speaking politely or focusing on what we can or cannot say. Now is the time to speak clearly. Either we avoid setting off that irreversible chain reaction beyond human control, or we don’t. Either we choose to go on as a civilisation or we don’t. That is as black or white as it gets. Because there are no grey areas when it comes to survival.” 
Sophia Cheng, 32, Business owner & Birthstriker: “The disruption caused from ignoring the climate and ecological crisis will be far greater than any non-violent action. The climate crisis just got real in Chelmsford. We need to treat it like the emergency it is.”
Sarah Greenfield Clark, 36, Sustainability Advisor & mother, said: “I find it so disappointing that this new report is omitting the whole story. With an abruptly warming planet we will see more weather extremes that will decimate the society we’ve strived so hard to build; none of our transport systems can cope with this heat, food crops and pollinating species are out of sync with the irregular seasons, and our NHS is already overstretched to be able to take on heat-related health needs of the public. We need everyone to act on this climate & ecological crisis now”
Lynne Wye, 43, Local Business Owner & Mother said: “Today we’ve seen just how disruptive this extreme heat is on our lives. The closure of the flyover and restrictions on the trains are just the start of things to come. It’s time the media were responsible enough to tell us the truth of what we’re facing instead of treating it as a some summer fun.”
Jon Fuller, 61, Former Civil Servant said: “A lot of Essex infrastructure is at risk, including the coast to coast railway line at chalkwell and Leigh. We now live in the era of consequences and it will get worse. The need to slash emissions is now desperate.”
Notes to Editors:
Extinction Rebellion’s top-line demands:
- Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.
- The government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.
- The government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.
Read the Extinction Rebellion Handbook: This Is Not A Drill #ThisIsNotADrill
Since launching on 31st October 2018 Extinction Rebellion is now active in 59 Countries with 351 groups across 248 cities around the world. Citizens from all corners have been inspired to rise up to demand emergency climate & ecological action. We are unstoppable.
Our first International Rebellion in April contributed to the huge shift in public opinion with regards to the crisis. 83% of people interviewed agreed that climate change is one of the greatest threats facing humanity. Our movement creates long lasting change with 69% of people wanting urgent political action to tackle climate change and protect the environment.
The UN referenced Extinction Rebellion as positive action against the risk of ‘Climate Aparteid’. We have been praised & supported in all corners of the world, from academia to religious leaders, from environmentalists to entertainers. We are working in solidarity with NGOs: Friends of the Earth
Extinction Rebellion crosses the political divide and helped the UK parliament become the first in the world to declare an “environment and climate emergency” (followed by Ireland, Portugal, France, Canada)