University of Sussex Students' Newspaper

Activists set up climate camp

The Badger

ByThe Badger

May 6, 2011

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Lewes Climate Camp 2011 Photo: Nick Hider

On Friday 22 April, local climate campaigners occupied the abandoned grounds of St. Anne’s school in Lewes.

With the support of 60 campers and numbers peaking to one hundred at times, this initiative brings to view “sustainable living, [offering] a programme of radical education and commitment to undertaking effective non-violent direct action”.
The camp has gathered activists from Birmingham, Bristol, Portsmouth and London.

The premises have been divided into different working and living areas, including toilets and shower facilities.

The campaigners run workshops on how to fight against some businesses, guerrilla gardening and sustainable living.

One campaigner said: “There is a lot of passion in people at the moment and climate change is a very serious issue. We want to bring in as many people as possible to utilise the space.
“These are real climate issues in the area that local people and everyone should be aware of.”

Activists at the camp have not disclosed a list of objectives nor when they will target chosen places, but one campaigner assured that action could take the form of occupying buildings or blockading roads.
He assured, however, that whichever action they decide to take, that it would be peaceful.

Other mentioned targets include a proposed biofuel plant for Shoreham Harbour, an oil drilling operation in a woodland near Chichester, and the Newhaven incinerator.

One Sussex student says: “I think it is wonderful what they are doing. They are using an abandoned school to do something good, I sincerely hope Brighton and Hove locals support this camp because it is fantastic.

“From the workshops on sustainable living to the promotion of local products, the camp is a great beacon of what local people can do for each other. After all these riots against Tesco, this camp highlights what is great about local food-sourcing and the community and why we must resist Tesco and big supermarkets.”

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