Voluntary Sector: Taking Action ... Climate Rush vs London Mayor Boris Johnson

Protesters: Climate Rush
Target: London Mayor Boris Johnson
Location: Soho Square
Date: 14 July

The lowdown

Women-led eco-activist group Climate Rush staged a cycle ride from Soho Square and blocked traffic with a 'die-in' at the junction of Euston Road and Gordon St. The protesters acted out a coughing dying scene and laid down on the road for a planned 4.33 minutes to mark the 4,327 premature deaths from pollution last year. They stopped traffic for six minutes until police moved them on. More than 200 protesters took part and Green London mayoral candidate Jenny Jones spoke at the event.

Why the protest?

Climate Rush claims air pollution in London is among the worst in Europe. It says clean air in the city would prevent about 4,300 premature deaths each year. Climate Rush says London Mayor Boris Johnson delayed the implementation of a key phase of the existing Low Emission Zone by 15 months to January 2012.

How did Boris Johnson respond?

Johnson did not respond to the protest, but speaking in April this year the Mayor said he delayed the implementation because it would 'clobber London's small businesses, the backbone of the capital's economy, with a bill that in the current economic climate could put many of them out of existence'.

How did the media cover it?

The Guardian and The Ecologist covered the story. The BBC featured the protest on BBC London News and radio coverage included LBC and BBC London.

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