Chris Packham joins Extinction Rebellion in Science Museum sponsor protest

Chris Packham joins Extinction Rebellion in Science Museum sponsor protest

Supporters of Extinction Rebellion (XR) were joined by broadcaster and environmental campaigner Chris Packham as they staged a protest at a gallery in the Science Museum in London.

More than 30 people, including scientists, occupied Energy Revolution, the museum’s new climate gallery, on Friday in protest over its sponsorship by Adani, a large coal-producing company.

The firm is also involved in the manufacturing of drones for the Israeli military, XR claimed.

Protesters led by Youth Action for Climate Justice held up a series of banners, including “Teach us the truth” and “Adani kills”, and created a display of black balls symbolising coal.

They said they intended to remain in the museum over the weekend, with the first school visits to the gallery beginning on Monday.

Speaking to the protesters, Packham said: “Science tells us that the fossil fuel industry is responsible for the accelerating destruction of our natural world. The Science Museum is a place to spark imagination, to provide answers but also to encourage us to ask questions.

“The question I’m asking today is a big one, ‘why on earth are we allowing a destructive industry to sponsor an educational exhibition whilst simultaneously setting fire to young peoples futures?’

“This is beyond greenwash – it’s grotesque.”

Dr Aaron Thierry, a scientist who joined the protest, said: “It’s not just Adani’s brand that the science museum is greenwashing, they’re also allowing the oil and gas giants BP and Equinor to sponsor their exhibits, disregarding the fact that these companies continue to expand fossil fuel production against the warnings of climate scientists.

“That an institution like the Science Museum is working with such rogue companies is a disgrace.

“The museum’s management needs to follow the example of Britain’s other leading cultural institutions and drop all ties to the fossil fuel industry.”

A Science Museum spokesperson said: “Climate change is the most urgent challenge facing humanity.

“In recent weeks we’re pleased to have welcomed tens of thousands of visitors to our new gallery on the urgent energy transition the world needs to see, made possible by generous sponsorship from Adani Green Energy, a major renewable energy business.

“During Friday evening there was a peaceful protest by a small group of activists which colleagues responded to with great professionalism.”

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