An Extinction Rebellion Vancouver Island (XRVI) climate change event saw a large crowd occupy the Johnson Street bridge Monday afternoon. A ‘grim reaper’ figure appears at every XRVI protest. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

VIDEO: Johnson Street bridge reopens after climate change protest halts traffic

Only buses, bikes, pedestrians and emergency vehicles allowed through

A climate change activism group brought its ‘global rebellion’ to Victoria Monday afternoon, with protesters blocking traffic on the Johnson Street Bridge for three and a half hours.

Described as a peaceful event, the occupation included songs, speeches and even some tears, with protesters hoping to build on the momentum of last month’s climate strikes.

Extinction Rebellion Vancouver Island (XRVI) says the ‘climate and extinction emergency protest’ is part of a nation-wide #BridgeOut campaign that has had protesters occupy busy bridges in cities across Canada. The campaign also saw protesters take over bridges in Vancouver, Toronto, Edmonton, Montreal and Halifax.

RELATED: VIDEO: Climate protesters shut down bridges in Canadian cities as part of global action

“Shutting down the bridge symbolizes that we are on a bridge to nowhere,” said a statement from Mark Nykanen, an XR spokesperson. “With droughts, deadly heatwaves, and hurricanes wiping out entire islands and cities, nature is sending us a 911 call about the climate emergency. All of us have to be first responders and take action.”

Protesters occupied the bridge from 3:30 p.m. to close to 6 p.m., halting regular traffic and allowing only cyclists, pedestrians, buses and emergency vehicles to pass.

The Victoria Police Department said they are aware of the event and will be providing additional updates on Sunday and Monday through their twitter account @vicpdcanada.

“As always with public demonstrations and protests, our focus will be on ensuring public safety at the event,” said Bowen Osoko, VicPD Spokesperson.

RELATED: Climate activists plan to close Vancouver bridge as part of Canada-wide protest

Premier John Horgan also weighed in late Monday morning. “I don’t believe it’s ever a good idea to frustrate other peoples’ lives to make your point.”

“We’re in the middle of a federal election campaign. There are many issues in the commons, and people want to raise those issues to the top of the debate. There is a federal debate this evening and I’m certain that climate action and climate change will be part of that.”

A press release from the organization says, “we apologize for any hardships that take place, but for decades, governments have failed to act on the climate crisis to protect all of us, leaving citizens with little recourse.”



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

An Extinction Rebellion Vancouver Island (XRVI) climate change event saw a large crowd occupy the Johnson Street bridge Monday afternoon. Only emergency vehicles, cyclists, pedestrians and buses were permitted to pass the bridge. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

An Extinction Rebellion Vancouver Island (XRVI) climate change event saw a large crowd occupy the Johnson Street bridge Monday afternoon. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

An Extinction Rebellion Vancouver Island (XRVI) climate change event saw a large crowd occupy the Johnson Street bridge Monday afternoon. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)

Just Posted

Sex workers face new risks during COVID-19 pandemic

‘Desperation has kicked in’ for vulnerable, undocumented workers unable to access help

Greater Victoria liquor stores see spike in sales amidst COVID-19

Customers are buying go-to products in larger quantities

Victoria fills more than 100 motel rooms with homeless population

Mayor says staffing is the biggest issue impacting opening of Royal Athletic Park

Esquimalt’s Buccaneer Days cancelled due to COVID-19

The pirate-themed fair will take place in 2021

‘Small python’ found in vacant Cook Street apartment

Snake taken to CRD Animal Shelter to be claimed

VIDEO: ‘Used gloves and masks go in the garbage,’ says irked B.C. mayor

Health officials have said single-use gloves won’t do much to curb the spread of COVID-19

Unclear if Cowichan couple refusing to self-isolate will face penalty

No fines or charges have been laid to date, including Cowichan couple who won’t self isolate

POLL: Will you be able to make your rent or mortgage payment this month?

With the COVID-19 delivering a devastating blow to the global economy, and… Continue reading

COVID-19: Postponed surgeries will be done, B.C. health minister says

Contract with private surgical clinic to help clear backlog

Black Press Media ad sparks discussion about value of community newspapers

White Rock resident hopes front-page note shines light on revenue loss during COVID-19 crisis

Nanaimo man arrested after allegedly setting house fire

Firefighters arrived to find mobile home ablaze on Barnes Road in Cedar on Thursday

Businesses advised to prepare for federal, B.C. COVID-19 assistance

Canada Revenue Agency portal expected to open next week

Dogs are property, not kids, B.C. judge tells former couple

Court decision made on competing lawsuits over Zeus and Aurora — a pit bull and pit bull cross

B.C. senior gives blood for 200th time, has ‘saved’ 600 lives

There was no cutting of cake for Harvey Rempel but he’s challenging youth to start donating blood

Most Read