Expect traffic delays on Water Street in Kelowna Friday for another climate protest | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Expect traffic delays on Water Street in Kelowna Friday for another climate protest

A protestor at Kelowna's Global Climate Strike rally wore a symbolic mask.
November 27, 2019 - 6:30 PM

Extinction Rebellion will be protesting again Friday in an effort to motivate the City of Kelowna to declare a climate emergency and update its current climate plan.

They are planning to take over Water Street in front of City Hall. They’ve painted a canoe that will block the area, they're bringing a lot of speakers for music, they've planned chants, a marching route and will be packing hot chocolate and coffee.

“Bring a mug, we won't be providing plastic cups," Ana Ciocoiu, one of the members of the local branch of Extinction Rebellion, said.

The protest starts on Friday at 1 p.m. and it goes until 5 p.m.

Kelowna’s current climate plan is “woefully inadequate” and lacks clear deadlines and accountability, she said.

“After September we had a couple of talks with council and they had the same stance on the climate emergency they had a year ago," she said.

The City also gave a "flat out ‘no’ to calling a climate emergency,” she said.

Some 450 municipalities across Canada have declared climate emergencies, including Vancouver, New Westminster, Port Moody and North Vancouver.

Even the Central Okanagan Regional District is currently considering it, though they deferred a declaration this week for further information.

Board member Wayne Carson brought up the issue at the regular meeting in hopes it would create a positive discussion.

"It’s a plea for people to take a look at the situation and recognize the situation we’re in," he said.

With governments failing to act, local Extinction Rebellion members felt compelled to have another protest, which will coincide with "Black Friday" protests in larger urban centres.

“We want to take the nice approach first. The City has to take us seriously. Kelowna is a privileged place,” she said. “We’re lucky to be here in this climate and this environment and we have to stand up and protect it — it won’t last forever if we don’t.”

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