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Pictures of protest: Highland witness at COP26


By Tom Ramage

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Business management lecturer Dermot Williamson was amongst those who attended COP26 in Glasgow.

He said a clear message had been delivered by campaigners at the United Nations climate change conference.

Getting the message across at COP26
Getting the message across at COP26

“Those marching were vibrant and determined that the world should hear all their urgent demands," he said.

“These included ‘Tell the truth about the climate crisis’ and “Governments, business and we as individuals must act now – it’s too late just to talk blah blah’.

Full swing at Glasgow
Full swing at Glasgow

“There were grannies, children, pushchairs, wheelchairs, friars, Buddhists, dogs, chants, music and banners proclaiming ‘Stop climate crime’, ‘Stop airport expansion’, and ‘There is no planet B...’. The messages never stopped coming.

Delegates were made aware that they will be judged by history and there was to be no “greenwashing” this time, reported climate campaigner Mr Williamson, who saw no trouble at the demonstrations.

Pure and simple
Pure and simple

"There were masses of police from across the UK patrolling COP26. Almost all were very friendly, while wary for any trouble. I did not see any. Glasgow was friendly and welcoming as always.”

But he did describe marchers as being “kettled” by police at one demonstration he attended, saying: “We were surrounded by police who let none in or out of the siege.

Displaced Dora makes her point
Displaced Dora makes her point

“Police confiscated food and water passed from outside to those trapped in the kettle for up to three hours.”

It was in stark contrast to the Green Zone where businesses, academics and others demonstrated what they are doing and what can be done to tackle global warming.

He said: “There, I saw science, education, innovation, indigenous culture, and a children’s choir. I bounced on a bouncy castle enclosed in a bubble of air cleaned by green algae.”

Is that clear enough, politicians?
Is that clear enough, politicians?

Back outside he said there was disgust to see VIP limousines with motorcycle outriders guzzling and emitting carbon.

Mr Williamson added: “We were not surprised to hear Boris Johnson flew back to London by private jet for a reunion party of Daily Telegraph journalists.”

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