Extinction Rebellion Los Angeles (XRLA) is a cell in the international Extinction Rebellion organism which made its debut in London in October of 2018 after being incubated for nearly two years by Rising UP!, a direct action non-violent activist incubator. As of May Day 2019 there are nearly 400 cells on five continents — an incredible spread of a social movement by any metric.
Extinction Rebellion Los Angeles began in January of 2019 and since our recent genesis we have worked in active support of our local Youth Climate Strike group, SunriseLA (two youth climate activist organizations) and StandLA (a longstanding effort to end neighborhood oil extraction in L.A.), amongst others. We have published the first edition of our newspaper, The Rebellion Recorder, a real live newsprint broadsheet with exclusives by Bill McKibben and Peter Kalmus. We took control of the Universal Studios globe in order to demand Hollywood not continue wasteful and carbon polluting business as usual and that it use its worldwide influence to alert people to the dangers of global warming as an urgent crisis. This action was picked up by news outlets worldwide and can be seen on our website xrla.org.
XRLA has as its goals the overarching goals of the international movement but with a Los Angeles focus. This can be distilled to:
We in XRLA aim to jolt 3.5% of Angelenos out of their ordinary lives to actively join us in demanding realistic and timely global warming action by our governments to stave off the worst effects of global warming that climate science tells us are coming, soon. We will do this by acts of non-violent civil disobedience, negotiation, education, and the supporting of and working with existing local groups working at the intersections of ecological and climate justice, social justice, and any other local group who sees our current climate reality for what it is — an existential threat to life on earth as we have come to know it. We are a wake up call to L.A. planning to motivate 142,000 people into action in the city of L.A. alone!
Our climate situation is dire and with only ten years effectively remaining to maintain a +1.5oC average increase over preindustrial historical mean atmospheric temperatures we are running out of time. The dissembling of industry, government, and advocacy groups that has led us to this dire place will not stand. Extinction Rebellion is a people’s movement and will not be co- opted. Our continued survival on earth demands we succeed, the consequences of failure are not acceptable.
Join us! For the future; for your future, your children's future, the earth's future. You get the idea...
XRLA intends to spark and sustain a spirit of collective, creative rebellion which will enable much-needed changes in our political, economic, and social landscape. XRLA works with and beside cells in other U.S. cities and seeks to change the national consciousness to become one based on conservation of our ecosystems. XRLA believes in fostering cooperation within our citizenry to quickly reach the goal of living sustainably within our natural environment as a part of it, not apart from it. We work to transform our society into one that is compassionate, inclusive, kind, sustainable, equitable, and interpersonally connected. Additionally we endeavor to mobilize and train local organizers in LA municipalities outside of the City of LA to work with their local communities to develop, using the XR framework, tools they need to address Los Angeles' deeply rooted problems as they relate to the threats created by global warming.
XRLA is allied with the broadly scientifically accepted understanding that achieving average global temperatures of greater than or equal to a 1.5°C increase over preindustrial averages will be the cause of severe, adverse, and consequential impacts on life as humanity understands it today1 and that an increase of 2°C or greater will have catastrophic and perhaps existential consequences for the human species and all of the earth's flora and fauna.2 XRLA acknowledges that this is reality; not a myth, a joke, or power grab by nefarious forces, but a dangerous future that we living today and those that might follow us will, without exception, inhabit should we continue with “business as usual”.
Maintaining +1.5°C is our best hope and it will be difficult to achieve — the window to reach this benchmark grows smaller every day. This goal will require sacrifice by every Angeleno. The consequences of failing are real, terrifying, and will mean an end to life on earth as we understand it today.3 XRLA understands that this message is not popular, nor one people wish to hear. It is a message that inspires despair and grief and XRLA maintains a goal of acknowledging this grief and is allied with local organizations able to help Angelenos reconcile this grief and turn it into positive action in the service of the future of our earth and all of its inhabitants. For better or worse we all are living through a moment of consequence like which humankind has never seen before. We must rise to meet it.
XRLA holds dear the tenets of the international XR group1 with a Los Angeles focus. In sum these are that XRLA is an ecological activist group intent on creating a world fit for healthy habitation by generations to come, free of the existential dangers of the consequences of global warming. XRLA's mission to concentrate on what is necessary to achieve this goal is one grounded in focused non-violent activism and civil disobedience in the service of mobilizing a broad coalition of a minimum of 3.5% of Los Angeles' population (355,750 people) ready to be available for regular and repeated actions in the service of achieving XRLA's goals. XRLA is part of a national XR goal of raising 3.5% or more of the U.S. Population (11,497,200 people) to fight to change the inhumanity of today's climate and environment-destroying norms.
That Los Angeles governments from the County to the Municipal level must tell the truth about global warming and the wider ecological emergency we have created without departmental exception. These governments and their departments must reverse policies inconsistent with addressing these issues and work with the media to communicate to citizens the dangers we face and the changes that must be made to mitigate future impacts of global warming on Los Angeles' population and natural environment. Los Angeles' governments and their departments must not be perpetuators of predatory delay.1
That Los Angeles County governments must enact legally-binding policy measures to reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 20252 and to reduce consumer consumption levels and impacts within County and Municipal governments and among all of the citizens of Los Angeles County.
The creation of County and Municipal Citizens' Assemblies legally empowered to oversee the changes required above, as part of creating a democracy fit for the purpose of arresting global warming and empowering citizens over an establishment that has delivered us to this dangerous climate threshold. These Assemblies shall operate from a science and evidence-based position to ensure that Los Angeles is able to meet or exceed its goal of County-wide net zero carbon emissions by 2025.
XRLA requires a just transition that prioritizes Los Angeles' most vulnerable people, indigenous sovereignty, and establishes reparations and remediation, led by and for, Los Angeles' African-Americans, indigenous people, people of color, and poor communities as recompense for their suffering years of structural environmental injustice. XRLA understands that establishing legal rights for ecosystems is a non-negotiable requirement of County and municipal government in order for historically degraded ecosystems to thrive and regenerate in perpetuity. The repair of the effects of historical and continuing ecocide in Los Angeles is absolutely mandatory to prevent the extinction of our human, and all of earth's, species.
Like the international XR group we have ten basic principals from which our actions grow.