Open Letter: Stop attempts to criminalise nonviolent climate protest
NB: This letter is no longer open for signatures. If you are an IPCC author and would like to sign it, please email

As academics researching climate and environmental change, we have been encouraged to see increased focus on climate in politics and society in recent years. Considering the current trajectory of planetary change, such attention is welcome, even though action is still lacking. We know that our research alone was not enough for this recent awakening to climate breakdown as an existential crisis for humanity, and recognise that protest movements around the world have raised the alarm.
Protestors have been successful in getting the public, the media, and policymakers to pay attention to climate change. They have identified and sought to delegitimise actors (industrial, financial and political) that are responsible for driving greenhouse gas emissions and ecosystem destruction. Through non-violent civil disobedience, activists, from the Student Strikes, Sunrise Movement, Extinction Rebellion, and many other groups, such as indigenous water and earth protectors, have convinced cities and countries around the world to declare climate emergencies, halted polluting infrastructures and created political momentum for transformative change, such as the Green New Deal.

But around the world today, those who put their voices and bodies on the line to raise the alarm are being threatened and silenced by the very countries they seek to protect. We are gravely concerned about the increasing criminalisation and targeting of climate protestors around the world.

Beyond the draconian Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill that seeks to criminalise nonviolent protest in the United Kingdom, worrying developments elsewhere include new laws in multiple US states that threaten nonviolent protestors with lengthy prison sentences, a new Terror Law proposed in the Philippines which would threaten climate activists, laws against protestors in France, the arrest and imprisonment of climate strikers such as Disha Ravi in India, and fossil fuel corporations directly targeting environmental rights lawyer Steve Donziger in the United States, Andy Gheorghiu in Canada and many others globally.
This is of course in addition to the already dangerous situation of many environmental activists and indigenous earth defenders, especially in the Global South.
With the upcoming Conference of the Parties of the UN Climate Change Convention (COP26) in Glasgow, and the urgency for global action accelerating as global warming already reaches 1.2°C, 2021 is a critical year for climate governance. It has become abundantly clear that governments don’t act on climate without pressure from civil society: threatening and silencing activists thus seems to be a new form of anti-democratic refusal to act on climate.
We, the undersigned, therefore urge all governments, courts and legislative bodies around the world to halt and reverse attempts to criminalise nonviolent climate protest.

Professor Julia Steinberger, Universities of Lausanne & Leeds
Dr Oscar Berglund, University of Bristol
Dr Charlie Gardner, University of Kent
Distinguished Professor Michael Mann, Penn State University
Professor Piers Foster, University of Leeds
Dr Anna Pirani, International Centre for Theoretical Physics
Professor Felix Creutzig, Berlin Institute of Technology
Dr Leah Goldfarb, Universite Paris Saclay
Dr Yamina Saheb, Lausanne University
Professor Tommy Wiedmann, UNSW Sydney Professor Dan Lunt, University of Bristol
Dr Céline Guivarch, Ecole de Ponts ParisTech
Professor Catherine Mitchell University of Exeter
Prof. Dr. Olaf Eisen, Alfred Wegener Institute & University of Bremen
Professor Dana Fisher, University of Maryland
Dr Peter Gleick, Pacific Institute
Professor Stefan Rahmstorf, University of Potsdam
Professor Wim Thiery, Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Dr Jess Britton, University of Exeter
Dr Katharine Wilkinson, The All We Can Save Project
Professor Richard Pancost, University of Bristol
Professor John Marsham University of Leeds
Prof Dr Claire Dupont, Ghent University
Professor Paul Valdes, University of Bristol
Dr Sarah Mander, University of Manchester
Dr Heather Price, North Seattle College
Professor Chris Rapley, University College London
Professor Edward Maibach, George Mason University
Professor Wouter Poortinga, Cardiff University
Dr Kirsten Hall, Harvard & Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Prof Dr Peter Knippertz, Karlsruhe Institute of Technology
Dr Romina Martin, Stockholm Resilience Centre
Professor David Schlosberg, University of Sydney
Professor Bob Smith, University of Kent
Prof. dr. Thomas Block, Ghent University
Professor Patrick Belmont, Utah State University
Professor Anne Tallontire, University of Leeds
Professor Callum Roberts, University of Exeter
Professor Valérie D'Acremont, University of Lausanne
Professor James Bullock, U.K. Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Professor Andrew Challinor,The University of Leeds
Professor Chris Taylor, UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Professor Martin Todd, University of Sussex
Professor Alan Blyth, University of Leeds
Emeritus Professor Christine Willmore, University of Bristol
Professor Rachel Aldred, University of Westminster
Professor Susan Page, University of Leicester
Professor Iain Stewart, University of Plymouth
Professor Iain Fraser, University of Kent
Prof. Dr. Michael Getzner, Vienna Univ of Technology
Professor Steve Depoe, University of Cincinnati
Professor Philip Pogge von Strandmann, UCL
Professor Matthew Cotton, Teeside University
Professor Anthony Burke, UNSW
Professor Olaf Corry, University of Leeds
Professor Rosa Galvez, Université Laval
Professor Nathan Phillips, Boston University
Professor Dargan M. W. Frierson, University of Washington
Professor Jem Bendell, University of Cumbria
Professor Karen Holl, University of California, Santa Cruz
Dr Peter Kalmus, NASA
Dr Dann Mitchell, University of Bristol
Dr James Dyke, University of Exeter
Dr Michael Soreghan, University of Oklahoma
Dr Stuart Capstick, Cardiff University
Dr Paul Glantz, Stockholm University
Dr Erik Pihl, Future Earth Secretariat
Dr Diana Ivanova, University of Leeds
Dr Ola Kalén, Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute
Dr Sarah Klain, Utah State University
Prof. Dr. Thomas Pleil, Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences
Professor Eric Herring, University of Bristol
Professor Nick Cowern, Newcastle University
Professor Colin Davis, University of Bristol
Professor Barry McMullin, Dublin City University
Professor Sandy Tubeuf, Université catholique de Louvain
Professor Ruth Muñoz, Universidad Nacional de General Sarmiento
Professor Paul Kleiman, Middlesex University & Rose Bruford College
Professor Stef Craps, Ghent University
Professor Deborah Morrison, University of Oregon
Professor Myriam Dumortier, Ghent University
Prof. Dr. Christel Stalpaert, Ghent University
Professor Katrien Van Poeck, Ghent University & Uppsala University
prof. dr. ir. Patrick Van Damme, Czech University of Life Sciences
Professor John M. McArthur, University College London
Professor Lieven Bervoets, University of Antwerp
Professor Henrik Lagerlund, Stockholm University
Professor Tom Corby, University of the Arts London
Professor Adam Thorpe, University of the Arts London
Professor Michele Carducci, University of Salento
Emerita Distinguished Professor Stella Capek, Hendrix College
Professor Andrew Jorgenson, Boston College
Professor Dustin Mulvaney, San José State University
Professor Elizabeth Pickard, Portland State University
Professor Emeritus Andrew Szasz, University of California, Santa Cruz
Professor Eric Beinhocker, University of Oxford
Professor Ilona Otto, University of Graz
Professor Jago Dodson, RMIT University
Professor Phaedra C. Pezzullo, University of Colorado Boulder
Professor Stacy D VanDeveer, Univ of Massachusetts Boston
Professor Timmons Roberts, Brown University
Dr Scott Archer-Nicholls, University of Cambridge
Dr Aaron Thierry, Cardiff University
Dr Yung En Chee, University of Melbourne
Dr Stella Nyambura, LOABOWA
Dr Steven Earl Salmony, AWAREness Campaign on the Human Population
Dr Alexandra Morel, University of Dundee
Dr Maria Johansson, Researchers Desk
Dr Graham Mann, University of Leeds
Dr Graeme Hayes, Aston University
Dr Anais Tilquin, ETH Zurich
Dr Benjamin Bowman, Manchester Metropolitan University
Dr Salvatore Paolo De Rosa, Lund University
Dr Pauline von Hellermann, Goldsmiths University
Dr Petra Verdonk, Amsterdam UMC-VU University
Dr Hugo Reinert, University of Oslo
Dr Alice Moncaster, Open University
Dr Declan Finney, Ronin Institute for Independent Scholarship
Dr Thomas Smith, Masaryk University
Dr Cameron Brick, University of Amsterdam
Dr Rama Mohana Turaga, IIM Ahmedabad, India
Dr Lucie Middlemiss, University of Leeds
Dr Duncan McLaren, Lancaster University
Dr Peter-Paul Pichler, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research
Dr Sabaheta Ramcilovik-Suominen, Natural Resources Institute Finland
Dr Niheer Dasandi, University of Birmingham
Dr Jordan Chetcuti, Trinity College Dublin
Dr Tristram Wyatt, University of Oxford
Dr Jessika Richter, Lund University
Dr James Graham, University of East Anglia
Dr Jonas Van der Slycken, Ghent University
Dr Ignas Heitkönig, Wageningen University
Dr Robert Watt, University of Manchester
Dr Fernando Racimo, University of Copenhagen
Dr Sarah Greene, University of Birmingham
Dr Richard Sherley, University of Exeter
Dr Jessica Mitchell University of Leeds
Dr Mary Menton University of Sussex
Dr Matthias Schmelzer, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena
Dr Kriti Mukherjee, University of Northern British Columbia
Dr Stuart Campbell, University of Sheffield
Dr Markus Adloff, University of Birmingham
Dr M. Cristina Caimotto, University of Turin
Dr Ethemcan Turhan, University of Groningen
Dr Tim Hewlett, Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile
Dr Katharine Orchel, University of Exeter
Dr Tom Barker, CAT, Wales
Dr Orla Kelly, University College Dublin
Dr Lina Brand Correa, University of Leeds
Dr Sara Vicca, University of Antwerp
Dr Natalie Lord, University of Bristol
Dr Andreas Heinemeyer, University of York
Dr Valeria Scagliotti, King's College London
Dr Ursula Balderson, University of Leeds
Dr Alex Giurca, University of Freiburg, Germany
Dr Aaron Sparks, Elon University
Dr Alison Green, Scientists Warning Foundation
Dr Franziska Elmer, School for field studies
Dr Andrew Ringsmuth, University of Graz
Dr Jasper Kenter, University of York
Dr David Crookall, Université Côte d'Azur & International Ocean-Climate School
Dr Aneeque Javaid, MCC Berlin
Dr Leo van Kampenhout, Utrecht University
Dr Mark Harrison, University of Exeter & Leicester
Dr Richard Lane, University of Sussex
Dr Ersilia Verlinghieri, University of Oxford and University of Westminster
Dr Juan Pablo Orjuela, University of Oxford
Dr Rolando Rodríguez-Muñoz, University of Exeter
Dr Graziano Ceddia, University of Bern
Dr Fergus Green, Utrecht University
Dr Nick Royle, University of Exeter
Dr Isabelle Letellier, Stockholm University
Dr Maria Rovisco, University of Leeds
Dr Kelly McKinney, John Abbott College
Dr Benjamin Allen, Emmanuel College, Boston MA
Dr Anne Winther, Centre for Human Ecology
Dr Federica Ricci, Università di Bologna
Dr Michel Tsamados, University College London
Dr Judith Dellheim, Rosa Luxemburg Foundation
Dr Paola Sakai, University of Leeds
Dr Guy Pe'er, UFZ - Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Reasearch
Dr Viktoria Spaiser, University of Leeds
Dr Hanne Cottyn, University of York
Dr Christian März, University of Leeds
Dr Jim McQuaid, University of Leeds
Dr Charikleia Oikonomou, University of Lisbon
Dr Brian Jones, University of Hong Kong
Dr Laura Kehoe, University of Oxford
Dr Melanie Bergmann, Alfred Wegener Institute Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research
Dr Kerry Burton, University of Exeter
Dr Richard A. Davis, Wesley House, Cambridge
Dr Alister Scott, The One Leadership Project
Dr Alex Krause, University College London
Dr Christoph D D Rupprecht, Ehime University
Dr Carlie Trott, University of Cincinnati
Dr Chris Duckworth, University of Southampton
Dr Andrew Biro, Acadia University
Dr Jerome Hilaire, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research
Dr Heather Alberro, Nottingham Trent University
Dr Johannes Gütschow, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research
Assoc. Prof. Johannes Schmidt, University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna
Dr Peter Doran, Lecturer in law and sustainability, Queens University Belfast
Dr George Adamson, King’s College London
Dr Julia Leventon, Czech Academy of Science, Institute of global change research,
Dr Minna Kanerva, University of Bremen
Dan Phillips, Royal College of Art
Dr George Adamson, King’s College London
Dr Germán Gonzalez Davila, Interdisciplinary Centre on Biodiversity and Environment
Dr Rachel Killean Queen’s University Belfast
Dr Andrew L. Fanning, University of Leeds
Dr Joanna Boehnert, Loughborough University
Dr Jacquelyn Gill, University of Maine
Dr Andrew Jackson, University College Dublin
Dr Kristian Steensen Nielsen, University of Cambridge
Dr José Cerca, Norwegian University of Science and Technology
Dr James Porter, King’s College London
Dr Hugo Almeida, NOVA University of Lisbon
Dr Anthony Delcambre, Faculté de médecine de Lille
Dipl.-Geogr. Harald Sterly, University of Vienna
Dr Daniele Visioni, Cornell University
Dr Johannes Többen, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research
Dr Elena Popa, Utrecht University
Dr Matt Lae, Bath Spa University
Dr Jessica Hope, University of St Andrews
Ian Christie, University of Surrey
Dr Heather Shearer, Griffith University
Dr Emmylou Rahtz, University of Exeter
Dr Hikmet Kuran, Cappadocia University
Dr Brigitte Portner, University of Bern
Dr Alison Blyth, Curtin University
Dr Paul Young, Lancaster University
Assistant Professor Marlyne Sahakian, University of Geneva
Dr Aet Annist, University of Tartu & Tallinn University
Dr Disa Sauter, University of Amsterdam
Dr Maximilian Spiegelberg, FEAST
Dr Leo van Kampenhout, Utrecht University
Dr Jevgeniy Bluwstein, University of Fribourg
Dr Halvor Dannevig, Western Norway Research Institute
Dr Miles Thompson, UWE Bristol
Dr Jane Fisher, Centre for Alternative Technology
Dr Aurianne Stroude, National University of Ireland, Galway
Dr Abel Gustafson, University of Cincinnati
Dr Miriam Meissner, Maastricht University
Dr Alejandro Dussailant, Middlesex University
Dr Christina Kwauk, Monitoring and Evaluation of Climate Change Education Project
Dr Chiara Certomà, University of Turin
Dr Alex Thornton, University of Exeter
Dr Emma Tebbs, King's College London
Dr Jef Peeters, KU Leuven
Dr Ann-Kristin Koehler, University of Leeds
Dr Leif Dahlberg, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm
Dr Andrea Brock, University of Sussex
Dr Harold Heorton, University College London
Dr Caroline Greiser, Stockholm University
Dr Malin Beckman, Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences
Dr Ailish Graham, University of Leeds
Dr Aisling Dolan, University of Leeds
Dr Cat Scott, University of Leeds
Dr Charles Simpson, British Antarctic Survey
Dr Chris Smith, University of Leeds
Dr Elena Bersacola, University of Exeter
Dr ir Tom Cox, University of Antwerp
Dr Jamie Shutler, University of Exeter
Dr Jeannette Eggers, Swedish University of Agricultural Science
Dr Jessica Baker, University of Leeds
Dr Julien Lefèvre, CIRED Paris
Dr Katy Roelich, University of Leeds
Dr Kirsty Pringle, University of Leeds
Dr Magnuz Engardt, Environment and Health Administration
Dr Miriam Huitric, Stockholm University
Dr Rachel Turner, University of Exeter
Dr Rod Everett, Food Futures
Dr Sam Hardy, University of Leeds
Dr Sarah Chapman, University of Leeds
Dr Stefan Gaarsmand Jacobsen, Roskilde University
Dr Atanu Bhattacharya, JIS University
Dr Jennifer Hinton, Stockholm University
Dr Emma Garnett, University of Cambridge
Dr Alexander Vorbrugg, University of Bern
Dr Astrid Oberborbeck Andersen, Aalborg University
Dr Brandon Kuczenski, University of California, Santa Barbara
Dr Ekaterina Chertkovskaya, Lund University
Dr Eric T. Hoddy, Lund University
Dr Jens Friis Lund, University of Copenhagen
Dr Juan Pablo Orjuela, University of Oxford
Dr Julia Crook, University of Leeds
Dr Julia Tindall, University of Leeds
Dr Lauren C. Heberle, University of Louisville
Dr Leif Denby, University of Leeds
Dr Michael Mascarenhas, University of California, Berkeley
Dr Natasha Hurley-Walker, Curtin University
Dr Noel Healy, Salem State University
Dr Samuel Hayes, University College Cork
Dr Todd Mason La Porte, George Mason University
Dr Vivien Fisch-Romito, CIRED
Dr Adam Henne, Genesee Country Museum
Dr Daniel Walls, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Dr Diane Sicotte, Drexel University
Dr Erik Johnson, Washington State University
Dr Geoffrey Supran, Harvard University
Dr Jenan Kharbush, University of Michigan
Dr Justin Mog, University of Louisville
Dr Kimberly L. Barrett, Eastern Michigan University
Dr Mila Turner, Florida A&M University
Dr Peter Gleick, Pacific Institute
Dr Reinhard Steurer, BOKU Vienna
Dr Robyn Smyth, Bard College
Dr Sarah Romano, Lesley University
Dr Seth Tuler, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Thomas Nicholas, Columbia University
Nick Fitzpatrick, Nova University Lisbon
BSc. Melissa Jimenez Gomez Tagle, Technische Universität München, Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí
Tunc Ali Kütükcüoglu, University of Corsica
Peter Knapp, Imperial College London
Sam Betts-Davies, University of Leeds
Jake Wilkinson, Cardiff University
Angela Helen Martin, University of Agder
Ellen Cliff, University of Oxford
Richard Massy, University of Exeter
Jane May Morrison, University of Exeter
Calum Harvey-Scholes, University of Exeter
Yannick Oswald, University of Leeds
Shari Mang, University of Exeter
Heinz Wittenbrink, FH Joanneum University of Applied Sciences Graz
Simon Pirani,University of Durham
Hugh White, University of Exeter
Ewoud Vandepitte, University of Antwerp
Jen Clements, University of Exeter
Paul R Price, Dublin City University
Gert De Keersmaeker, Ghent University
Jim Galloway, University of Exeter
Andrea Rochner, University of Exeter
Andrew Hamilton, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Meenakshi Chabba, Florida Internatonal University
Shane Loeffler, University of Minnesota
Andrea Bacilieri, University of Oxford
David Barns, University of Leeds
Jef Teugels, University of Bolton
Jamie Wilson, University of Leeds
Kyle Topfer, Technische Universität Dresden
Tom Wood, University of Leeds
Tabea Waltenberg, Bonn Science Shop
Gwili Gibbon, University of Kent
Vincent Theobald-Vega, Northumbria University
Kate Lock, University of Leeds
Graham Wood, Permaculture Association (GB)
Steve Harry, King's College London
Steve Marquis, Permaculture Association Britain
Karen Simpson, University of the West of England
Caroline Hickman, University of Bath
Louis O'Neill, University of Exeter, Macquarie University
Furat Jamal, University of Al_Qasem
Steven Harry, King's College London
Thierry Fabrice Pignolet, Université Libre de Bruxelles & Universidad de Antioquia Colombia
David Jácome-Polit, Universidad de las Américas, Ecuador
Nina White, Cardiff university
Jenna Tipaldo, City University of New York
Aminu Lawal, University of Bristol
Jefim Vogel, University of Leeds
Zakia Soomauroo, Berlin Institute of Technology
Marta Baltruszewicz, University of Leeds
Beth Stratford, University of Leeds
Andrew Simms, University of Sussex
Hannah Fitchett, University of St Andrews
Diego Macall, University of Saskatchewan
Martin Röck, KU Leuven and Graz University of Technology
Samuel Ward, University of York
Jarmo Kikstra, Imperial College London & International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis
Seb O'Connor, University of Leeds
Marina Requena, Universitat Jaume I
Margot Bannerman, CSM University of the Arts London
Amanda L. Martinek, University of Wisconsin, Madison
Vera Huwe, University of Duisburg-Essen
Stephanie Lam, University of Cincinnati
Emmanuel-Sathya Gray, University of Cincinnati
Irma Emmery, Ghent University
Emma Theobald, University of Exeter
Jennifer Grigg, University of Exeter
Femke Lootens, Ghent University
Eleanor Scopes, University of Exeter
Duncan Lindo, Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB)
Basia Cieszewska, University of Exeter
Taís González, Université Libre de Bruxelles
Julia Kukulies, University of Gothenburg
Kevin Van Sundert, University of Antwerp
Amethyst Johnson, University of Leeds
Anya Schlich-Davies, University of Leeds
Boris van Meurs, Radboud University
Catrin Norris, University of Exeter
Connor Clayton, University of Leeds
David Unland, University of Bremen
Emily Vosper, University of Bristol
Ian Sullivan, University of Leeds
Karin gerhardt, Swedish university of Agricultural Sciences
Klaudia Jedyka, University of Manchester
Lennart Winkeler, University of Bremen
Maarten Deleye, Uppsala University
Martin Benson, Stony Brook University
Maximilian Tschol, University of Aberdeen
Mélanie Quennoz, Agroscope, Switzerland
Niclas Hällström, Uppsala University
Stephen Denison, University of Leeds
Thomas Pownall, University of Exeter
Trystan Surawy-Stepney, University of Leeds
Xuemei Wang, University of Leeds
Anne Barber, University of Leeds
Rachel Sansom, University of Leeds
Athanasios Nenes, École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne
Craig Harris, Michigan State University
Debra Rowe, Oakland Community College
Frederic Traylor, Rutgers University
Halliki Kreinin, Institute for Ecological Economics, WU Vienna
Ines Wolf, TU Berlin
James M. Joyce, University of Louisville
James R. Stone, Mt San Antonio College
Joris Bücker, University of Oxford
Justin Szasz, University of Oregon
Nicole Lambrou, UCLA
Patricia Earl, University of West London
Patrick Coatar Peter, Boston College
Rachel Whitbeck, Rhein-Waal University
Satu Helenius, University of Eastern Finland
Simone Domingue, University of Colorado Boulder
Sol Agin, Karlstad University
Sophie Gill, University of Oxford
Stacy Philpott, University of California, Santa Cruz

Sign in to Google to save your progress. Learn more
Full name including academic title *
Affiliation *
Position *
Email *
Clear form
Never submit passwords through Google Forms.
This form was created inside of Google Workspace for UoB Alumni. Report Abuse