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Climate activists to stop Vienna traffic every morning for weeks

The Local Austria
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Climate activists to stop Vienna traffic every morning for weeks
The Last Generation group protests walking on Vienna's Ringstrasse (photo: Letzte Generation Österreich)

Austria's capital Vienna will see "at least" three weeks of climate protests by the environmental protest group Last Generation. Here's what you need to know.

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Last Generation activists plan to disrupt early morning traffic at critical points in Vienna, starting on Tuesday, for at least three weeks in their third wave of action. The group has announced that this will be their most significant action to date.

Typically, the blockades involve protesters sticking themselves to roads in order to create disruption to traffic. The core group has approximately 200 people who have undergone relevant training in how to attach themselves to the road.

However, on Tuesday morning, the protest was contained to a march around the Ringstrasse in the first district of Vienna, with activists walking accompanied by police. They carried signs with messages such as "100km/h is enough," "no new drilling," and "Parents for the future."

On a Twitter post showing the action in the Viennese streets, the group wrote: "We have no choice: the government is putting our public safety at risk. Spain and regions worldwide are drying up. Food prices will go up. A social collapse will be the result. And the simplest immediate measures have still not been implemented."

Last Generation has been blocking early morning traffic in Austrian cities for months to draw attention to the climate crisis’s consequences and urge government officials to take action. The group is calling for a ban on new oil and gas drilling and a 100 km/h speed limit on highways, among other demands.

READ ALSO: Is Austria doing enough to protect children from the climate crisis?

They plan "at least" three weeks of protest in the Austrian capital this time, but the exact time (though marches and blockades usually happen in the early morning) and location are kept secret to avoid previous mobilisation by the police, according to the group.

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Who are the climate protesters?

Last Generation is a climate activist group that sees itself as the last generation with the opportunity to prevent severe consequences of climate change.

They refer to themselves as a "nonviolent resistance movement" and often employ roadblocks that involve members glueing themselves to roads in order to disrupt traffic, a tactic referred to as a "sticky wave" or "Klebe-Welle" - they are known in Austria as the "klimakleber".

READ MORE: Who are the climate protesters disrupting traffic in Vienna – and why?

Their blockades in January led to 52 arrests and over 200 police reports as traffic was disrupted in city centres. Similar protests have occurred in other cities, such as Linz, Klagenfurt, Innsbruck, and Graz, since the beginning of the year.

The group made headlines in November when they threw black liquid on a Klimt painting at the Leopold Museum in Vienna.

 

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