Climate change protesters play dead at Denver city hall in a bid for urgency from City Council

Climate change activists perform a "die-in" during Denver City Council. Aug. 5, 2019. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Climate change activists perform a "die-in" during Denver City Council. Aug. 5, 2019. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

staff photos

Ten people lay sprawled and still in front of Denver City Council members Monday, pretending they were dead. They were very alive and very serious about getting local lawmakers to declare a climate emergency.

“The oceans are rising and so are we,” sang the group, a local chapter of Extinction Rebellion, an international organization, sang after rising from their temporary graves and exiting Council Chambers.

Extinction Rebellion Denver wants to convince local lawmakers to declare a “climate emergency” in Denver. The distinction is symbolic, but only at first. According to organizer Dave Robinson, it’s the first of four goals.

“The first is to tell the truth about the climate emergency,” Robinson said. The first demand is also the easiest one to do because telling the truth is just talk.”

Climate change activists perform a "die-in" during Denver City Council. Aug. 5, 2019. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Climate change activists perform a "die-in" during Denver City Council. Aug. 5, 2019. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Extinction Rebellion’s second goal is to quash the the world’s carbon footprint by 2025. The third is to create a citizen-led assembly to oversee the transition to clean economy, and the fourth, in America, is to prioritize changes in communities of color and indigenous people.

The stunt barely disrupted the council’s regular business. Council members hardly acknowledged them during the protest, though City Councilwoman Robin Kniech referenced the movement in her remarks.

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