A vicar has been arrested over his involvement in climate protests ahead of Extinction Rebellion’s September Uprising.
Rev Steven Nunn, a 55-year-old Anglican priest, was arrested in his home and charged with conspiracy to cause criminal damage.
He was arrested along with four others following climate actions across the country in the lead-up to the September Uprising, which will see high level disruption take place in London, Manchester and Cardiff.
Rev Nunn is part of Christian Climate Action (CCA), the Christian wing of Extinction Rebellion.
The father-of-four said he had no regrets about his involvement and that he was prepared to go to prison.
“I think now is the time for a much more radical approach. Whether that be legal, whether that be illegal. Whether that involves going to prison or whether it doesn’t,” he said.
“Something needs to happen so that people will stand up and listen.”
He and the other arrested protesters have been put on remand until their plea hearings at the end of September.
CCA has joined Extinction Rebellion protesters for banner drops at motorways, as well as protests at banks, the Shell headquarters, and airports, including Gatwick and Stansted.
Rev Helen Burnett, who was at the Gatwick protest, said: “The aviation industry has such a huge impact on this climate crisis – and it’s not a case of us all being in this together.
“Seventy per cent of UK flights are taken by 15 per cent of individuals. It is a case of a privileged and powerful minority disregarding how their actions will impact children and the poorest communities around the world – while the poorest half of the world is only responsible for 10 per cent of emissions.
“Why is destructive behaviour being rewarded with airmiles, airport expansion and tax-free aviation fuel?
“With the memory of clear skies still with us, we could create the change needed to reduce the impact of the airline business both locally and globally and push forward to a green new deal.”
CCA members will be taking part in the Extinction Rebellion protests in September, participating in road blocks and other disruptive actions, while also organising an environmental eucharist service and a stations of the cross.
An opening ceremony was planned for St Johns Church, Waterloo, at 7pm on the August Bank Holiday, marking the start of a weeklong 24/7 vigil during which Christians will join in round-the-clock prayerful protest.
The former Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, is among those who will attend the vigil during the week.
Paul Kunert, a father-of-three from Kent, said he was prepared to risk arrest.
”I’ve never been arrested before, but I see no other way to get government to take this seriously. We’re sleep-walking into a global-heating catastrophe. We need to change now, before it’s too late,” he said.