CLIMATE change protesters from local Extinction Rebellion groups have staged an eye-catching protest in Abergavenny ahead of this week's General Election.

Several campaigners posed as candidates, sporting rosettes saying "business as usual" and wore buckets on their heads - suggesting politicians were burying their heads in the sand rather than addressing fears over climate change.

"There are many important things at stake in this election, but the climate emergency is by far the most significant for the future of our community, our species and our planet," said protester Richard Stephens, from Osbaston. "While we are on the cusp of irretrievable catastrophe, our government, media, and those with huge economic power have largely avoided acknowledging or acting to deal with this climate emergency.”

Extinction Rebellion members gave out 'climate reality check' leaflets to passers-by in Abergavenny town centre, outlining the various Monmouth constituency candidates' thoughts on climate change, and their respective parties' manifesto pledges.


Another protester, Patrick Hannay from Abergavenny, said: “The issue of Brexit or Remain or virtually any other policy issue pales into insignificance when put alongside the challenge of facing up to the massive action needed to address the climate and ecological crisis."

And Elizabeth Jones, who recently moved to Wyesham in Monmouth, said climate change would have local consequences.

“I came to this Extinction Rebellion climate protest because tackling the climate emergency is my number one concern in this election," she said.

"If the next MP for Monmouth and the new government don’t act now to really tackle climate breakdown then we’ll face devastating flooding in Monmouth.

"We’ll have robbed our grandchildren of secure and happy futures as they have to deal with the consequences of climate breakdown today’s voters will have left them with.”

Climate change and how to tackle it has been a theme of the run-up to the General Election, and all parties have made commitments and spending pledges of various types and amounts, in connection with it.

The candidates who are contesting the Monmouth constituency are: Ian Chandler (Green Party); David Davies (Conservative); Martyn Ford (Independent); Hugh Kocan (Plaid Cymru); Yvonne Murphy (Labour); Alison Willott (Liberal Democrat).