A balanced and informative piece on this phenomenon: Disruption can bring social change
A few observations of my own. I found it interesting that some of the protesters criticised organisations like Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth who were pioneers of direct action tactics on environmental issues. Perhaps they have been overtaken by new forms of action.
In terms of tactics, I did find it odd that public transport was targeted as we need to develop that as part of a climate change strategy. Admittedly, they backed away from disrupting the tube, but what is the problem with the Docklands Light Railway?
The activists claim that the UK Government has done nothing, but it was the first country to pass climate change legislation. Real progress has been made on renewables. Much more needs to be done, but action is also required elsewhere, not least in the United States (some hope), India and China.
The protesters say that their policies are achievable, but certainly not by 2025. For a start, just think of the problems in replacing 24m-26m (figures vary) gas central heating boilers.
Even if the Government did want to engage with them, how does one talk to a movement that has no leadership structure?