ABOVE: Activists block a road in Sweden on November 17, 2018.

Almost 1,000 scientists have signed a declaration supporting civil disobedience protests that urge government action on climate change.

“We believe that the continued governmental inaction over the climate and ecological crisis now justifies peaceful and non-violent protest and direct action, even if this goes beyond the bounds of the current law,” Emily Grossman, the first signatory of the declaration and a science broadcaster with a PhD in molecular biology, announced during a protest on Saturday (October 12), according to Reuters. Grossman, accompanied by other signatories, read the declaration outside London’s Science Museum in Kensington. 

“We therefore support those who are rising up peacefully against governments around the world that are failing to act proportionately to the scale of the crisis,” she said. 

See “Scientists to Join Teens in Global Climate Strike


“We can’t allow the role of scientists to be to just write papers and publish them in obscure journals and hope somehow that somebody out there will pay attention,” Julia Steinberger, an ecological economist at the University of Leeds and a lead author of the sixth Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report, tells Reuters.  

“We need to be rethinking the role of the scientist and engage with how social change happens at a massive and urgent scale,” she says. “We can’t allow science as usual.” 

As of Tuesday (October 15), the declaration had 948 signatories.

Ashley Yeager is an associate editor at The Scientist. Email her at ayeager@the-scientist.com.

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