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Fresh December 2009

RSU Lobby Parliament over tuition fee hikes

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RSU Join over 50,000 people in opposition to Climate Change at ‘The Wave’.

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n Saturday 5th December, a large group of Roehampton students and staff members, past and present marched through the streets of central London, to pressure the government to take far greater action on climate change. With over 50,000 others from around the country also taking to the streets to participate, The Wave was the UK’s largest ever march against Climate Change. Timed to coincide with the start of the UN’s climate change talks in Copenhagen to aim for a new deal to be made as the Kyoto Protocol gets closer to it’s expiry date. The demonstation was also seen as the last remaining realistic lobby which could influence a fair and fast deal at the Cop 15. The march, usually an annual event known as The National Climate March was this year branded as The Wave and given a dress code where everyone was asked to turn up sporting as much blue clothing. The effect was visible from all angles, with a makeshift sea of blue shirts, placards, banners and ambitious floats making their decent from the American Embassy in Grosvenor Square through to Westminster, where the wave climaxed in a symbolic encircling of the houses of Parliament. RSU Meet Ed Miliband Following the march, we had the opportunity to meet with Ed Miliband, the governments Secretary Of State for Energy and Climate Change at a special Q&A session. Milband said :“I think today has been an absolutely brilliant signal of determination and commitment. My fear over a year ago was ‘are we going to get the popular mobilisation we need? How are we going to get other count on board? Are people really going to step up to the plate on this?’ I don’t say we’re there for Copenhagen at all, but I think there has been a big transformation across the world on this. I will do my damndest to get the best possible agreement we can at

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Copenhagen”. RSU Vice President Communications,Anant Naik had the chance to meet Ed following the session: “It’s always hard to read politicians, but I think Ed was genuinely shaken after today, being in a room full of NGO’s and students must have been daunting, but he wasn’t just telling us what we wanted to hear. He knows that we have the power to lobby him to make changes, he mentioned that about a year ago and we’ve had a few splinter demos such as Kingsnorth and Ratfield since, but today it all came together, peacefully and I really hope he’ll keep that message with him in Copenhagen” The RSU joined a number of other Sea Change: Roehampton Students and students unions in solidarity staff turn out to support The Wave. throughout the march, including Susan Nash, the NUS’s Vice convergence will prove far more effective in showing the elites President Society and Citizenship who said: “The Wave was that we are now becoming impatient with their greenwash. a powerful demonstration of public concern. Students from When the two tripods first went up in the central landmark and across the country demonstrated alongside tens of thousands were then swiftly occupied, Superintendent Julia Pendry could of people to call for immediate action in Copenhagen. Our member’s message was loud and clear. We cannot delay action. only stand by and watch. The unfurling of the Capitalism is Crisis banner in the heart of London sends a clear message to We need a fair deal at Copenhagen.” hundreds of tourists and workers at one of London’s premier attractions. Some of them took the next step and came and Cop Out Camp Out joined us in the camp to see that another world is still possible. Although the The Wave dented the media in terms of coverage, with an inspiring demonstration of people power, cynics would Milliband, Mandelson and Brown really ought to be watching too, as their time is swiftly argue that marches don’t work, that’s why at approximately running down.” 3.30pm the Climate Camp(an environmental activist body) took over Trafalgar Square, another landmark in the city’s heart with a flash mob event known as the ‘Cop Out Camp Out’. Tents and kitchens were set up underneath two tripods upholding a banner reading ‘Nature doesn’t do bailouts’ to give Nelson and the square’s Norwegian tree some company, and they are still there today, as well are the people. Dave Tinham, a research student and lecturer at Roehampton mused on the effectiveness of the days activity “Whilst the Wave may have had the positive effect of reducing vehicle pollution along the route for a few hours, perhaps the decision by Camp for Climate Action to take Trafalgar Square for a 48 hour

Campaigns Pullout: Well Being/S.H.A.G. Week Reviews R.A.G. Week Vote results

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Fresh Newspaper - December 2009