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One of the yachts sprayed with paint by activists in Barcelona on Sunday. Rebelión Científica / EoR
Climate activists spray black paint on mega-yachts in Barcelona harbour
Climate

Climate activists spray black paint on mega-yachts in Barcelona harbour

Youth activists from Rebelión Científica demand an end to fossil fuel subsidies, on Sunday afternoon, in a demonstration on the docks of the Marina Port Vell

Doménico Chiappe

Madrid

Friday, 31 May 2024, 13:40

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Using black spray paint, young activists from two environmental organisations, Rebelión o Extinción (Rebellion or Extinction) and Rebelión Científica (Scientific Rebellion), have defaced the hulls of some large yachts, moored at the docks of the Marina Port Vell, in Barcelona. Just as the painting over works of art in museums, this act, which could be considered vandalism although it does not cause irreparable damage, was done as a protest against climate inaction.

In this case, the organisers oppose "fossil fuel subsidies", which "not only push us into the climate and ecological abyss, but also generate huge inequalities and harmful models such as luxury tourism in the middle of a severe drought for the benefit of a privileged minority". They claim to have used "biodegradable paint".

A spray-scratched mega-yacht in Port Vell.
A spray-scratched mega-yacht in Port Vell. Rebelión Científica / EoR

It happened on Sunday afternoon, and they left their mark on "several mega-yachts", while other activists unfurled banners with slogans such as: "fossil subsidies + luxury tourism = climate crisis + drought".

Why luxury yachts? Because "the richest 1% of the world's richest people still pollute more than the poorest 50%" and "billionaires are primarily responsible for the eco-social crisis". Added to this is the drought and its consequences on the agricultural sector and the price of food and energy, they explained.

Young activists display their banners in Barcelona's marina.
Young activists display their banners in Barcelona's marina. Extinción o Rebelión / RC

Rebelión o Extinción and Rebelión Científica have acted together in other protests, together with other European organisations. Now they are promoting the campaign 'Stop EU Fossil Subsidies', on the eve of the European elections. "States finance polluting fuels, the main driver of climate change," they maintain, and calculate that in 2023 "at least 405.1 billion euros have been allocated in subsidies to the fossil industry in the European Union", in direct and indirect aid, "ten times more than in climate policies".

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