The Prime Minister and Treasurer’s post-budget media spruiking has been interrupted by protesters, who climbed atop trucks parked at major entrances to Parliament House in a bid to call on politicians to declare a climate emergency.
In the wake of Tuesday’s federal budget, protest group Extinction Rebellion attempted to block a number of roads on Wednesday morning. In a post on Facebook, the group said they wanted to “tell the pollies (that) a business-as-usual budget is totally unacceptable.”
Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg were notably absent from the lawn on Wednesday morning, opting instead for live crosses to morning television and radio due to the protests.
“To ensure any chance of a safe future for our children, we need a climate emergency Budget. Not a Budget that is helping to destroy our future,” Extinction Rebellion said on Facebook.
“We need to declare a climate and ecological emergency and move to zero emissions at emergency speed, as science demands. Our government is lagging way behind the Australian public and failing to protect us.
“We demand our government act for the common good rather than the fossil fuel profiteers.”
Protesters went live on various Facebook pages, saying they would spend as much of the day as they could standing on top of the trucks at Parliament’s entrances.
Police are visibly present, with one protester saying officers had “illegally” moved his truck to the side of the road.
Another protester said she had travelled to Canberra from Bega because she “didn’t feel she had any other choice.”
“We’re in a climate emergency, not enough is being done,” she said.
“We are hurtling towards two degrees warmer within a matter of years.
“I can’t stand by and watch business-as-usual. I’m over it. I’ll do whatever I need to do to raise the alarm.
“We need to stand in solidarity against this government that’s screwing us over and aren’t addressing the climate emergency we’re in.”
Two protesters have already been removed from the area by police.
An ACT Policing spokesman said officers were at the scene.
“Two people have been taken into custody, and public access to Parliament House remains open,” the spokesman said.