Attendees of WOMAD 2019, the UK’s World of Music, Art and Dance Festival, are reporting quite the shocking turn of events: the appearance of a two acre, 300 foot-in-diameter crop circle in a field near the festival grounds in Wiltshire, England.
The symbol, a pointed hourglass enclosed by a circle, is the infamous ‘extinction symbol’ popularized by the Extinction Rebellion, an activist organization with a flair for the dramatic. The group is well known for staging large-scale events that make it hard to keep them out of the headlines. This crop circle is the latest.
“The Extinction Symbol crop circle draws our attention to ecocide, the loss of 75% of insects and catastrophic loss of biodiversity; the overuse of herbicide and pesticide and the havoc climate chaos wreaks on our capacity to grow food. People are already going hungry around the world, even here in the UK, and yet the amount of perfectly good food thrown away every day by our supermarkets is astounding. In the Midwest of the USA, 16 million acres won’t grow wheat this year, due to flooding. This is the reality of our current systems and the Climate and Ecological Crisis we are in. The coming years will see truly cataclysmic changes to our capacity to grow food and that is when we are genuinely looking at societal collapse.”Extinction Rebellion Festivals Coordinator Julian Thompson
This circle is the second massive circle to occur in the UK, but the last one was not made of flattened plants, it was made of people.
The creators of this human symbol are an art collective entitled The Circlemakers, who released the following statement about their demonstration:
“Much of our work is inspired by the ancient sacred sites of Britain and the world – we come together, we work as a team – as they did in the past. No one of us could create what we do entirely on our own. Extinction Rebellion is about making positive change by working together. The Extinction Symbol lends itself perfectly to land art. It is the peace sign of our times. The symbol which is free to use by all (in a non commercial way) signifies the threat of extinction. The circle represents planet Earth and the hourglass within is a warning to us, that time is running out. We are in a Climate and Ecological Emergency. In the making of this crop circle – the largest Extinction Symbol ever made – we were conscious of the huge risk to our fragile planet. The time to act is now.”The Circlemakers
The Extinction Rebellion is quickly growing in numbers and popularity, with their concise demands listed on their website, and scrawled on massive banners at protests. Their demands are:
- “Government must tell the truth by declaring a climate and ecological emergency, working with other institutions to communicate the urgency for change.”
- “Government must act now to halt biodiversity loss and reduce greenhouse gas emissions to net zero by 2025.”
- “Government must create and be led by the decisions of a Citizens’ Assembly on climate and ecological justice.”
More on this movement can be found at Rebellion.Earth