BLOCKED: Extinction Rebellion protesters shut down Brisbane's CBD
BLOCKED: Extinction Rebellion protesters shut down Brisbane's CBD DARREN ENGLAND

CBD climate protests 'like Luther King's civil rights fight'

A STUDENT involved in the Extinction Rebellion rallies that shut down Brisbane streets has compared the group's efforts to those of civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr.

Hundreds of activists from the Extinction Rebellion group have repeatedly blocked peak-hour traffic in the CBD in response to the government's climate change inaction.

Michelle Duncan, a mother of four and former Greens candidate, said similar disruptive but non-violent rallies achieved significant changes in history.

"If people look into it they'd see this has worked before... Martin Luther King, or suffragettes," she said.

"We've seen these huge civil movements across the world.

"They've only succeeded because normal people in society have got involved."

Ms Duncan admits those "normal" people stuck in CBD traffic as a result of the protests were trying to go about their lives.

"Climate change is such a big thing for people to grasp when they're struggling in their own lives to pay bills," she said.

"Nobody feels good about pissing people off, to be blunt about it.

"If they look at the bigger picture, being 10 minutes late to work versus, in 30 years, Brisbane being too hot to be liveable.

"We are so, so quickly running out of time to address it and slow it."


Michelle Duncan - The Greens candidate for Blair.
Michelle Duncan, the Greens candidate for Blair, compares the CBD blockade to civil rights rallies. Contributed

Ms Duncan, who secured 8 per cent of the primary vote in Blair at the May federal election, said business-as-usual lobbying hadn't worked.

"Everything we've tried so far, the government won't listen to," she said.

"The fact Adani continues to get approvals shows the government is not listening to the concerns of voters.

"We have such a huge variety of people who come along to these things, it's not just dole bludgers or hippies."

Queensland Police arrested 72 people on Tuesday when Extinction Rebellion members blocked city streets for its largest demonstration.

Ms Duncan did not attend but has participated in previous rallies.

"We're just fighting four our kids' future," she said.