BBC puts Extinction Rebellion co-founder on Woman’s Hour green power list week after Cenotaph stunt
The BBC’s green-themed Woman’s Hour power list includes the co-founder of Extinction Rebellion, a week after the group’s Cenotaph stunt.
Introducing the list, journalist Lucy Siegle acknowledged that the inclusion of activist Gail Bradbrook was "controversial" but said the influence of the organisation was "undeniable".
Her fellow judge Emma Howard Boyd, chair of the Environment Agency, said: "The work of Extinction Rebellion, when it is peaceful and focused, has really made people sit back and think and start to act."
Last week the group staged an Armistice Day protest, leaving a wreath on the Cenotaph war memorial calling for action on climate change, sparking controversy.
Dr Bradbook, a molecular biologist, is a lifelong protester who was inspired by Occupy to co-found the direct action group, which has staged a naked protest in the House of Commons, blocked roads and spray-painted buildings.
She has been arrested multiple times, most recently for criminal damage for smashing a window at the Department for Transport, a charge she denies.
Topped by Green Party MP Caroline Lucas, the list of 30 also includes National Farmers’ Union president Minette Batters, who said she had endeavoured to form partnerships with environmental organisations, in a debate which in the past had been "polarised" and "antagonistic".
Farmers and environmentalists have not always seen eye to eye, with farming groups pushing back against the common view among environmental groups that meat production and consumption should be curtailed, among other issues.
"There are people on that list who maybe in the past we might have been deemed to be in conflict with but I have felt very strongly that actually, we have to collaborate because we all want the same thing," she said.
Ms Batters, the first female president of the NFU, said she hoped her inclusion marked a change in how farming was seen in environmental circles.
"There’s been a need for me to become a campaigner in order to make sure that the voice is being heard, and that the recognition is there that actually, if we’re going to get back to a sustainable way of living, the only way we can do it is through what we eat," she said.