Activists with the climate action group Extinction Rebellion Quebec (XR) took over a billboard in the Mile End as they seek to ramp up the pressure for more ambitious climate policies. The activists climbed the billboard last night and pasted over what appears to be a Telus advertisement with a poster that reads "ça va bien bruler" ("it's going to burn well"), to draw attention to the historically destructive wildfire season.

"It was done through careful action planning and banner painting. Infiltration, deployment, getting out — all in the night of the 20th. It seems hard, but when you practice it isn't."   

The phrase is a play on "ça va bien aller" (it's going to be okay), which emerged as an expression of solidarity among citizens at the first peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.  

"The time to act is now, and we wanted to make it known," stated XR spokesperson Bianca De Ponte Gallant.

"We have a choice as a society, one between leaving the pandemic worse off than we were or seizing the moment to deal with our layered inequality and ecological crises. We wanted to ask, which will it be?"  

When asked about their goals, another spokesperson Alix Ruhlmann stated, "we practice momentum-driven organizing. We want to build interest and energy to foster non-cooperation with the government."

"This will create pressure to counter the corrupt influence of corporate and oil power in Canada and make way for a societal project."  

XR is urging residents to demand action to tackle the climate crisis. It is asking people to attend a demonstration in Place du Canada on September 26, which will be a day of global climate protests.  

Last year's protest drew hundreds of thousands of demonstrators, including students from all over the city, to the streets of Montreal.  

"The climate crisis is happening because those in power profit from it," stated another XR spokesperson Louis Ramirez.

"Only power building, organizing, and opposition can change this, not technology or luck. This requires all of us. Let's go."

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