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COP26 Barefoot Protest Finishes As Glasgow Climate Conference Ends

Port Chalmers woman, Nicola Chapman, finishes her barefoot COP26 protest on Friday as the climate conference ends in Glasgow.

"It has been an unexpectedly powerful experience. I was so heartened by others who did the same, including my husband who attended business meetings in bare feet, and the support from people in all sorts of places, like hospitals, churches, cafes, shops and businesses. Just feeling the connection to the earth (and the pavement) helped to keep me more honest and more aware of my impact upon the planet. Going barefoot slowed me down to appreciate our beautiful world.

"I don't know if it made any difference in Glasgow. But I think everyone is needed in the changes we all must make. This was just one of my ways to contribute. I wanted to let the decision makers know ordinary people, not just those already suffering from climate chaos, care about these issues. We will make the changes we need to make for our children's sake. For the sake of others' children. For other species.

"I did see this as a kind of performance art, and many did tell me what this embodied symbolism meant to them. It was about walking lightly, about reframing the carbon footprint, about walking together, and about how short yet precious life is - like footprints in the sand. A good friend, too ill to get out of bed, said she was supporting me because she had bare feet under the blankets. We all have bare feet underneath."

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