Renovate Switzerland to block major roads and highways in October

Renovate Switzerland to block major roads and highways in October

After a five-month hiatus, the activist organisation Renovate Switzerland has announced that it will resume blocking Swiss motorways and roads in October. The group says it is protesting the lack of action from the government in addressing climate change and the looming energy shortages.

Renovate Switzerland to resume disruption on roads and motorways

In a statement released on September 30, the organisation announced that it would start blocking roads and highways again, starting from October 3. According to Le Matin, they warned that the sit-down protests planned for October will be far larger than the ones held in April, with more volunteers and so more disruption for Swiss drivers.

The movement’s main demand is an extensive renovation plan for the heating of houses and apartments in Switzerland. Specifically, they are calling on the government to train 100.000 people and task them with making all housing in Switzerland better insulated and more energy efficient.

When asked why they were returning now, the group cited the government’s energy-saving plan as the main reason to continue the protests. “With regard to energy savings, [the government] discharges its responsibilities by counting on the small voluntary gestures of the population and businesses,” they noted. They said they would continue to block roads until their demands are heard and given a “substantial response” from the Federal Council.

Where are the Renovate Switzerland protests likely to take place?

While activists have already started blocking motorways - having blocked a road in Lausanne on October 4 - by design, it is difficult to predict where and when they will start to protest. However, the group has announced that it is holding several information and training events for protesters, which provide some insight into where and roughly when disruption will take place:

  • Geneva, every Thursday in October
  • Lausanne, every Thursday in October
  • Biel / Bienne, every Thursday in October
  • Fribourg, October 11, 18 and 25
  • Bern, October 12 and 26
  • Zurich, October 11, 18 and 26

The organisation is likely to target the main thoroughfares in and around Swiss cities, so be sure to tune in to traffic reports to help avoid the major delays expected as a result of the disruption.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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