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A Greenpeace activist dressed in a polar bear suit holds up a sign advocating the Kyoto Protocol near an entrance to the Forbidden City.

Protests and direct actions

Carbon dioxide, the most significant global warming gas, is odourless, invisible, and an easy thing to ignore as our world heats up to dangerous levels. At Greenpeace, it's part of our job to make the invisible impossible to ignore. Often this means going to the source of the problem - hanging a banner on a coal plant's giant smokestack, for example. Other times, it means reminding decision makers they have a higher responsibility than the corporate bottom line.

(See our Take Action page for how you can help.)

Always we are guided by the principles of non-violence, and our activists have the best possible gear and safety training. We also aren't above using a little humour to get our point across. But as you read about our protests and direct actions, keep in mind that they all depended on individuals, usually just regular people, who made a personal choice to help save their world - even if it meant dressing up like a polar bear!

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Crew of Rainbow Warrior on their way to Iceland

Image | 1 April, 1978 at 1:00

Crew of Rainbow Warrior on their way to Iceland in 1978

Sacred Mountains of the Inca civilisation disappearing

Image | 1 April, 1978 at 1:00

The Qori Kalis Glacier is the largest ice outlet from the Quelccaya Ice Cap which tops the Cordillera Vilcanota in southeast corner of Peru. They are the Sacred Mountains of Inca civilisation. The ice cap itself has shrunk by at least 20 percent...

Crewmember Pete Bouquet paints the Rainbow

Image | 1 January, 1978 at 1:00

Crewmember Pete Bouquet paints the Rainbow Warrior, 1978

Paul Watson and Bob Hunter (right) block

Image | 1 April, 1976 at 1:00

Paul Watson and Bob Hunter (right) block the sealing ship Arctic Endeavour.

Bob Hunter aboard the Phyllis Cormack in

Image | 1 June, 1975 at 1:00

Bob Hunter aboard the Phyllis Cormack in the North Pacific in a campaign against whaling.(1975/76)

Greenpeace vessel Vega boarded by French

Image | 15 August, 1973 at 0:00

Greenpeace vessel Vega boarded by French commandos in Moruroa nuclear test zone. Skipper David McTaggart was hospitalised from his beating by commandos and almost lost the sight in one eye.

Bob Hunter - Voyage Documentation (Vancouver to Amchitka: 1971)

Image | 15 September, 1971 at 0:00

Robert (Bob) Hunter files a report from the Phyllis Cormack in 1971.

Dave Birmingham raises Greenpeace sail on

Image | 1 September, 1971 at 1:00

Dave Birmingham raises Greenpeace sail on Phyllis Cormack.

Crew of PHYLLIS CORMACK

Image | 1 September, 1971 at 1:00

Crew of PHYLLIS CORMACK. 1st Greenpeace trip to Amchitka Island to protest USA nuclear testing

On board the Phyllis Cormack during Greenpeace

Image | 1 September, 1971 at 0:00

On board the Phyllis Cormack during Greenpeace first protest against nuclear testing off coast of Canada.

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