The radical environmental group Adbusters encouraged their followers to release air from the tires of SUVs in an attempt to combat climate change. The activists posted how-to instructions on Twitter calling it "gentle escalation."
The group wrote, "Time to do something about SUVs. They're the 2nd-largest contributor to the increase in global CO2 emissions since 2010, more than aviation. This is a gentle escalation of methods to drive the urgency of this climate crisis home and engender a systemic aversion to SUVs."
"Wedge gravel in the tire valves, leaflet the SUV to let them know the tires are flat and why it was done, and walk away. It’s that simple," the group continued. "If we organize, we can hit enough SUVs in particular neighborhoods to spark reporting and spread the metameme."
The radicals added, "We do this neighbourhood-at-a-time to make the biggest splash. Organize a crew (off of any traceable apps) and make leaflets that lay out the case for climate action. The mission is not to win individual converts at this point, but to engender a systemic aversion to SUVs."
The group claimed that climate change was the "biggest crisis we’ve faced as a species, and we are failing the test at every step."
The posts appeared to be a violation of Twitter’s terms of service. Per the platform’s rules, users "…may not engage in the targeted harassment of someone, or incite other people to do so." According to the platform, "We consider abusive behavior an attempt to harass, intimidate, or silence someone else’s voice."
Even after calling for the vandalism, the radicals claimed they were escalating their "…methods in a non-violent manner to convey the seriousness of this crisis in tangible ways."
"Targeting SUVs is good way to hit the automotive industry where it hurts. SUV sales are playing a massive role in the expansion of the auto industry, both as a percentage of global market share and in total numbers."
The activists then recommended to "Start by targeting wealthy areas – our goal isn’t to disrupt workers – and avoid targeting vehicles with disabled stickers or hangers."
On the landing page for the group’s website, visitors are greeted with a pop-up for "Slap a climate denier week."
According to their website, Adbusters is a "…collective of artists, designers, writers, musicians, poets, punks, philosophers and wild hearts has been smashing ads, fighting corruption and speaking truth to power."
The groups claims their goal is to "...catalyze an all-out Metamemetic Insurrection, a total reinvention of the cultural and political playbook — to discover new ways to live, love and think."
They also claim to have funded and been involved in activist campaigns such as Occupy Wall Street.