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Make Them Pay

About the Campaign

“Make Them Pay” is an ongoing campaign to denounce and address the outrageous carbon inequality. It brings together citizens and scientists from Extinction Rebellion and Scientist Rebellion. We had two major days of internationally coordinated days action so far, on the 10th of November 2022 and the 14th of February 2023.

We aim to tackle the excessive carbon inequality by amplifying the demands of people and areas who are most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. In doing so, we also look to platform popular policy recommendations from various Citizens’ Assemblies.

In order to limit the worst consequences of climate breakdown, we need, now more than ever, collective action.

Make Them Pay jet Schiphol

On November 10, 2022, more than 190 climate activists and over 120 scientists engaged in nonviolent direct action against private aviation in 11 different countries. Watch the video of our actions below, and join us to fight this excessive carbon inequality and injustice!

Dr. Gianluca Grimalda, social science researcher, among those arrested in Milan, said:

“To avoid climate catastrophe, societies must shift into emergency mode. This includes reducing the luxury emissions of a wealthy elite, whose carbon footprint is orders of magnitude larger than that of the rest of us. It is unacceptable that the super-rich continue criss-crossing around the world while millions are suffering from disastrous climate impacts."

PJA France Make Them Pay Dassault Falcon police

“The rich are destroying the planet, the damage is irreversible, and we have to stop them. Banning private jets, taxing frequent flyers, and making the polluters pay is a first step.”

Continuing with our actions from November, on Valentine's day, February 14, 2023, more than 200 climate activists and over 50 scientists and academics engaged in nonviolent direct action against private aviation in 11 different countries. Watch the video of our actions below, and join us to fight this excessive carbon inequality and injustice!

Our Demands

Ban Private Jets

Flying is the fastest way to fry the planet — it’s the quickest way to burn fossil fuel and produce greenhouse gas emissions. Aviation is the pinnacle of climate, social, and economic injustice. Private aviation is the peak of these injustices. Private jets are 10 times more carbon intensive than airliners, and 50 times more polluting than trains. A four-hour private flight emits as much as the average person does in a year.

Despite the Cost-of-Living crisis affecting millions around the world, there are more billionaires than ever who have profited through recent health and economic crises, and sales of private jets are sky-high.

Excessive private jet use is entirely inappropriate during a climate emergency – many Citizens’ Assemblies have recommended that they should be banned. Where they continue to operate, private jet users should pay for their pollution through an increased jet fuel tax.

Make Them Pay graph emissions by income

Tax Frequent Fliers

Rose Make Them Pay plane tax frequent fliers

Various Citizens’ Assemblies e.g. in the UK, Scotland, and France, have recommended that frequent flyers and those who fly further should pay more.

Taxes on air travel would be a socially progressive way of raising climate finance and have been proposed by the group representing the most vulnerable countries at COP27 as an effective way to raise climate finance and pay for loss and damage, and cancel debt. Studies show that we could easily raise in excess of $100 billion a year this way.

Make Polluters Pay

It is only fair that the wealthiest in society and the highest-income, highest-emitters pay for their climate damage, and pay the most into climate loss and damage funds for the most affected peoples and areas to mitigate and adapt to the worst impacts of climate change. These ‘equity’ principles have also been agreed to and established under the international Paris Agreement, signed by all countries in 2015.

The top 1% of the global population by income are responsible for more emissions than the bottom 50% combined. So not only is it a question of morality that the wealthiest in society pay the most, and commit to the most rapid emissions reductions – it’s also a mathematical necessity and a question of practicality and science.

We support the demands coming from the most vulnerable countries to establish a system of global taxation of funding payments on high polluters. The revenues will be used for: climate action, climate finance, climate loss & damage, climate adaptation, and the cancellation of debt, which shackles developing countries and can prevent them from investing in the transition to low-carbon energy.


We are at our strongest when we join forces with other groups. For this campaign, we collaborated with Extinction Rebellion, Stay Grounded, and Debt 4 Climate.

Make Them Pay collaboration group logos