Climate Activists Deflate Tires


photo courtesy of Car and Driver

Jack Birdsall and Brady Whyte

SUV-Hating “Tyre Extinguishers group is out to deflate your tires”. The Tyre Extinguishers is a movement to try and stop the use of combustion engines and to reduce population, but is deflating tires really the answer? 


As stated by the group themselves on their website (, “The evening of Monday 28 November and early morning of Tuesday 29 November, citizens in eight countries deflated tyres on nearly 900 polluting SUVs,” they also claimed that, “This is the biggest coordinated global action against high-carbon vehicles in history, with many more to come.” This is not the first time this group has taken action; they have been deflating tires for at least a few months. Although the start of their group is not known, the website car and driver states that, “Anti-SUV protests are nothing new, and have existed pretty much ever since the large vehicles—too large, to some—became increasingly popular in the 1990s and early 2000s.”


Compared to older environmental protest groups like the Earth Liberation Front; the “Tyre Extinguishers” are not nearly as harmful. Homeland Security started the Earth Liberation Front(ELF) and Animal Liberation front(ALF) are responsible for “Arsons and bombings in the United Sates between 1995 and 2010.” The “Tyre Extinguishers” even have their own website where they explain how to deflate an SUV’s tire. They say not to damage the tire, but make the car unusable and to release the air through the valve rather than slashing the tire. Although this isn’t very harmful to the car itself, it can affect the owners career and day to day life in a negative way. 


Although deflating tires is illegal, the growing problem of pollution is something that needs to be fixed. A way to help with the air pollution problem could be to spread a message to people, maybe by encouraging people to switch over to electric powered machines such as cars, tools, and other electric powered items. Another thing people can do is to drive less. Bernie Sanders once said, “I see a future where getting to work or to school or to the store does not have to cause pollution.” This quote may mean we will eventually switch over to a world with more electric vehicles, and other ways of transportation that will not affect polluting the air as much as gas or diesel does. If a place is not too far to ride a bike, ride a bike. Ways of encouraging people to help with air pollution could be from social media, also by example spreading a message on a billboard.


In conclusion, everyone can agree that air pollution is a growing problem and we should find ways to combat it. Although we should find alternative ways other than deflating peoples tires.