Photos and footage posted to the group's social media feeds on May 1 show demonstrators gathered around a massive pink boat placed in the middle of the Granville and Georgia intersection, emblazoned with the phrase "Tell the truth."
The vessel is named Tahlequah, "after the orca J35," the group explained in a tweet. In 2018, after her calf died, the southern resident killer whale made headlines for carrying the calf's body for 17 days in an unprecedented display of grief.
"This crisis isn't just about carbon - it's about extinction. The web of life getting thinner," the post continued.
Saturday's protest began at noon on the steps of the Vancouver Art Gallery. From there, demonstrators went on to set up in the nearby intersection. Vancouver police issued a traffic alert regarding the intersection's closure and advised motorists to avoid the area. Police stood by as protestors peacefully occupied the intersection throughout the afternoon, but reportedly began announcing that protesters must clear shortly after 4 p.m.
The demonstration takes place on the first day of a five-day-long "Spring Rebellion" that's scheduled to hit various locations throughout the city this week. A coalition of Extinction Rebellion Vancouver members, allies, and concerned citizens have said they plan to camp on the streets downtown Vancouver for the duration of the campaign.
On Sunday, the group plans to shut down the Granville Street Bridge to "highlight Extinction Rebellion's second demand: Act Now." The following day, demonstrators say they will shut down the Lions Gate Bridge to "say no to fossil fuel exports in waters of the Salish Sea, and to demand a Citizens' Assembly on climate and ecological justice."
Following these two major disruptions, Extinction Rebellion will host a bike/skate for climate and educational sessions with elders and members of host first nations on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Dozens of arrests are expected throughout the five-day rebellion, the group explained in a news release.
—With files from Elana Shepert