Rome’s Trevi Fountain turned black by climate protesters

Environmental activists have dyed the waters of the Trevi Fountain in Rome black as part of a protest against climate change.

Seven young activists climbed into the famous Italian landmark on Sunday and poured diluted charcoal into the water - which is typically clear and appears pale blue - to turn it black.

The protesters from the Ultima Generazione” (“Last Generation”) group held up banners saying “We won’t pay for fossil [fuels],” and shouted “our country is dying”.

 (Alessandro Penso via REUTERS)
(Alessandro Penso via REUTERS)

Uniformed police waded into the water to take away the activists, while video showed many tourists filming the stunt and some onlookers shouting insults at the protesters.

In a statement, Ultima Generazione called for an end to public subsidies for fossil fuels and linked the protests to deadly floods in the northern Italian region of Emilia-Romagna in recent days.

The group said one in four houses in Italy are at risk from flooding.

Rome mayor Roberto Gualtieri condemned the protest, which is the latest in a series of acts targeting works of art in Italy.


“Enough of these absurd attacks on our artistic heritage,” he wrote on Twitter.

The tradition is for visitors to toss coins into the famous 18th century Trevi Fountain to ensure that they will return to Rome one day.

Designed by Italian architect Nicola Salvi, it was completed in 1762 by Giuseppe Pannini and others.