Richmond Heathrow Campaign public meeting on Heathrow expansion was excellent!

January 18, 2008 at 6:06 pm | Posted in 2M Group, Adding capacity at Heathrow airport, Aviation, ClearSkies, Climate change, CO2 emissions, Economics, Economics of climate change, Emissions increases, FoE, Friends of the Earth, GHG emissions, HACAN, Heathrow, Heathrow expansion, Rally, Richmond, Richmond Heathrow Campaign, Stern Review, Westminster | 2 Comments
Richmond public meeting on Heathrow expansion 18 January 2008

Just back from the public meeting organised by the London Borough of Richmond-upon-Thames, a leading council of the 2M Group, supported by Richmond Heathrow Campaign and HACAN ClearSkies, with FOE supplying posters reminding people that high-speed trains could replace planes for domestic travel, and increased greenhouse gas emissions from aviation will impact climate change, (even if we trade those emissions).

The auditorium was packed, and I was up in the balcony to one side. Although there were likely some undecideds in the audience to begin with, by the end of an exciting well-managed and polite evening, peppered with a little heckling from the back of the balcony, the several hundred strong audience was unanimous in a show of hands to oppose the expansion of Heathrow airport. The only person against the idea was a lord on the panel, Lord Soley, who failed to convince anyone to see things from his point of view, though he maintains that the world outside that auditorium sees things very differently. We know they do, because many have not been made aware of the situation, and others don’t care.

Anyway, I picked up materials (which you will see in our street as well as online soon) and shall report more on this meeting tomorrow.

For now, you should be aware that Borough councillors and local back-bench MPs have pledged cross-party support for this Heathrow campaign and will use the powers they have to fight the Government’s decision to back a third runway.

You are urged to check the Richmond Heathrow Campaign website. If you are a resident in that London borough, you are ahead of the rest of us, and I hope the other councils will take a leaf from Richmond’s book (she writes just after midnight as another aircraft disturbs my kids sleep …)

You are also encouraged to make HACAN ClearSkies website a favourite destination as it will help you keep up-to-date with campaign news for the whole Heathrow area.

Richmond public meeting on Heathrow expansion 18 January 2008

The most important upcoming action and event and point to remember are these:

  • Action: respond to the DfT Consultation well before 27 February 2008.

  • Event: attend Mass Rally against Airport Expansion in Central Halls Westminster at 7pm on 25 February 2008.

  • Remember: This is not a done deal.

The community must demonstrate unity.

Offers of support are very welcome.

We need extensive national and international publicity for the British Government’s Adding capacity at Heathrow airport proposal.

We need the support of world-class scientists and economists to help build and strengthen the case against the Government’s proposal, which fails to account for climate change effectively, and describes only positive economic benefits (ignoring negative financial impacts).

Our families and friends in the rest of Britain need to hear what is proposed for our area, how it will affect us locally, and how it will affect our nation and everyone globally as we add greenhouse gas emissions at the very time we know we need to cut them as much as possible and as soon as possible.

In short, we need to build support nationally and internationally at the highest levels to put pressure on the Government, the Department of Transport and the Transport Minister Ruth Kelly. They have made up their minds. It is up to all of us to work together to make them change them.

No matter what the Government tells us, this is not a done deal.

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2 Comments »

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  1. Great account of the meeting. Yes, the word needs to be spread and the message taken to a wider audience. You may like to see my account of the meeting at http://www.richmond-online.co.uk

    It’s interesting to see different takes of the meeting and the same main points noted.

    Trevor

  2. Thanks, Trevor. I am heading out for the day now, but I intend to write more on this topic later, and will definitely read your account. I encourage everyone to read your post and consider how they can help spread the word, by word of mouth or online. The more good coverage the merrier 😉


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