I see the week long protests have began at Heathrow, joining the usual holiday season tales of Heathrow woes (overcrowding, lost baggage etc)...
I think what will be interesting this time is how the police deal with it, especially in this climate of terrorist threats etc. I personally applaud protests (when conducted in a proper, peaceful manner) but wonder about its effectiveness when everybody is aware of the climate issues anyway and that Terminal 5 will happen as this summer shows how much Heathrow is currently struggling...
I'm not entirely sure that campaigners will persuade people to give up air travel especially in these times where the world is a smaller place. And I've resigned myself to the fact that there's nothing to be done about the airport's expansion. But I do think that if the protest stays peaceful - after all they are just trying to envigorate a debate on the effects of climate change, then I don't think it's a waste of time. I think the subject of airport-linked environmental damage is an important issue and needs people like them to highlight it to the general public and politicians who could then fund some research into reducing the effects or coming up with alternatives.
It would also appear that the campaigners are much more organised than Heathrow!
It may be a valuable protest according to those people who have nowhere to spend their money (otherwise I wonder how they make their livings), but it's a big waste of time for the police who had to deal with these people while on guard to prevent any possible terror attacks.
It really makes no sense if the official is worry about ground to air missile being shot from the near by field but at the same time didn't take action against these people who are actually "camping" in the area.
It doesn't make sense if their campaign is to stop people travelling by plane when having 50-500 people sit together on a plane. What are they gonna do if they're not travelling by plane? They then travel by car. And imagine how many cars will be running on the streets if those 50-500 people all decided to drive on their own.
I'm probably extremely ignorant about how can airplane release excessive emission than cars, but I'm not sure when one considering gazillions of cars running around the world at any given time is still a lesser threat to any of 25000 civil airliners flying everyday. May be those people should just change their name to "Car Stupid" instead.
Time to move on and get a life and tackle the REAL problem. Yes, airline industry are acknowledging it right now and they are working on the solutions. This is not the extreme time for extreme actions like seizing the wing of A380.
Looking at the 'big picture', I doubt if anyone can really deny that Heathrow doesn't do much for the Green Issue, but that is of little consequence (short term) if you are a member of any of the following groups:
2) Armed Forces
3) Air travellers
4) Residents within a few miles of Heathrow
5) Anyone passing through (by car) this area over the next few days
I would like to see the discussion between Mum, Dad and the kids - having just missed their annual hols due to even more congested/controlled routes to Heathrow - and the protestors.
If the protestors stick to legal, non-disruptive means of bringing attention to their cause then I applaud their restraint and I am sure they will gain a lot of good publicity. But if the mindless, selfish, attention-seeking, trouble-making tiny minority set their mind on causing problems and breaking the law, then all sympathy would be gone. If the already strained Police and Armed Forces have to deal with disruptive protests, attempted break-ins etc and the travelling public have to suffer even more delays then i believe the full force of the law should fall upon them.
You know what I find so irritating about these damn tree-huggers? They choose to demonstrate at an airport in a country that does not allow regular flights by aircraft with less than Stage III-compliant engines.
The aircraft that fly into Heathrow (with the exception of maybe the Iran Air B747-200) are some of the world's most efficient and eco-friendly transports in existence.
If they really wanna make a point about how aviation is ruining our planet, why don't they all bugger off to Moscow or St. Petersburg where these coal-burning beauties are still plying their trade?
The following is a quote from another (not-to-be-named) aviation site which I think pretty-much sums up the pointlessness of these latest 'protests':
'Saving the planet' is, in my opinion, not the job of a few thousand ill-informed cold-washers. If they want to 'save the planet', [they should] do something really useful by joining the Peace Corps or teaching safe sex to kids in Africa. That is an example of something that might actually have a tangible positive benefit for the human race, and 'the planet'.
Sure, the earth is heating up, but did anyone stop to think that it might be caused by the sun getting hotter? I don't doubt that Global Warming™ is affecting the planet, but for christ's sake, it was warmer back in Middle Ages (before the little ice age) than it is now - how many aircraft were flying about back then?
These protests are nothing more than some bored students sitting in a field for a few days. My guess is that they didn't have enough pocket money to buy tickets for the Reading Festival......
Vidi, Vici, Veni. I saw, I conquered, I came.
Have a look at this on the bbc website:
Victor:Have a look at this on the bbc website:
I think this kind of thing is going to happen all week, as they want as much media coverage as possible...
I think there has been some excellent points here, i especially agree that Heathrow is by no means the biggest airport or the worst when it comes to emissions. It just seems to be a beacon for environmentalists at the moment
aviator1:Heathrow is by no means the biggest airport or the worst when it comes to emissions. It just seems to be a beacon for environmentalists at the moment
I could probably respect these idiots more if they actually knew what they were doing in the first place....
'Plain Stupid'? You got it.
To be honest, as long as they're not breaking the law I can't say I've really got a problem with what they're doing, I may not agree with it but I don't have a problem with it. If any of them break the law or endanger someone's life then by all means throw the book at them but until then they have the right to keep on doing what they're doing.
My wings are like a shield of steel.
Maybe we should all chip in and rent a CL-415. We could use it to scoop up these tree huggers and dump them in a forest somewhere miles from anywhere, to hug trees to their hearts content.
All these protesters should stop wasting people's valuable time and get a job. Also stop giving them the publicity which they seem to crave for.
Having just come back from a long weekend in Hungary and reading about their not so distant political past, the value of protest is all too important, however, it seems that the target chosen here is more for it's publicity impact, rather than sense.
For example, I was amazed to read in a recent report about the amount of carbon dioxide emitted from patio heaters in Scotland alone. It is estimated that 161,000 households in Scotland own, or plan to buy, an outdoor heater. The report goes on to state that this would produce about 7,700 tonnes of carbon dioxide every year. This pollution is equivalent to driving a car from Glasgow to John O'Groats and back 43,000 times or more poiniently, flying a 'jumbo jet' between London and New York 37 times. One patio heater used for one hour can waste enough energy to make 400 cups of tea.
Perhaps the protesters should be camped outside the numerours retailers selling these seemingly innocuous items of garden equipment.
Their's is surely a poor lot and we must sympathise with the harsh conditions and suffering they are finding themselves enduring...........NOT !!!!
Is there anybody out there?
It seems like the protesters have got a few unwelcome and more troublesome visitors:
It seems that some of them have found some PritStick:
Just the practicalities of glueing yourself to a building intrigues me...
The cynic in me says the superglue is probably down to the fact that no matter how gently the police try to remove them a protester will inevitably lose some skin which in turn will lead to "Police brutalise protesters!!" headlines.
I can't understand why they're targeting BAA and the airport itself, rather than trying to win over the hearts and minds of the travelling public. They only way they will succeed is to persuade people to fly less because they want to, not because they are forced to.