Recently a YouGov poll commissioned by Gatwick airport – unclear what the exact wording was, or who was polled – claimed about three quarters of residents backed the airport’s expansion. However, at a Crawley full council meeting, the majority vote was against the proposal. This is what they will put in the council response to the Gatwick Master Plan consultation that is currently going on. The opposition is unsurprising as Crawley council have made their feelings clear in previous years, objecting to the 2nd runway. A year ago Crawley approved the building of a new Boeing hangar, for aircraft maintenance, as they hoped this would bring local jobs. In the council there is a real concern that the growth proposed would have too detrimental an effect on the environment. Gatwick claim it is making less noise now (a claim that many severely overflown residents would not believe, especially with noise at night) and “30% of its fleet will comprise quieter aircraft by 2022.” Local group CAGNE has asked hat the airport disclose details the safety incidents that have already occurred whilst using the emergency runway when the main runway is closed for maintenance.
There seems to be a rift between what the Council think is right and what the residents do.
Only a week ago a poll commissioned by the airport stated that three quarters of residents polled were in favour of the master plan.
But in a full council held last night, the majority vote was against the proposal.
Realistically the result is no surprise as the Council had made their feelings clear in previous years objecting to the second runway.
Interestingly it was only a year ago that the Council voted to allow for the building of the new Boeing hangar, a new hub that would allow maintenance of aircraft from across Europe. Whilst the hangar would not increase air traffic in the same way, its approval was given after many councillors stated how it would bring much needed jobs and revenue into the area.
So there is a hunger for building, improving and growing resources at Gatwick but not it seems with increasing passenger numbers.
Whilst the majority of councillors who spoke did support Gatwick there was a real concern that the growth proposed would have too much of a detrimental effect on the environment.
Only this morning Gatwick published a press release where they said the airport had seen a 3% reduction in its noise footprint to the previous year. They said that this was in part to their initiative to modify the A320, an aircraft most used at Gatwick. They also say that 30% of its fleet will comprise quieter aircraft by 2022.
But these findings have fallen on deaf ears with the council and also objection groups including CAGNE (Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions) who this week demanded that the airport disclose the safety incidents that have already occurred whilst using the emergency runway when the main runway is closed for maintenance.
A Gatwick spokesperson said:
“It is disappointing that the Council does not recognise the economic boost our plans would deliver for future generations, including thousands of jobs, new global connections and opportunities for local businesses. The decision also appears out of touch with the views of residents surveyed across Sussex in a recent independent YouGov poll, who overwhelmingly support Gatwick growing within its existing footprint (74%), with only 16% opposed.
“Local economic prosperity cannot be taken for granted and neither can the important role Gatwick plays in Crawley. While disappointed at this decision, we will consider the views of everyone who responds to our consultation before publishing our final master plan next year.”
Crawley Borough Council votes by 25:11 to oppose 2nd runway at Gatwick
January 27, 2015
A special Full Council meeting of Crawley Borough Council has voted by 25:11 against a 2nd runway at Gatwick. The meeting was held on 26th January, to discuss the content of the Council’s response to the Airports Commission consultation, and whether the Council would take no position, pro or anti the runway – or decide one way or the other. After two hours of debate, in front of a packed public gallery, a recorded vote was taken – it was a free vote, with councillors allowed to vote how they saw fit, rather than according to party lines. The suggested Cabinet wording was that “The Full Council considers that the interests of Crawley residents and businesses are best served by the Council objecting to a second runway being developed at Gatwick.” The objection will be recorded in the council’s response to the Commission. Five councillors – Stephen Joyce, Colin Moffatt, Chris Oxlade, Peter Smith and council leader Peter Lamb – felt the council should have agreed to take no specific view on the 2nd runway at this time. All five then voted not to object to the new runway. Most other local councils have also recently voted against the runway. Details below.
IATA (International Air Transport Association) says carriers are ‘cautiously optimistic’ about 2019 as it predicts the global airline industry will net US$35.5 billion throughout the year. This forecast comes before the final result for 2018 is know, but is expected to be $32.3 billion. Overall airline industry revenues in 2019 are expected to reach $885 billion, which is 7.7% higher than in 2018. IATA believes demand growth for passenger traffic will be 6% (about 4.59 billion, compared to 4.34 billion this year) and for growth for air cargo will be 3.7%. Due to lower fuel costs (predicted at $65 per barrel) – due to increased output from the US, the industry expects profits, even if there is slightly slower world economic growth. In Europe profits may drop fractionally in 2019, with net profit expected at $7.4 billion in 2019 compared to $7.5 billion in 2018, due to “intense competition” between airlines. There were profit reductions in 2018 in Europe due to air traffic control strikes, and not enough air traffic controllers. Average fares are expected to be $324 (at current currency rates, before surcharges and tax), which IATA says is 61% below 1998 levels – when adjusted for inflation. IATA’s CEO De Juniac said: “Air travel has never been such a good deal for consumers.” No concerns about the carbon emissions.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) says carriers are ‘cautiously optimistic’ about 2019 as it predicts the global airline industry will net US$35.5 billion throughout the year.
IATA’s forecast comes in ahead of the expected $32.3 billion for 2018, though this year’s total is below the $33.8 billion predicted in June.
Overall industry revenues are expected to reach $885 billion, 7.7 per cent more than is expected in 2018.
Although IATA believes demand growth for both passenger traffic (+6 per cent) and cargo (+3.7 per cent) will slow, global passenger numbers could hit 4.59 billion in 2019 (up nearly 6 per cent from this year’s 4.34 billion).
This is all good news for the airline industry, which has been watching the rising oil costs squeeze profitability. IATA says lower oil costs (predicted at $65 per barrel) driven by increased output from the US and solid, but slower, economic growth will ‘extend the run of profits’.
Europe is the only region where profits are expected to drop slightly in 2019, with net profit predicted at $7.4 billion (down from $7.5 billion in 2018). IATA believes “intense competition” is keeping yields low, while regulatory costs are high. The region also lost $2 billion this year due to a 61 per cent increase in delay minutes caused by air traffic control staff shortages and strikes.
IATA also says “high levels of hedging” in Europe will mean the positive impact of lower oil prices will be delayed for airlines operating in the region.
Average fares are expected to be $324 (at current currency rates, before surcharges and tax), which IATA says is 61 per cent below 1998 levels when adjusted for inflation.
Alexandre de Juniac, IATA’s director general and CEO, commented: “We had expected that rising costs would weaken profitability in 2019, but the sharp fall in oil prices and solid GDP growth projections have provided a buffer. So we are cautiously optimistic that the run of solid value creation for investors will continue for at least another year. But there are downside risks as the economic and political environments remain volatile.”
This year has been a difficult one for the industry, with overhead costs spelling the demise of Primera Air one year to the day after the collapse of Monarch. Just two weeks later, Cypriot carrier Cobalt ceased operations after failing to secure further investment.
Icelandic low-cost carrier Wow Air was rumoured to be counting its days after it agreed to cancel an acquisition deal with Icelandair, but investor Indigo Partners swooped in at the last minute to purchase the airline.
De Juniac concluded: “Air travel has never been such a good deal for consumers. Not only are fares staying low, the options for travellers are expanding. Some 1,300 new direct links between cities were opened in 2018. And 250 million more journeys by air occurred in 2018 than 2017.”
A range of environmental organisations in Switzerland have joined forces to appeal to their parliament to introduce an air ticket tax. Two climate protection “angels” took this demand for effective climate protection to the Federal Parliament, as the National Council is now dealing with the air ticket tax as part of Swiss CO2 law revision. Air traffic is already responsible for over 18% of Switzerland’s man-made climate impact – and forecasts show it continuing to grow. Unless something concrete is done, aviation will become the biggest driver of Switzerland’s climate impact until 2030. Despite the high GHG emissions, international aviation is exempt from kerosene tax, value added tax and CO2 tax. Aviation is now heavily subsidised, resulting in very low fares, further accelerating demand growth. Therefore, it is high time for Switzerland to introduce the flight ticket tax, to reduce the impact on the global climate. Surveys confirm that the level of acceptance of a flight ticket tax is high and a majority supports the revenue from an air ticket tax being invested in climate protection projects in Switzerland. Without cutting its aviation CO2 emissions, Switzerland cannot meet its Paris commitments for 2 or 1.5C temperature rise.
Climate protection needs a flight ticket!
Monday, December 10, 2018
Campaign train instead of flight – Flight ticket tax
By Daniel Costantino
Two climate protection angels with their request, outside the Parliament
The Transport and Environmental Organizations UmverkehR, the VCS Transport Club Switzerland, WWF Switzerland, the Swiss Energy Foundation (SES), the Air Transport Environment and Health Coalition, Alliance Sud and the Climate Alliance (with over 70 organizations) have joined forces appeals to parliament to introduce an air ticket tax.
Two climate protection angels have taken this demand for effective climate protection in front of the Federal Parliament. Today, the National Council is dealing with the air ticket tax as part of the CO2 law revision.
Air traffic is already responsible for over 18% of Switzerland’s man-made climate effect – and forecasts continue to point upwards. Unless something concrete is done, aviation will become the biggest driver of Switzerland’s climate effect until 2030.
Despite the high greenhouse gas emissions, international aviation is exempt from kerosene tax, value added tax and CO2 tax. Aviation is now heavily subsidised, resulting in very low fares and further accelerating demand growth. Therefore, it is high time for Switzerland to introduce the flight ticket tax in order to establish a minimum of cost accuracy and to reduce the negative effects of aviation on the climate.
Parliament has the opportunity to take a first step in the right direction with the introduction of an air ticket tax in the context of the revision of the CO2 Law. A similar levy already exists in many European countries such as England and in all neighbouring countries.
In Switzerland, a CO2 tax on heating oil has long been accepted as a control measure. Surveys of the research institute gfs-zurich on behalf of the SES confirm that the acceptance of a flight ticket tax in the population is high. A majority supports the revenue from an air ticket tax to invest in climate protection projects in Switzerland.
If Switzerland wants to achieve the Paris climate targets, it must adapt its transport and climate policy. The Paris climate goals want to limit global warming to well below 2 degrees Celsius and below1.5 degrees Celsius warming compared to pre-industrial times. Without reducing air traffic emissions, this goal cannot be achieved.
The organizations umverkehR, VCS Switzerland, WWF Switzerland, the Swiss Energy Foundation, the coalition KLUG, Alliance Sud and the Climate Alliance (with more than 70 organizations) are demanding that Parliament now take responsibility. If Switzerland wants to implement an effective climate protection policy, it must introduce an air ticket tax.
For further information:
Daniel Costantino, Head of Campaign umverkehR, email@example.com , 079 647 83 48
Yves Chatton, Campaign Manager VCS, firstname.lastname@example.org , 031 328 58 64
Airlines are failing to take up the most efficient planes in sufficient numbers to make a significant dent in their carbon dioxide emissions, a new study by Atmosfair has found. The most efficient new aircraft models, such as the Boeing 787-9 and Airbus A350-900 and A320neo, can achieve substantial CO2 savings over older models, but no airlines have invested sufficiently in the new types to reach the top levels of energy efficiency, according to the 2018 ranking by the German NGO. In it no airlines received an A for efficiency, and only 2 airlines were ranked in efficiency class B. Atmosfair also found that only 10% of airlines worldwide were succeeding in keeping their greenhouse gas emissions constant (let alone not reducing them) while flight numbers grew. Carbon emissions from airlines grew by about 5% last year, while the number of kilometres flown increased by 6%. The results show that the efficiency improvements of the vast majority of airlines worldwide is not sufficient to keep within the 2C or 1.5C target of the Paris agreement. The sector needs new and radical measures to limit their carbon emissions, and CO2-neutral fuels – if they were possible [which is probably unlikely]. British Airways was placed at 74th, with an efficiency rating of D.
Airlines are failing to take up the most efficient planes in sufficient numbers to make a significant dent in their carbon dioxide emissions, a new study has found.
The most efficient new aircraft models, such as the Boeing 787-9 and Airbus A350-900 and A320neo, can achieve substantial carbon savings over older models, but no airlines have invested sufficiently in the new types to reach the top levels of energy efficiency, according to a ranking by Atmosfair, a German NGO.
In the annual Atmosfair Airline Index for 2018, published on Saturday, no airlines received an A for efficiency, and only two airlines were ranked in efficiency class B.
TUI Airways, the British holiday airline, came top of the rankings for the second year running, reaching just under 80% of the possible optimum level of carbon emissions. TUI Fly, the company’s German counterpart, came in fourth.
Atmosfair also found that only one in 10 airlines worldwide were succeeding in keeping their greenhouse gas emissions constant while achieving economic growth. Among these were Thai Airways, Finnair, American Airlines and All Nippon Airlines.
Dietrich Brockhagen, executive director of Atmosfair, said: “Our results show that the efficiency improvements of the vast majority of airlines worldwide is not sufficient [to keep within the] 2C or 1.5C target [of the Paris agreement]. We need new, synthetic and CO2-neutral fuels and other more radical measures to curb CO2 emissions in the sector.”
British Airways was placed at 74th, with an efficiency rating of D, behind companies such as Aeroflot and Aeromexico. It fell behind many of Europe’s other flag carriers, including Alitalia, Lufthansa, Air France, KLM and Iberia.
British Airways said: “We are committed to reducing our carbon emissions and have improved efficiency by more than 10% since 2008. We are well on course to deliver a 25% improvement in carbon emissions reduction by 2025. British Airways is the first airline in Europe to invest in building a plant to generate renewable jet fuel from household waste, and last week we kicked off a research project with some of the UK’s leading universities to find a way to power a long-haul aircraft with 300 customers on board with zero emissions.”
The company also pointed to a commitment by its parent group IAG to invest $400m (£313.6m) on alternative sustainable fuel development over the next 20 years.
Branson co-founded the Carbon War Room, which since 2009 has operated as a non-profit organisation aimed at speeding up the adoption of cleaner, low-emissions technology by businesses.
Virgin took issue with the report methodology, saying it misrepresented the airline. A spokeswoman added: “We have undertaken a massive renewal programme to replace our entire fleet over a 10 year period, switching from four-engine aircraft to much more efficient two-engine aircraft. As a result we have reduced our aircraft carbon emissions by 23.7% since 2007. Our carbon emissions will continue to reduce as we take delivery of more new aircraft over the next three years.”
Carbon emissions from airlines grew by about 5% last year, while the number of kilometres flown increased by 6%, according to Atmosfair, showing that much more needs to be done to ensure aviation does not take up an unsustainable amount of the world’s remaining “carbon budget”. Biofuels are being given trials as an alternative to fossil fuels for aviation, but these carry their own difficulties, not least the threat of deforestation. Virgin recently used recycled waste to fuel a flight, a potentially more environmentally sound alternative.
“You cannot beat physics, therefore long-haul flights will not be feasible with heavy batteries and electric engines,” said Brockhagen. “But you can produce carbon neutral kerosene synthetically, using carbon extracted from the air, water and green electricity. This is ready technologically, but 10 times more expensive per gallon than fossil kerosene. Who will invest the billions to scale this technology up? If airlines grouped together they could do it, but this would require an international spirit of cooperation over competition, so far rarely seen in the industry.”
There are also ways for airlines to reduce their emissions without resorting to new fuels and planes, through adjusting their pilots’ flying practices and small tweaks to planes. Some airlines look to offset their emissions through carbon reductions elsewhere.
A spokesman for Airlines UK, which represents the industry, said: “UK airlines are making enormous efforts to reduce their carbon emissions, and are committed to a global target to cut CO2 emissions from all flights by 50% of their 2005 levels by 2050, through technology, operational efficiency improvements and the use of sustainable biofuels.
“On top of this, in 2016 the International Civil Aviation Organization adopted the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation to address CO2 emissions from international aviation – a global first for any sector.”
The Aviation Environment Federation have produced a series of discussion papers, on environmental aspects of aviation policy that need to be properly dealt with in the government’s forthcoming new “Aviation Strategy” consultation, and then an Aviation White Paper in 2019. There are papers on noise and carbon emissions, and now one on air pollution. The AEF says the UK needs clarity on how airport expansion can be achieved keeping to air pollution commitments. We need better information on pollution that comes from planes, outside the “landing and take off cycle”, which only covers planes up to 3,000 feet altitude. We also need better mapping of where the air pollution is, around airports, showing legal limit values and WHO maximum levels for pollutants. There should be clarity on how air pollutants will increase, if the number of flights at an airport increase, and how this affects the “National Emissions Ceiling Directive” (NECD) limit values. AEF says a lot more clarity is needed, on whether it is true most of the air pollution around airports comes from road vehicles (associated with the airport or not) and how much is from planes themselves. There has been no national review of airport air pollution since 2003, for airports other than Heathrow.
AEF releases air quality recommendations ahead of aviation strategy consultation
Dec 6th 2018 (The Aviation Environment Federation website – AEF)
In the last of our series of discussion papers on the key environmental questions we want to see addressed by the new Aviation Strategy, AEF sets out the air quality challenges posed by UK aviation. As the UK prepares its post-Brexit Environment Act, we consider the gap between currently legislated limit values for air pollution and the evidence on health impacts, what this could mean for aviation, and how both information and regulation should be improved.
The UK Aviation Strategy is due out for consultation by the end of this year, with a White Paper planned for next summer. The air quality policy should, we argue:
Clarify how airport planning decisions will help deliver air quality commitments,
Close the current information gaps with respect to air pollution from aviation, by
Setting out the evidence base in relation to aircraft air pollution outside the landing and take-off cycle,
Providing (a) updated mapping of air pollution levels around UK airports with respect to legal limit values and WHO recommended maximum levels for pollutant concentrations; and (b) an assessment of how any increase in aircraft emissions or airport-related emissions affects National Emissions Ceilings Directive (NECD)limit values, and
Setting out what approach individuals concerned about air pollution near their airport should take, and
Ensure the UK supports the setting of effective technology standards by assessing whether the current international standards are tough enough.
AEF has previously published discussion papers onnoise and on climate change, by way of input to the draft strategy. Our latest paper can be viewed here.
Air pollution travels over long distances, affects human health, degrades buildings and other man-made structures and adversely affects the natural environment through acidification, eutrophication and ground-level ozone. The European Community agreed to set emission ceilings through the National Emission Ceilings Directive (NECD) to protect its citizens, its man-made structures and its diverse environments. The revised NECD (2016/2284/EU), which entered into force on 31 December 2016, sets new emission reduction commitments for each Member State for the total emissions of NOx, SOx, NMVOC, NH3 and PM2.5 in 2020 and 2030. The new Directive repeals and replaces Directive 2001/81/EC to ensure that the emission ceilings for 2010 set in that Directive shall continue to apply until 2020. Member States have to report their emission inventories annually to the European Environment Agency (EEA) and the European Commission in order to monitor progress and verify compliance. The reporting requirement is closely aligned with those for the Convention on Long-range Transboundary Air Pollution (CLRTAP), which include a common scope of reporting of pollutant inventories and similar reporting timeframe. Under the revised NECD, each Member State is required to publish by April 2019 a National Air Pollution Control Programme, setting out the measures it will put in place to reduce emissions to meet the 2020 and 2030 emission reduction commitments.
Transport & Environment (T&E) have produced a report on how to decarbonise (ie. zero carbon) European transport by 2050. It has many suggestions on aviation. A few quotes from the report: “By driving out the use of fossil kerosene fuel in aviation through carbon pricing and requiring aircraft to switch to synthetic fuels, and advanced biofuels to a very limited extent, the climate impact of flying can be reduced dramatically. Zero emission electrofuels and very low carbon advanced sustainable biofuels can be produced today and deployed immediately using existing engines and infrastructure.” … “While synfuels can solve aviation’s CO2 problem, the non-CO2 problem will require additional measures to be mitigated.” … “In Europe [aviation] emissions have doubled since 1990, and globally they could, without action, double or treble by 2050.” … “Aviation is at risk of having its emissions locked in due to the growth in passenger numbers and aircraft fleet, consuming the limited carbon budget to remain within the 1.5°C and 2°C targets of the Paris Agreement.” … “By 2030, advanced biofuels are expected to contribute only 3.5% of all transport fuels (including cars, trucks, aviation) and their growth beyond this date is likely to be constrained due to land availability and competing industries.” … “ICAO, with its weak target of net 2020 emissions and reliance on offsetting instead of cutting emissions, is only capable of delivering a global minimum effort. Much more ambitious action” is needed.
How to decarbonise European transport by 2050
November 27, 2018
from Transport & Environment (T&E)
Transport is Europe’s biggest climate problem accounting for 27% of its GHG emissions in 2017. Transport pollution is causing the illness and premature deaths of hundreds of thousands of Europeans. Meanwhile the EU spends over 200 billion a year importing oil to power its transport fleet. A shift in spending from imported oil to domestically produced technology and energy would not only have major economic benefits but would also help eliminate transport pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.
This report summarises a series of studies by Transport & Environment. (T&E analysed pathways for decarbonisation in the road freight, aviation, shipping and car sectors.) It demonstrates that transport can and must be decarbonised by 2050 at the very latest, not only to limit global warming but also to ensure Europe’s competitiveness, its energy sovereignty and the health and well-being of its 500 million citizens.
The goal of this paper is to describe how transport can be decarbonised, and the implications for other sectors, particularly electricity production. The paper covers all transport modes: cars, vans, land freight (trucks and trains), ships and airplanes. In the case of aviation and shipping, we looked into how to reduce and then decarbonise the equivalent of energy sold to those modes in Europe, i.e. departing flights and voyages.
By driving out the use of fossil kerosene fuel in aviation through carbon pricing and requiring aircraft to switch to synthetic fuels, and advanced biofuels to a very limited extent, the climate impact of flying can be reduced dramatically. Zero emission electrofuels and very low carbon advanced sustainable biofuels can be produced today and deployed immediately using existing engines and infrastructure. Electrofuels are produced by combining hydrogen with carbon dioxide, but to do this sustainably the hydrogen must be produced using renewable electricity and the CO2 captured directly from the air. Estimates on the additional cost of synthetic kerosene vary with some studies claiming cost parity in 2050 but this would require very cheap electricity. In our report we assumed synthetic kerosene will remain more expensive and tickets become around 23% more expensive. While synfuels can solve aviation’s CO2 problem, the non-CO2 problem will require additional measures to be mitigated.
Figure 3 below (Page 9) summarises the share of emissions per mode. Aviation and navigation represent the emissions associated with fuel sold in the EU including use for international trips. In the context of this report, international trips refer to flights and voyages between two different countries, either within the EU or outside the EU. Only domestic navigation and aviation refer to trips within the same member state. It is an important consideration, because some pieces of analysis tend to exclude international aviation (at least extra-EU flights) and international navigation.
Figure 3: EU GHG transport shares in 2016
Domestic aviation.1.28% International aviation 12.12%
Aviation is already a major and growing emitter. In Europe its emissions have doubled since 1990, and globally they could, without action, double or treble by 2050. Such emissions growth needs to be reversed and brought to zero by 2050 if we are to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement. Aviation is at risk of having its emissions locked in due to the growth in passenger numbers and aircraft fleet, consuming the limited carbon budget to remain within the 1.5°C and 2°C targets of that Agreement.
By 2030, advanced biofuels are expected to contribute only 3.5% of all transport fuels (including cars, trucks, aviation) and their growth beyond this date is likely to be constrained due to land availability and competing industries.
To produce sufficient synthetic fuels to power all passenger cars in 2050 in the baseline scenario would require clean electricity production equivalent to 68% of the size of the current EU electricity production, due to the inefficiency of both the production process and ICEs, as explained in a section below. This does not take into account the other sectors, such as aviation, might actually depend on synthetic fuels to decarbonise. Similarly, the gas industry equally cannot produce sufficient biomethane sustainably from wastes and residues to power a European car fleet, while it should be prioritised in sectors currently using fossil gas, and fossil gas is not an option if cars are to be decarbonised.
In energy terms, bunkers are the energy consumption of ships and aircraft. While domestic flights are covered by national targets, often times emissions from international flights and voyages are excluded. The Kyoto Protocol requested states to work through the UN’s aviation and shipping agencies, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO), to develop measures to limit emissions from the sector.
The Paris Agreement has upended this approach, as it requires parties to develop economy-wide targets and therefore include international aviation and shipping. Furthermore the Paris Agreement requires complete decarbonisation of all sectors of all economies.ICAO, with its weak target of net 2020 emissions and reliance on offsetting instead of cutting emissions, is only capable of delivering a global minimum effort.Much more ambitious action at national and regional level, of the sort proposed below, is required.
In shipping, countries are currently attempting to regulate maritime emissions through the IMO with the EU’s 2023 deadline looming large. Currently, the IMO has a target of reducing emissions by at least 50% by 2050, which is far from decarbonisation in explicit terms. Experience, notably with aviation at ICAO, shows that international agreements tend to fall short of the required stringency in order to exact necessary behavioural, technological and economic changes in the industry. Therefore, it is likely, possibly imperative that complementary and supplementary regional actions will have to be taken to put the maritime industry on a sustainable decarbonisation pathway.
While uncertainties exist, we do know that the sector will have a substantial fuel demand well into the 2030s, 2040s and beyond, the period when our economy needs to increasingly decarbonise. T&E’s decarbonisation report put forward measures to limit that fuel requirement, but ultimately the remaining and substantial fuel demand will need to have its carbon content eliminated. The process of cutting and then decarbonising that fuel demand was the focus of that study. The report found that the expected technology and operations improvements will not mitigate the expected fuel demand and emissions growth from aviation. Generating incremental efficiency improvements from current aircraft designs is becoming ever more costly and difficult. Further operational improvements remain possible but do not achieve decarbonisation and require the right policies to be in place. To significantly reduce the expected fossil fuel demand and ultimately eliminate it from the sector would require further measures. Carbon pricing needs to play a central role in bringing forward further reductions in fuel demand. Exempt from kerosene taxation and with most European aviation emissions excluded from the EU ETS, there is much that needs to be done.
The report showed that introducing fiscal measures that, combined, represent a carbon price equivalent to €150 per tonne can moderate demand growth from the sector through incentivising a combination of design and operational efficiency improvements and modal shift. Other measures highlighted by the report include stricter fuel efficiency standards and incentives to speed up fleet renewal. Our report found that, combined, these measures could cut fuel demand by some 12 Mtoe, or 16.9% in 2050 compared to a business as usual scenario. However that still leaves substantial and increased fuel demand in 2050. The report examined how the carbon footprint of the remaining fuel demand could be cut and where possible eliminated with today’s technology this can only be achieved through the use of sustainable alternative fuels. It demonstrated that this is no easy task, highlighting the issues faced in Europe to date in reducing the carbon intensity of fuels used for road transport.
To decarbonise aviation, new types of alternative fuels need to be brought forward. Our report focused on synthetic fuels, namely electrofuels (known as synthetic kerosene or power-to-liquid), which will be needed to close the gap. Electrofuels are produced through combining hydrogen with carbon from CO2. With the hydrogen produced using additional renewable electricity and with the correct source of CO2 (air capture), such fuels can be close to near zero emissions and carbon circular. Strict safeguards are needed to ensure synthetic kerosene would be produced only from zero emission electricity.
If produced at scale, electrofuels are likely to cost between three and six times more than untaxed jet fuel. At a cost of €2,100 per tonne electrofuel uptake will increase ticket prices by 59%, resulting in a 28% reduction in projected passenger demand compared to a business-as-usual scenario. However, compared to the ticket price of €150 per tonne the ticket price increase would only be 23%. The report found that introducing a progressively more stringent low carbon fuel standard (GHG target) on aviation fuel suppliers will leave all operators flying within or from Europe needing to purchase such fuels. These rising fuel costs will increase operating costs which will inevitably be passed onto consumers, causing a fall in demand for jet fuel compared to forecasts and reducing the volume of alternative fuels that will be required to replace kerosene.
A further note of caution in the report was that while the use of such fuels can put aviation on a pathway to decarbonisation, getting to zero emissions, the generally accepted term for decarbonisation, will be difficult because producing alternative fuels which, on a life cycle basis, are 100% carbon free is very challenging. Advanced biofuels could play a role in substituting fossil fuel demand in aviation. However, strict sustainability safeguards are needed to ensure advanced biofuels offer genuine emission savings – these are not yet in place. If fuels with poor environmental and climate credentials would be excluded, the potential supply of advanced biofuels would be very limited. Our report finds that they could play a role – meeting up to 11% of the remaining 2050 fuel demand in our scenario – but alone won’t be available in the quantities needed. This is partly because non-transport sectors will also have a claim to biomass feedstocks, reducing availability.
The report did not rule out the role that radical new aircraft designs could play in significantly reducing aviation emissions, for example hydrogen or electric aircraft. However such aircraft are not expected to be in operation in significant numbers until the 2040s, and will find it especially challenging to replace conventional aircraft for long-haul flights. What is less speculative is that significant liquid fuel demand will exist right through to 2050, and for that reason, the report focuses heavily on how such fuels can be decarbonised. Should hydrogen aircraft technology develop more rapidly this would not be at odds with significant investment in synthetic fuels as hydrogen is a key input for electrofuels.
Aside from decarbonising aviation fuels, the warming from aviation’s non-CO2 effects at altitude is considerable and is a challenge that is barely being touched. While the report discussed these effects and identified possible mitigation approaches, there remains a lack of policy focus and investment in scientific research on this topic. This failure to act means we are unable to propose a suite of mitigation measures nor estimate their effects. What is clear is that the European Commission must meet its obligations under the EU ETS Directive to foster further research and, resulting from that, come forward with proposals on measures by the start of 2020. Finally, the report does not recommend offsetting as this is a solution that is incompatible with the decarbonisation logic of the Paris Agreement. The report outlined what action should look like: aggressively cutting fuel demand, moderating the expected growth in air travel, decarbonising the remaining fuel, and addressing the sector’s non-CO2 effects.
Heathrow has set out a “plan” to (magically) help it to increase the number of flights by up to 50% but do this in a “carbon neutral” way. Needless to say, there is no detail of how it can actually do this. There is plenty about how it will be investing in “sustainable” fuels. Plenty of blather, without any actual details, about how can achieve an entirely impossible goal. Heathrow says it is looking at action on 4 key areas including: cleaner aircraft technology, [by that it means more fuel efficient, not more clean]; improvements to airspace and ground operations; sustainable aviation fuels [none probably exist, without huge unintended side effects]; and carbon offsetting methods [ie. keeping on emitting, and paying to cancel out the carbon savings made by others elsewhere, postponing the evil moment when they actually reduce aviation CO2 emissions.] There is hype like how they will: “Make Heathrow a leading hub for the development and deployment of sustainable aviation fuels by providing the necessary airport infrastructure, and support for pilot projects” and how they are calling on “ICAO to develop global goals for the uptake of sustainable alternative fuels.” And lots of hope about those peat bogs, which they are hoping will save their bacon ….
Read the text below with full critical faculties awake … It contains a lot of nonsense … beware
Heathrow unveils its plan for carbon neutral growth
1.12.2018 (Heathrow website)
“Airport reveals four key action areas to reduce and offset the growth in emissions from new flights
Announcement demonstrates that growth at the airport is not a choice between economy and environment
Comprehensive plan suggests maximising incentives for airlines, investing in more UK peatland restoration and supporting sustainable fuels
Heathrow will consult with partners on the delivery of this plan ahead of the first statutory consultation on expansion in summer 2019
In a first for the UK aviation industry, today Heathrow has set out its plans to expand in a carbon neutral way. The airport has set out its stall, outlining the role it will play on four key areas to reduce and offset carbon emissions from the growth in flights, created by an additional runway.
Heathrow’s plan builds on the momentum of technological change within the aviation industry to make travel more sustainable. While international aviation demand is projected to increase over the decades ahead – Heathrow will use its leadership and market position, to capitalise on the opportunities from expansion to ensure growth is met in a responsible and sustainable way at the UK’s hub.
The plan outlines action on 4 key areas including:
cleaner aircraft technology,
improvements to airspace and ground operations,
sustainable aviation fuels,
and carbon offsetting methods.
On aircraft technology, Heathrow will:
Treat environmental performance of aircraft as a key consideration of slot allocations for new flights;
Offer free landing fees for a year at the airport for the first commercially viable electric flight;
Continue offering cheaper landing fees for cleaner and quieter aircraft;
Review the infrastructure requirements for charging electric aircraft through the Heathrow Centre of Excellence for Sustainability
On airspace and ground operations, Heathrow will:
Support the Government’s plans on modernising airspace – including the potential elimination of routine stacking for aircraft coming to land;
Reduce emissions from aircraft on the ground through reduced taxi times, increased access to on-stand power sources, and fewer engines used while moving around the airport;
To promote the use of sustainable alternative fuels, Heathrow will:
Make Heathrow a leading hub for the development and deployment of sustainable aviation fuels by providing the necessary airport infrastructure, and support for pilot projects
To develop and promote new ways of carbon offsetting, Heathrow will:
Continue investing in UK peatland restoration and other projects to play a key role in developing the next generation of UK carbon offsets. Peatland restoration has the potential to be amongst the highest-quality, most cost-effective carbon offsetting methods – and a pilot project is already underway in Lancashire.
Heathrow is also calling on:
ICAO – the UN body for international aviation – to develop global goals for the uptake of sustainable alternative fuels
The UK Government to engage ICAO and fellow member states to agree a 2050 goal for international aviation
Over coming months, Heathrow will seek feedback from members in the aviation industry, advocacy groups and climate change experts to set out further details in its plan. Members of the public will then have an opportunity to feed into this process– including plans to mitigate road traffic and construction -in the next statutory consultation on Heathrow expansion in the summer of 2019.
Heathrow Chief Executive, John Holland-Kaye said:
“Climate change is the biggest challenge facing our generation. But it is not aviation that’s the enemy – it is carbon. We are committed to taking the lead to deliver carbon neutral growth in aviation, and the plan we launch today sets out the roadmap to get there.” ”
– ENDS –
Notes to Editors:
“Heathrow’s full carbon neutral growth map is attached as a PDF on the side of this webpage.
About Heathrow Airport and Heathrow 2.0
Heathrow is Europe’s largest airport and one of the world’s top international aviation hubs. As the UK’s global gateway, Heathrow welcomes more than 78 million passengers every year. The airport is home to more than 80 airlines and is Britain’s largest cargo port, helping to drive British trade growth by connecting the nation to more than 200 destinations around the world. Heathrow is currently ranked by passengers as the ‘Best Airport in Western Europe’ for the third year running and the ‘Best Airport for Shopping’ for eight years in a row. Terminal 2 also holds the title of the ‘World’s Best Airport Terminal’ and is the Heathrow’s most sustainable, now powered by 100% renewable gas and electricity. ”
Global aviation and global shipping are two sectors with immense carbon emissions, not properly controlled by any one country. Shipping currently accounts for about 2-3% of global CO2 emissions, and if the sector does not cut fuel burned, this could to 20% of global emissions by 2050. Now the world’s largest container shipping company has “pledged” to cut net CO2 emissions to zero by 2050. It is challenging an industry that is one of the main transporters of global trade and one of the biggest carbon emitters to come up with radical solutions in the next decade. It hopes to make new ships “carbon free” by 2030. The CEO of Maersk, Mr Toft, said: “We will have to abandon fossil fuels. We will have to find a different type of fuel or a different way to power our assets.” But what is suggested is perhaps biofuels, hydrogen, electricity, wind or solar power. It would be a catastrophe for the natural world if shipping also tries to get hold of biofuels (as well as electricity generation, and aviation) with forests and natural habitats for wildlife devastated. Maersk is aiming to meet its target without buying carbon offsets. Mr Toft said: “If you buy offsets, you are basically delaying the pain. What you are doing is buying yourself an excuse and hoping that the money you pay goes to good uses, but you are not tackling the issue at its core.”
Maersk pledges to cut carbon emissions to zero by 2050
World’s largest container shipping group throws down challenge to industry
Container ships currently use bunker fuel, a residue from crude oil that is cheaper but dirtier than petrol and diesel
Richard Milne, Nordic Correspondent (FT)
The world’s largest container shipping company has pledged to cut net carbon emissions to zero by 2050, challenging an industry that is both one of the main transporters of global trade and one of the biggest polluters to come up with radical solutions in the next decade.
AP Moller Maersk, the Danish group that transports nearly one in five seaborne containers, said it needed its entire supply chain from engine makers and shipbuilders to new technology providers to come up with carbon-free ships by 2030 to meet the goal.
“We will have to abandon fossil fuels. We will have to find a different type of fuel or a different way to power our assets. This is not just another cost-cutting exercise. It’s far from that. It’s an existential exercise, where we as a company need to set ourselves apart,” Soren Toft, Maersk’s chief operating officer, told the Financial Times.
Maersk’s target, although distant, is one of the most ambitious from a global industrial group promising to end carbon emissions altogether. Container ships carry about 80 per cent of global trade and currently use bunker fuel, a residue from crude oil that is cheaper but dirtier than petrol and diesel, which means they contribute about 3 per cent of the world’s emissions.
Maersk is not pushing one technology — ideas such as biofuels, hydrogen, electricity or even wind or solar power have been mooted — but is stressing the urgency as most vessels have a life of 20-25 years, meaning that viable solutions need to be found soon.
“To reach the target by 2050, in the next 10 years we need some big breakthroughs,” Mr Toft said.
Maersk is aiming to meet its target without buying carbon offsets. “If you buy offsets, you are basically delaying the pain. What you are doing is buying yourself an excuse and hoping that the money you pay goes to good uses, but you are not tackling the issue at its core,” Mr Toft said.
Some comments from campaigners / experts working in this field:
EU28 could hardly resolve biofuels sustainability criteria for road biofuels and had to settle for a blunt tool to cap the mandate. How could 190 IMO countries agree on a sustainability criteria with food-based bio-feedstock producers (Argentina, Brazil, US, Indonesia, Malaysia, Liberia, etc.) calling the policy shots?
There is also a concern that Maersk has done this as a media stunt to recover the image after being accused in national and international media of dragging their feet on immediate GHG reduction measures. So this needs to be looked at very sceptically.
it’s important to understand that from the perspective of the atmosphere, fuels that reduce emissions over the lifecycle of the fuel are….offsets.
That is, if what’s coming out of the smokestack of the ship is CO2, just as if the ship were burning fossil fuel, then the reductions the ship is counting in terms of its goal of zero carbon are reductions that are happening in the countries where the ship’s fuel is being produced.
Those are…offsets. That is why it’s so important to ensure corresponding adjustments for transfers of those from the fuel-producing countries to the world of international shipping. Otherwise the accounting for them is one-way, like the current CDM.
The overall Maersk announcement is certainly something to celebrate – but important to be able to answer questions about where the fuels come from, what their lifecycle emissions are (and other sustainability aspects) and how they are accounted for, to know how much to celebrate.
Carbon emissions from global shipping to be halved by 2050, says IMO
‘The world’s shipping industry has now, for the first time, defined its commitment to tackle climate change’
Announcement calls for greenhouse gas emissions to be slashed by ‘at least’ 50 per cent – meaning cuts could go much further
Announcement calls for greenhouse gas emissions to be slashed by ‘at least’ 50 per cent – meaning cuts could go much further ( Reuters )
Carbon emissions from the global shipping industry will be cut by at least half by 2050 under a major new international agreement.
Representatives from over 170 countries have spent two weeks at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) in London debating ways to clean up the sector.
Despite opposition from nations including Brazil, Saudi Arabia and the US, the states came to a final agreement on Friday, signalling to industry that a switch away from fossil fuels is fast approaching.
Ultimately the goal is for shipping’s greenhouse gas emission to be reduced to zero by the middle of the century, with most newly built ships running without fossil fuels by the 2030s.
“Like Apollo 11 returning to Earth we knew we needed to land and we did,” said Sveinung Oftedal, chair of greenhouse gas negotiations at the IMO.
Pollution from ships is a major concern, but one that has been largely overlooked in recent years.
One estimate by the International Council on Clean Transportation found that if treated as a country, international shipping would be the sixth largest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world – roughly the same as Germany.
Shipping currently accounts for 2 per cent of global carbon dioxide emissions, and if the sector is not cleaned up experts predict this figure could rise to a fifth of emissions by 2050.
Despite its major role in polluting the planet, shipping was not accounted for in the Paris agreement on climate change.
Mounting pressure has grown on the IMO to come up with a solution to this problem, as it was tasked with limiting and reducing emissions from shipping under the Kyoto Protocol in 1997.
“The International Maritime Organisation’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gases by 50 to 100 per cent in 2050 is major progress,” said Dr Tristan Smith, a shipping expert at University College London.
“The world’s shipping industry has now, for the first time, defined its commitment to tackle climate change, bringing it closer in-line with the Paris agreement.”
The UK government was supportive of the more ambitious end of the targets proposed, pushing for global shipping to abandon fossil fuels entirely within three decades.
However, there has been pushback from nations that fear rapid changes to the shipping sector will damage their economies.
The new announcement calls for greenhouse gas emissions to be slashed by “at least” 50 per cent – wording that is meant to imply anywhere between 50 and 100 per cent.
This is intended to appease Pacific Island states delegations. The London talks have had particular significance for Pacific islanders, whose countries are imminently threatened by rising sea levels.
At the outset of the meeting, Marshall Islands environment minister David Paul laid out his concerns about the threats facing his country.
“The next days in IMO will determine whether Marshallese children born today will have the chance of a secure and prosperous life or will have to leave the land of their ancestors and set sail across the oceans to an uncertain future,” he said.
“This is scientific fact.”
The Marshall Islands – a tiny group of atolls in Micronesia – are home to around 70,000 people, and experts predict under future climate scenarios it is likely they will all have to be evacuated as the sea levels rise.
In a joint statement released before Friday’s announcement, Mr Paul and former UN chief negotiator on climate change, Christiana Figueres, said the strategy represented “significant compromises by countries – not least by vulnerable island nations which had been pushing for something far more ambitious”.
“To get to this point has been hard – very hard,” they said.
The new targets are expected to have a significant impact on the shipping industry.
“A 50 per cent reduction in outright greenhouse gas emissions means most new ships built in the 2030s will have to be zero emission,” said Dr Faig Abbasov, shipping policy expert with the Brussels-based NGO Transport and Environment.
However, an intervention early in the talks by the International Chamber of Shipping – the leading industry association – made it clear they would support reductions in carbon emissions from the sector.
Commentators noted that support from industry reduced the credibility of nations arguing that proposed reduction targets were unrealistic.
“The 2050 goal is achievable. We have in the pipeline some new builds that will use fuel cells,” said Olof Widen, senior advisor at the Finnish Shipowner’s Association.
“When we have a critical mass of these solutions, then we will have a very rapid development.”
Plans for Birmingham Airport’s £500 million expansion have been criticised by Solihull Green councillors amid concerns over rises in greenhouse gas emissions. They say the airport’s draft masterplan is ‘irresponsible’. The increase in passenger numbers after the expansion could see the level of emissions rise to double that produced by the entire city of Wolverhampton every year. The masterplan – covering the next 15 years – includes proposals to increase use of the airport’s existing runway, expand the passenger terminal and baggage sorting areas. The investment aims to prepare the airport to attract 18 million passengers by 2033. This would make Birmingham Airport the region’s largest single source of greenhouse gases. Even before the airport expansion, it is projected to emit 1.7million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) a year by 2030, Department for Transport figures show. By contrast, Wolverhampton’s carbon footprint is about one million tonnes per annum, according to latest government statistics. Just at a time when humanity should be making every possible effort to cut CO2 emissions.
PLANS for Birmingham Airport’s £500million expansion have been criticised by Solihull Green councillors amid concerns over rises in greenhouse gas emissions.
Last week we published comments from Meriden MP Dame Caroline Spelman in support of the plan, after proposals to build a second runway were shelved.But Solihull Green councillor Max McLoughlin has hit out at the airport’s draft masterplan, branding it ‘irresponsible’.
He says the increase in passenger numbers after the expansion could see the level of emissions rise to double that produced by the entire city of Wolverhampton every year.
The masterplan – to be delivered over the next 15 years – includes proposals to increase use of the airport’s existing runway, expand the passenger terminal and baggage sorting areas.
It also aims to improve security, acquire more aircraft parking stands and improve surrounding roads and infrastructure.
The investment aims to prepare the airport to attract 18million passengers by 2033.
The growth ambitions would make the airport the region’s largest single source of greenhouse gas, Coun McLoughlin claims.
Even before the airport expansion, it is projected to emit 1.7million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2) a year by 2030, Department for Transport figures show.
Wolverhampton’s carbon footprint is about one million tonnes per annum, according to latest government statistics.
Coun McLoughlin has called for a rethink, saying: “It’s only been a couple of weeks since the United Nations warned that the world has just 12 years to cut greenhouse gas emissions by half… or we confirm runaway climate change. It’s completely the wrong direction.
“I’m shocked that (West Midlands mayor) Andy Street was willing to put his name to this masterplan. It’s not a masterplan – this is a disaster plan.
“It’s simply irresponsible, and his claims to support a green agenda for the West Midlands are in tatters.
“We are in desperate need of leadership from the mayor to push our economy towards low carbon technology, cleaner transport.
“These airport expansion plans are a real blow to efforts to do our bit in reducing the country’s emissions.”
An airport spokesperson said: “The airport’s carbon footprint is comparatively small, however, we are committed to managing our impact and since 2010 we have reduced our carbon emissions per passenger by over half.
“The report used by the party states that the figures quoted relate to aircraft emissions and not airport operations but we do acknowledge that we are an enabler of these flights and we are committed to attract airlines operating newer, greener jets, that carry more passengers per movement.
“Our masterplan outlines how we can provide better global connectivity for the region and create thousands of more jobs for local people, whilst making full use of its single runway within the existing airport boundary.
“Whilst we estimate a 40 per cent rise in passengers by 2033, the number of annual aircraft movements are only expected to grow by 21 per cent over the next 15 years.”
The airport is presenting its masterplan to the public in a series of exhibitions across the region in the coming months.
West Midlands mayor Andy Street said: “Environmental considerations are very important in the debate about the future of Birmingham Airport, that’s why I was very clear in the Mayoral election that I completely opposed a second runway – despite others calling for it.
“The airport has set out a range of mitigations as part of its plan including reducing taxiing and better use of technology.
“By using the local airport it will also reduce the need to travel to other airports.
“And Birmingham Airport will have exceptional public transport access, including HS2.
“However, we have to reflect on the critical role the airport has in our future economic growth and providing jobs directly and as a catalyst for the regional economy.
“We need more routes to key commercial partners like India and we have to recognise that we are competing with other places for investments and jobs and having an improved airport is a key part of winning these jobs.”
At the Climate Change march in London on 1st December, to mark the start of the COP24 climate talks in Katovice, Poland, the No 3rd Runway Coalition was out in force. Many hundred people marched – 700 or more? – with a large input from anti-fracking activists, and many from Extinction Rebelling. After rallying outside the Polish Embassy for speeches, including Neil Keveren from Stop Heathrow Expansion, the march set off down Regents Street and Piccadilly to Whitehall. The key concern was that in the UK, from fracking to a Heathrow third runway, our government is failing to face up to the climate crisis. The recent IPCC report is a landmark for our planet, setting out just what is at stake if we breach 1.5C warming. We need action now to move to a Zero Carbon Britain, with climate jobs to build the future we need. Instead of rapidly committing to effective action to cut CO2, the UK government is actively backing measures to make CO2 emissions higher or cut funding for initiatives that would cut burning of fossil fuels. The No 3rd Runway Coalition banner took up pride of place at the start of the march. There were many Coalition members present, many placards on show, the huge Chatr black plane clearly stating “No 3rd Runway”, and a good turnout by Stop Heathrow Expansion.
No 3rd Runway Coalition presence at the London Climate March
Heatwaves, hurricanes and wildfires make it clear: it’s time to act on climate change. As crucial UN climate talks kick off in kick off in Katowice, Poland, join us to show solidarity with environmental activists there; with those in the Global South in particular in the frontline of climate change; and with all those standing up for the future of our planet over short-term profit, against the rise of the far right and climate denial.
Here in the UK, from fracking to a Heathrow third runway, our government is failing to face up to the climate crisis. The recent IPCC report is a landmark for our planet, setting out just what is at stake if we breach 1.5C warming. We need action now to move to a Zero Carbon Britain, with climate jobs to build the future we need.
The march sent a message to activists in Katowice, marching on 8 December
The march assembled from 12 noon outsider the Polish Embassy on Portland Place. There was a rally with speeches from 12.30 to 1.30pm. There were speeches by:
Clive Lewis MP, Labour Party
Sian Berry, co-leader, Green Party
Richard Roberts, fracking direct action campaigner whose recent prison sentence was overturned
Paul Allen, Zero Carbon Britain
Beatriz Ratton, Brazilian Women Against Fascism
Nita Sanghera, Vice President, UCU
Asad Rehman, War on Want
Anna Gretton, Extinction Rebellion
Neil Keveren, No 3rd Runway Coalition
The rally chanted in Polish, “Razem dla Klimatu” – outside the Polish Embassy. It means “Together for Climate”.
The No 3rd Runway Coalition banner took up pride of place at the start of the march. There were many Coalition members present, many placards on show, the huge Chatr black plane clearly stating “No 3rd Runway”, and a good turnout by Stop Heathrow Expansion. Sadly the huge model plane, made by the irrepressible Neil Keveren, had a bit of a mishap during the pouring rain all morning …. but will be fixed and will makes its debut appearance at another event soon …
The march then set off, down Regents Street, Piccadilly and Trafalgar Square to Whitehall. Police held up the traffic for the marchers to pass, and shoppers watched with interest (taking thousands of photos and videos) as the marchers streamed past. There were chants, while going past the BBC in Portland Place, of “BBC, BBC, tell the truth about climate change”. Also chants of “What do we want? Climate Action. When do we want it? Now. What do we want? Climate Justice. When do we want it? Now”.
And also many times: “No ifs, no buts – No 3rd Runway”.
Some shoppers abandoned their shopping to join the march for a while. Some car drivers honked their horns in support as the march passed.
The Extinction Rebellion activists were there in force, but there was no direct action and absolutely no breaking of any laws or civil disobedience.
At the rally in Whitehall, opposite Downing Street, there were speeches by
Barry Gardiner MP, Labour Party
Liz Hutchins, Friends of the Earth
Peter Allen, Frack Free United
Claire James, Campaign against Climate Change
After the protest, the Frack Free United Declaration against fracking was handed in, to 10 Downing Street.