Cheap flights comic show ready for West End take-off

Fascinsting Aida will be touring with their new show, “Cheap Flights” – in London from 8th December to 7th January. If you have not yet heard the song, catch it on YouTube even if you can’t get to the show.

24.11.2011 (Evening Standard)

Cheap flights

A musical diatribe on the nightmare of budget travel has propelled veteran comedy trio Fascinating Aïda to new heights.

Cheap Flights, which lambasts the likes of Ryanair, has had 7.75 million hits since it was posted on YouTube last year. And the burst of publicity means the group are now enjoying their fastest selling tour in nearly three decades.

Next month they embark on their first major London season since 2003, at the Charing Cross Theatre. But producer David Johnson, from Kentish Town, said he could have sold out the Palladium. “They have always done well but this is something else.”

He has no doubts the song is the key. “You only have to listen to the song to realise that everybody has been there.”

Dillie Keane, 59, who lives in London and Oxfordshire, founded the company 28 years ago.

She said: “It’s rather delightful and of course it’s gratifying. It’s gone a bit crazy.”

She said she had a hunch it could be a hit from the moment she first performed the lyrics: “Cheap flights, cheap flights, we should have gone by sea. There’s no such thing as fecking flights for 50p.”

“I did it at a couple of parties and got this extraordinary reaction,” she said.

So she sank money into a DVD and posted the track online. The public loved it. “It went fungal,” she joked.

The consequence is a whole new audience for Keane and her colleagues Adele Anderson and newcomer Sarah-Louise Young who were described by one critic this year as “sharp enough to be considered a dangerous weapon”.

“Our audience was getting old. But since the song the audience is getting younger with people in their twenties and thirties and students,” she said. I’m afraid I’m going to be doing it for the rest of my life now.”

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-24013593-cheap-flights-the-musical-ready-for-west-end-take-off.do

 

Fascinating Aida – Cheap Flights – on YouTube

 

Charing  Cross Theatre  http://www.charingcrosstheatre.co.uk/

Fascinating Aida tour dates  http://www.fascinatingaida.co.uk/tour_dates

Read more »

Runway invasion at Southend airport by Plane Stupid and Climate Rush

15 activists from Plane Stupid, and Climate Rush, entered Southend airport at
9am, got onto the runway, and stayed there for over an hour, before being arrested.
They did a dance routine dressed as pilots and cabin crew, and planned to put
up some solar panels.  The protest was against the planned increase in flights
from Southend in 2012, and the planned 300 metre runway extension. Protestors
said the expansion will not create as many jobs as could be created by building
renewable energy instead – saying “we need solar power, not plane power.”
 
The protestors were released on bail at 1am on Sunday 30th October until 30th
November. One condition of their bail is that they will not “consort”.  See BBC
article below (30.10.2011)
 


Southend Airport runway protesters arrested

Fifteen climate change activists have been arrested at London Southend Airport.

Members of Plane Stupid and Climate Rush entered the airport at 09:00 BST and
were apprehended by officers.

In a press release, the groups said they planned to put solar panels on the runway
and do a dance routine dressed as pilots and cabin crew.

Police initially said 16 people were in custody, but at 15:00 BST confirmed five
men and 10 women were detained.

The airport wants to extend its runway by 300m (984ft) to allow larger passenger
aircraft to be used.
 
Public Footpath crosses taxi way. The site at which the protesters allegedly
entered the airport – the zebra crossing over an airport taxiway on Footpath
36.
 
 
‘Solar power’

The Stobart Group, which owns the airport, aims to have two million passengers
a year passing through its terminal, by 2020.

In a statement before the arrests, a spokeswoman for the protesters said: “Southend
Council say the expansion will bring jobs.

“But investment in renewable energy would create many more jobs without damaging
the climate.

“What we need is solar power, not plane power.

“The bigger runway is bad for climate change, bad for local residents under the
flight path and is not needed to help the local economy.”

Using Twitter, Plane Stupid said members had invaded the runway at 09:00 BST
and remained there “for at least an hour”.

Essex Police said officers responded quickly to reports of protesters gaining
access to Southend Airport shortly after the protesters broke in.

View from Footpath 36 towards the runway at Southend Airport
View from Footpath 36 towards the runway at Southend Airport,
where it is understood the protest took place
 
Flights ‘unaffected’

All 15 suspects are being held on suspicion of entering a restricted zone at
an airport and aggravated trespass.

A 20-year-old man and a 19 year-old woman from Norwich and a 43 year-old man
from Whitstable in Kent are among those arrested.

The remainder are from various parts of London.

Det Ch Insp Stuart Hooper said: “We were on heightened general alert to airports
and our response to the protest was very swift.

“We have a number of well-rehearsed contingency plans for events such as this
and we have launched a criminal investigation following the incident at Southend.”

An airport spokeswoman confirmed the runway had been closed for a “short period”
while police dealt wth the situation.

“No flights were impacted by this event,” she said.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-15505319

Climate Rush website: http://www.climaterush.co.uk/ 

 
This is the response from the local group at Southend, SAEN:

SAEN grateful to Plane Stupid protesters

SAEN[1] has learned, via a call from the local press, that 16 people were arrested
at Southend Airport this morning for protesting against the airport’s expansion.

The direct action group Plane Stupid has claimed credit for the protest alongside
Suffragette-inspired campaigners Climate Rush.[2] Further information about the
incident is available from the Press Association[3] and BBC News[4].

SAEN was unaware of today’s protest, but has been opposing the runway extension
at Southend Airport and associated development ever since the summer of 2008 when
Southend Borough Council and Rochford District Council launched a Joint Area Action
Plan (JAAP) to determine planning policy for the airport and its environs.

Initially, four options were on the table – low growth, two medium growth variants
and high growth. The majority opposed “Scenario 3″[5], which was the high growth
option, but it was this proposal that was taken forward and phase 2 of consultation
was on this high growth plan, which included an extension to the runway to allow
larger planes to use the airport. Again, the overwhelming majority objected[6].
By this time, Stobart had bought the airport and were developing a planning application
for the runway extension.

The application was submitted in October 2009, at which point the JAAP was put
on ice, denying the public an Examination in Public of the planning policy before
it was adopted. Despite overwhelming opposition, the application was waved through
by Southend Council’s development control committee in January 2010. SAEN was
hopeful at this stage that the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government,
John Denham (a former Friends of the Earth transport campaigner), would grant
a public inquiry into the decision, but it was not to be. The group then spent
over a year and tens of thousands of pounds pursuing permission for a Judicial
Review, which has now been refused.

It is therefore entirely understandable that protesters would take direct action
to protest against this unjust scheme and SAEN is grateful to the protesters for
showing solidarity with the local community.

SAEN Spokesman, Denis Walker, said: “The town is being blighted by the closure
of Eastwoodbury Lane, the demolition of six homes and the threat of thousands
of flights a month, but we’re getting nothing in return but more noise and more
traffic. Regional airports take money out of the local economy as people go abroad
to spend and while there will be a few jobs they never match the numbers the developers
claim. The town has been double-crossed and councillors should be ashamed.”

  1. “Stop Airport Extension Now” (SAEN) was formed to campaign against the runway
    extension at Southend Airport. The group is not opposed to the Airport itself,
    which has co-existed with the residents of Southend for many years. SAEN is against
    the runway extension, which would lead to a massive increase in flights and destroy
    the lives of the people living, working or going to school anywhere near the flightpath.
  2. http://twitter.com/#!/planestupid  and http://twitter.com/#!/ClimateRush
  3. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5jSJ0PtpT3Ot13P5nKU_5vVfrlTZA?docId=N0343301319879438537A
  4. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-15505319
  5. http://www.saen.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/JAAP_issues_and_options_summary_consultation_response.pdf  (see p15)
  6. http://www.saen.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Resp-to-JAAP-POR-Final-Version.pdf  (see p4)

 

Southend Airport: Sixteen Arrested After Activists Walk On Runway


Southend

29/10/11 11:10  (Press Association)

 Sixteen people have been arrested after a protest at an airport, police said.

Activists went on to the runway at Southend Airport in Essex shortly after 9am
on Saturday.

A spokeswoman for Essex Police said: “Sixteen people gained entry to Southend
Airport. We were deployed very quickly and have arrested them all, and they are
in custody.”

Some managed to get on to the runway, she added.

Campaigners said the demonstration was against the planned expansion of the airport.

A spokeswoman for the protesters said: “Southend Council say the expansion will
bring jobs. But investment in renewable energy would create many more jobs without
damaging the climate. What we need is solar power not plane power.

“The bigger runway is bad for climate change, bad for local residents under the
flight path and is not needed to help the local economy.”

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2011/10/29/southend-airport-sixteen-_n_1064977.html?1319883348

 

 

Protestors On Runway At Southend Airport

Essex Police say 16 people have been arrested after protestors gained access
to Southend Airport.

Officers were called shortly after 9am today (Saturday 29 October) after some
managed to get on to the runway.

A spokeswoman for Essex Police said: “Sixteen people gained entry to Southend
Airport. We were deployed very quickly and have arrested them all, and they are
in custody.”

Campaigners said the demonstration was against the planned expansion of the airport.

A spokeswoman for the protesters said: “Southend Council say the expansion will
bring jobs. But investment in renewable energy would create many more jobs without
damaging the climate. What we need is solar power not plane power.

“The bigger runway is bad for climate change, bad for local residents under the
flight path and is not needed to help the local economy.”

Southend Airport has issued the following statement: “Essex police were called
to London Southend airport following a report of suspicious activity at the airport
perimeter.

“Police swiftly dealt with a breach in the airport perimeter and a number of
people were arrested.

“The runway was closed for a short period whilst the police responded but no
flights were impacted by this event.”

http://www.heart.co.uk/essex/news/local/protestors-storm-runway-southend-airport/

 

16 arrested after airport protest   [15, not 16]

Sixteen people have been arrested after a protest at an airport, police said.

Activists went on to the runway at Southend Airport in Essex shortly after 9am
on Saturday.

A spokeswoman for Essex Police said: “Sixteen people gained entry to Southend
Airport. We were deployed very quickly and have arrested them all, and they are
in custody.”

Some managed to get on to the runway, she added.

Campaigners said the demonstration was against the planned expansion of the airport.

A spokeswoman for the protesters said: “Southend Council say the expansion will
bring jobs. But investment in renewable energy would create many more jobs without
damaging the climate. What we need is solar power not plane power.

“The bigger runway is bad for climate change, bad for local residents under the
flight path and is not needed to help the local economy.”

A spokeswoman for the airport said later: “Earlier this morning Essex Police
were called to London Southend Airport following a report of suspicious activity
at the airport perimeter.

“Police swiftly dealt with a breach in the airport perimeter and a number of
people were arrested.

“The runway was closed for a short period whilst the police responded. No flights
were impacted by this event.”

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5jSJ0PtpT3Ot13P5nKU_5vVfrlTZA?docId=N0343301319879438537A

 
 
 
Fifteen climate change activists arrested at London Southend Airport have been
released on bail.

Members of Plane Stupid and Climate Rush entered the airport at 09:00 BST on
Saturday and were arrested by Essex police officers.

They had planned to put solar panels on the runway and perform a dance routine
dressed as pilots and cabin crew.

The five men and 10 women have been released on police bail until 30 November.

They were being held on suspicion of entering a restricted zone at an airport
and aggravated trespass.

‘Solar power needed’

The airport wants to extend its runway by 300m (984ft) to allow larger passenger
aircraft to be used.

The Stobart Group, which owns the airport, aims to have two million passengers
a year passing through its terminal, by 2020.

In a statement before the arrests, a spokeswoman for the protesters said: “Southend
Council say the expansion will bring jobs.

“But investment in renewable energy would create many more jobs without damaging
the climate.

“What we need is solar power, not plane power.”

An airport spokeswoman said the runway had been closed for a “short period” while
police dealt with the situation but no flights had been affected.
 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-essex-15511754
 

Related BBC Stories

 
This is how the Crown Prosecution Service defines Aggravated Trespass – of which
the Southend activists are accused:
http://www.cps.gov.uk/legal/s_to_u/trespass_and_nuisance_on_land/

Read more »

Dan Glass – the “super-glue airport expansion fighter” – goes down well in Toronto

Dan Glass — the UK climate activist who super-glued himself to Gordon Brown —
has been catapulted into the Canadian spotlight after being barred from speaking
in the US by the FBI. Dan, with many others, was central to the successful campaign
to halt a Heathrow 3rd runway. Dan spoke to a receptive gathering of anti-airport
activists in Toronto, who are fighting the long-proposed Pickering airport, sharing
details of strategies that worked so well.


Super-Glue airport-expansion fighter arrives

21.10.2011 (The Bulletin, DownTown Toronto)

Climate activist successfully fought Heathrow airport expansion in U.K. and has
tips for those battling against Island airport domination of Downtown’s air space

By Brian Iler

http://www.communityair.org/

 

 

Dan Glass — most famous as the UK climate activist who super-glued himself to British PM
Gordon Brown — has recently been catapulted into the spotlight after being barred
from speaking in the US by the FBI. Glass, with many others, was central to the
UK’s impressively successful campaign to halt a proposed third runway at Heathrow
Airport.

Glass spoke to a gathering of anti-airport activists in Toronto Oct. 20, including
representatives from Land over Landings, the community group fighting the long-proposed
Pickering airport. What they learned from the immensely successful campaign to
stop Heathrow expansion,  will help them to halt the expansion of Toronto Island
airport, and begin reducing the impact aviation has on our environment.

Citizen group CommunityAIR invited Glass to share the strategies that worked
so well for the Heathrow campaign.  The strategies ranged from lobbying to building
coalitions to civil disobedience. The result: stronger ties with our friends in
the UK, and renewed determination.

The task of finding much more sustainable ways to live and travel is an urgent
one in this rapidly warming world. The Toronto Island airport is exclusively devoted
to short-haul flights – the worst emitters of greenhouse gases, and the most readily
substituted with greener alternatives. Our work here on aviation issues is vastly
enriched by the knowledge and experience our friends in the United Kingdom are
so keen to share.”

This event marks the launch of Glass’s tour of community and activist efforts
across Canada.  Touring with U.S. activist Holly Jones, they are focused on exploring,
documenting and disseminating social and environmental justice efforts in Canada
for British, American and Canadian audiences. The tour will continue through Vancouver,
Edmonton and Athabasca.

In the face of relentless expansion of commercial flights out of the Toronto
Island Airport, CommunityAIR organizers are fighting to protect Toronto’s waterfront
from further devastating pollution. 12,000,000 people enjoy the waterfront and
the parks of the Toronto Islands annually.

Iler is chairman of CommunityAIR. 

biler@ilercampbell.com 

http://www.thebulletin.ca/cbulletin/content.jsp?ctid=1000006&cnid=1002917

Read more »

The only way to fry? First commercial British flight fuelled by used chip fat is met by naked protesters

In response to the Thomson biofuel flight, using 50% used cooking oil in one
engine, three Plane Stupid activists staged a naked protest – showing that biofuels
are not green, and the Thomson PR exercise is bare faced cheek. Thomson intends,
after a 6 week gap, to have many more biofuel flights in 2012. They hope to use
used cooking oil, but the airline may have to use other fuels, as it is not likely
to get enough of the oil – which is already much in demand.

7.10.2011  (Daily Mail)
Not red faced: Protesters from Plane Stupid at Birmingham airport protesting against the UK's first commercial flight using biofuel because of the damage it does to the rainforest

Not red faced: Protesters from Plane Stupid at Birmingham airport protesting
against the UK’s first commercial flight using biofuel because of the damage it
does to the rainforest

– Plane flew from Birmingham airport to Lanzarote

– ‘Biofuel production killing rainforests,’ say protesters

By Gavin Allen

A planeload of British holidaymakers have made aviation history by flying to
Lanzarote on a plane fuelled by used chip pan oil.

The Thomson Airways flight from Birmingham airport was the first UK commercial
biofuels flight ever from a UK airport.

One of the engines on the twin- engined Boeing 757 flight was operated on a 50%
blend of ‘Hydroprocessed Esters and Fatty Acids’, produced from used cooking oil,
and 50% Jet A1 fuel.
You're not under a vest: A Plane Stupid protester is led away by police after the scenes at Birmingham Airport

You’re not under a vest: A Plane Stupid protester is led away by police after
the scenes at Birmingham airport

But environmental protesters stripped naked and covered themselves in red body
paint in a bid to disrupt the launch.

Calling themselves Plane Stupid they said that rainforests were being wrecked
to make way for biofuel plantations.

The cooking oil used for the Thomson flights is collected from the kitchens of
hotels and restaurants and then goes through a special processing treatment.

Carl Gissing, director of customer service at Thomson Airways, admitted that
the biofuel cost around five to six times the price of aviation fuel, but said
the airline was prepared to ‘put its money where our mouth is’ because it believed
in sustainable biofuels.

Mr Gissing said: ‘We are proud to be leading the way with the first commercial
biofuel flights and we hope it will make people sit up and take notice.’

Mr Gissing said the move was designed to make a statement which it was hoped
would lead to industry and governments investing in developing fuels which would
reduce carbon emissions.

After today’s light, carrying 232 passengers, there will be a six-week gap before
Thomson starts a full programme of biofuel flights in 2012 from Birmingham Airport.

Dirk Konemeijer, managing director of skyNRG, which supplies the biofuel, said
it made sense to utilise used cooking oil because it was a waste product which
couldn’t be used for anything else.  [This is untrue]

It was not economically viable at present to supply the whole of the aviation
industry with the fuel and that was why government support was needed.  [The aviation industry is, yet again, asking for subsidy from the public purse
– and this time it is for a misguided idea that does not achieve its stated ambitions,
and is very environmentally and socially damaging].

Long-term other technology was necessary and in three to four years a totally
new fuel could come along. [Cloud cuckoo land again.  Where is this magic substance to come from? Why should
anyone believe some remarkable chemical miracle is going to present itself?]

Joe Peacock, from Birmingham Friends of the Earth, however, said: ‘We cannot ignore the massive environmental and social problems
caused by trying to feed our addiction to fossil fuels with plant-based alternatives.’

Plane Stupid protester Chris Cooper said: ‘Thomson seem to be acknowledging that
we can’t continue business as usual in the face of the current climate emergency.

‘It’s a shame their solution is to make matters worse.

‘Vast tracts of rainforest, eco systems vital to halting climate change, are
currently being trashed to make way for biofuel plantations.

‘Land that grows food is being stolen from some of the world’s poorest people
so that it can start feeding planes. It’s a disaster.’
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2046465/First-commercial-British-flight-fueled-used-chip-fat-met-naked-protesters.html

 

 

Read more »

John Stewart, UK’s “most effective environmentalist” barred from entering US



On September 29, Stewart, who does not have a criminal record and meets the requirements
for the US Visa Waiver program, had his visa waiver rescinded mid-flight. He was
questioned by the FBI, the Secret Service, and immigration for six hours at New
York’s JFK Airport before being put back on a plane to London.

American environmental campaigners had planned a month-long speaking tour for Stewart, set to begin on October 1. Stewart had been instrumental in the
campaign to stop a third runway at London’s Heathrow Airport. He had chaired the diverse coalition of neighbors, environmental activists,
fiscal conservatives, and local politicians which persuaded the Conservative government
to scrap plans for a new runway. In 2008 the Independent on Sunday voted Stewart “
the UK’s most effective green activist.”

Environmentalist Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org, says that barring a community organizer from entering the
U.S. is a dangerous statement. He continued, “We need more voices, not fewer,
explaining the dangers of climate change and the rational responses we must make.
And though it’s a backhanded testament to John Stewart’s effectiveness, this is
sad news for all of us hoping to hear what he had to say.”

Stewart said, “What seemed to concern them was that I would be discussing, as
part of my talk, the role that peaceful, non-violent civil disobedience played
in the Heathrow Campaign. I wouldn’t be able to explain the campaign without doing
so. In any case, it is completely legitimate to discuss the role of an activity
which has featured so heavily in so many historical campaigns, from the American
Civil Rights Movement, to the Suffragettes’ fight for the right of women to vote
in the UK.”

Stewart has also won support from across Europe and the UK. Earlier today, Conservative
member of the British Parliament
Zac Goldsmith tweeted: “Heathrow campaigner, John Stewart barred from US. A heroic campaigner, and
a gent. Utterly scandalous.”

U.S. organizers have spent over a year planning the month-long national lecture
tour on aviation and the environment, and are shocked and embarrassed at their
government’s actions. Another invited speaker, award-winning Scottish climate
activist Dan Glass, was effectively blocked from participating because his visa
application was delayed indefinitely due to special “administrative processing.”

“John Stewart is a mainstream environmentalist who we invited because of his
ability to work with everybody, and for his role in helping
influence people like British Prime Minister David Cameron to choose bold green solutions,” says Barnali Ghosh, a San Francisco tour organizer.
“Americans needs to hear from more centrists who can build left-right coalitions.”
Seattle organizer
Debi Wagner asks why Stewart’s visa was rescinded mid-flight. “Barring environmentalists
won’t make us any safer or healthier.”

New York organizer Dr. Frans Verhagen is outraged, but affirms that the tour will go ahead. “We will use videoconferencing to ensure that John Stewart and Dan Glass can
still address our meetings. Our lecture tour still begins in New York tomorrow,
as planned.”

 

Details of the tour can be found at http://aviationjustice.org/tour/

 

The Aviation Justice Express is a coalition of airport watchdog, climate action,
and sustainable transportation groups and activists. Endorsers include 350.org,
US Citizens Aviation Watch, Concerned Residents Against Airport Pollution, Sane
Aviation for Everyone, Shut This Airport Nightmare Down, All Aboard Washington,
AirportWatch, So We Stand, and Left Field Films.

http://aviationjustice.org/2011/09/30/john-stewart-barred-from-us/#comment-119

 

Some comments:

It is a huge compliment to Dan and John that the US government is so terrified
of them and their viewpoint that it bans them from speaking physically to people
in the USA. It just shows how repressive the US government is and how Obama has
done nothing to change that.

I have spoken to both, particularly Dan, but wouldn’t claim to know either well.
However, I do know both well enough to know that they are no danger to the people
of the USA. If they were then that might justify the bans. They are certainly
a danger to vested interests in the US, which is why Obama’s government has banned
them.

The land of the free? Round objects.

Be careful that Obama doesn’t interfere with telecommunications, so preventing
people in the USA from hearing Dan and John.

 

===============

 I find it upsetting that a community organizer with no criminal record can be
stopped at the border and turned back.

==============

 Whatever the intentions of the authorities, their actions will certainly backfire
on them. Stewart’s work is now getting more attention than ever here in the U.S.

=================

By refusing John entry into the US the police have done more to highlight ‘airport
expansion’ and fuel direct action than possibly John could have done.  Well done
USA  – you mucked up again !
Smacks of Climate Camp Heathrow. The media attention because of the police action
made the campaign Global.
Well done John and you didn’t even have to go all that way.
 
=================
 
The campaigns to highlight the problem of aviation expansion are important, because
globally the industry continues to have crazy growth plans.  Other sectors have
to cut back their emissions, but aviation intends to keep on increasing the number
of flights and passengers, ad infinitum. At huge environmental cost. Now kerosene
is getting more expensive, they plan to use biofuels.  This has immense and worrying
implications for all of us, and the campaigners are doing the US a public service
in waking them out of their slumber, to sit up and take notice of the problems
they are sleepwalking into.  The US government and the , American people, should
be very grateful for the wake up call that this US speaking tour will provide.
 
 
================
 

On Twitter:

 
Some of the many tweets on the story:
 
Conservative  MP Zac Goldsmith: “Heathrow campaigner, John Stewart barred from
US. A heroic campaigner, and a gent. Utterly scandalous.”
 
Christian Wolmar:  “Shocking that long time transport & aviation campaigner John Stewart has
been barred from USA & put back on plane after 6 hours questioning”
 
RossLydall:  “Heathrow campaigner John Stewart: no criminal record, no direct action but quizzed
for 7 hours by FBI and customs and booted out of country”.
 

RichardHebditch:  “Our trustee John Stewart has been refused entry to US for his speaking tour on
aviation campaigning:
 “
 
Joss Garman:  “Crazy that a man known here as one of our most influential enviro campaigners,
with no convictions, turned back from ‘land of the free’ “
 
and lots more at
 
================
 
 
 

 

see also
 

John Stewart refused entry to USA for speaking tour, due to visa problem

Date Added: 30th September 2011

John Stewart, Chair of both AirportWatch and HACAN, was taken off the plane on
which he had travelled to JFK.  John, who does not have a criminal record and
meets the requirements for the US Visa Waiver program, had his visa waiver rescinded
mid-flight.  He was questioned by the FBI, the Secret Service, and immigration
for six hours at New York’s JFK Airport before being put back on a plane to London.
His treatment at the hands of the US authorities appears to be both harsh and
unreasonable.  The purpose of his visit was a one month speaking tour.
Click here to view full story…

Read more »

John Stewart refused entry to USA for speaking tour, due to visa problem

John Stewart, Chair of both AirportWatch and HACAN, was taken off the plane on
which he had travelled to JFK.  John, who does not have a criminal record and
meets the requirements for the US Visa Waiver program, had his visa waiver rescinded
mid-flight.  He was questioned by the FBI, the Secret Service, and immigration
for six hours at New York’s JFK Airport before being put back on a plane to London.
His treatment at the hands of the US authorities appears to be both harsh and
unreasonable.  The purpose of his visit was a one month speaking tour.
 

 

Below is one of the first stories to appear in the media about this.

Third runway protester escorted off plane and barred from America

30.9.2011 (Evening Standard)

 
An activist who campaigns against airport expansion has been barred from entering
America.

John Stewart was escorted off a plane by armed guards when it landed in New York yesterday and sent back to London on the next available flight.

Mr Stewart, 62, who heads the anti-airport expansion protest group HACAN and
who led the campaign against the third runway at
Heathrow airport, was believed to have fallen foul of the US’s strict visa entry requirements
because he planned to spend a month travelling across the country campaigning.

One of his fellow HACAN activists, Monica Robb, told the Standard: “It’s scandalous.
I suspect it’s because he’s a campaigner. They are paranoid.

“I don’t think he’s got any criminal convictions, he is not that sort of a person.
He is a very mild-mannered person, but very persistent.”

Mr Stewart, who lives in Clapham, has led the campaign against the expansion
of Heathrow since the Nineties. He was due to land at Heathrow today.

He flew out yesterday on a KLM flight and is thought to have attempted to enter the US via its visa waiver
programme, which permits UK citizens to enter the States for up to 90 days for
“business or pleasure”.

He sent an email to supporters overnight, confirming his ban on entering the
country. It read: “Refused entry to US. Put on plane back to UK. Back Friday morning.”

He was to have been joined by activist Dan Glass, a self-confessed “freedom fighter”
who belongs to the
Plane Stupid Scotland campaign group. However, Mr Glass did not travel because he has a criminal conviction
for breach of the peace.

Mr Glass said there were 3,400 airport construction and development projects
planned across the US that “make the Heathrow third runway campaign look like
a walk in the park”.

Prior to departing for the US, Mr Stewart had denied charges of hypocrisy, not
only for taking a long-haul flight, but for using Heathrow. He said the protest
against expansion plans at the airport – cancelled by the Government – had been
primarily against short-haul flights to Europe.

“I don’t feel it is hypocritical. I feel comfortable about it,” he told the Daily
Mail. He added: “There would be a lot of hypocrisy if I were flying to
Frankfurt.”

He had planned to address activists in Chicago, California and Seattle. He said: “They are keen to hear about our success, particularly how residents
linked up with environmental groups.”

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/standard/article-23992996-third-runway-protester-escorted-off-plane-and-barred-from-america.do
The organization that organized John Stewart’s American tour, Aviation Justice
http://aviationjustice.org/  issued a press release with the following statement:

On September 29, Stewart, who does not have a criminal record and meets the requirements
for the US Visa Waiver program, had his visa waiver rescinded mid-flight. He was
questioned by the FBI, the Secret Service, and immigration for six hours at New
York’s JFK Airport before being put back on a plane to London…Environmentalist
Bill McKibben, founder of 350.org, says that barring a community organizer from
entering the U.S. is a dangerous statement. He continued, “We need more voices,
not fewer, explaining the dangers of climate change and the rational responses
we must make. And though it’s a backhanded testament to John Stewart’s effectiveness,
this is sad news for all of us hoping to hear what he had to say.”
 
 
There are some very odd, and completely false, stories on Fox News that suggest
John made some threat against President Obama, and in some way is a danger to
the US state.  This, of course, is complete nonsense. The FBI immediately said
there had never been any threat.  Fox News is a truly appalling, anti environment
and alarmist news service, and we are truly fortunate not to have it in the UK.
 
 
 
see also

 

John Stewart, UK’s “most effective environmentalist” barred from entering US

Date Added: 1st October 2011

Environmentalists from across the US and Europe are surprised and outraged that
John Stewart, voted the UK’s most effective environmentalist, was questionned
for 6 hours and barred from entering the US. John was invited to the US by a coalition
of environmental organisations for a one month speaking tour, but was turned back
at JFK airport. John, who does not have a criminal record and meets the requirements
for the US Visa Waiver program, had his visa waiver rescinded mid-flight. The
tour will go ahead, but using videoconferencing so John and Dan Glass can speak
at the meetings as planned.

Click here to view full story…

Read more »

French campaigners against a huge new airport at Nantes to hold rally for cycles and tractors in Paris on 12th November


 
The campaigners against the building of a new airport outside Nantes in South
West France will be travelling by bicycle and tractor to Paris – leaving Nantes
on 6th November and arriving in Paris on 12th November where there will be a big
rally. 

Campaigners from other countries are invited to join them on the cycle ride or
for the rally in Paris.  

Details in French at http://tractovelo-ndl-2011.blogspot.com/ 

This is the biggest campaign against airport expansion in Europe.  It is possible
that the campaigners can win. 

John Stewart, who lead the campaign against at third runway at Heathrow said: 
“We hope that campaigners from all over Europe can join them for the rally in
Paris.  Let’s make this an international rally against airport expansion.   We
stopped a new runway at Heathrow.  If we can stop a new airport in France as well,
it will make it more and more difficult for the aviation industry to expand anywhere
in Europe.  Join us!”


Everyone in Paris on November 12 for the arrival of the Tractor-Bike  (Approximate
translation from French)

The coordination of the opponents of the proposed new airport at Notre-Dame-des-Landes
(NDL), near Nantes will be travelling to Paris by tractors and bicycles, starting
on Sunday 6 to Saturday, and arriving in Paris on 12th November 2011.  This is
to challenge national French decision-makers, and influence negotiations between
parties that are sure to occur for the 2012 Presidential.  Campaigners will denounce
once more the aberration of the project on the grounds of financial conditions,
economic, social and environmental harm. We will leave Notre Dame des-Landes Sunday,
November 6th at 9 am.  We pass by Cande and Sable, near Le Mans, Chartres and
Versailles, Boulogne and finally arrive in Paris on Saturday, November 12th at
noon. We will have traveled 400 km, so this means travelling a long distance each
day.  This bike ride is a continuation of the rally  held earlier, the
three days of resistance to Notre-Dame-des-Landes 8, 9 and 10 July 2011 and the Regional backhoe bike in March 2010 .

 


The website, translated (approximately) into English says:

What is the Notre-Dame-des-Landes ?

Close to Nantes, in Notre Dame of the Moors, a gigantic airport project threatens
2000 ha of arable lands of the woodlands that have exceptional biodiversity. The
project dates from the Sixties, for Concorde, and the reasons given for need for
its construction changed much with the passing of years and against arguments
of the opponents.

Today, in fact there is no problem of saturation nor of safety at the current
airport of the Nantes-Atlantic and that the context does not support the growth
of the air travel sector. But the State with the support of the town councilors
and regional PS and UMP allotted construction and the concession for 55 years
of this airport to the Vinci group.

€360 million minimum of public investment would be cost of the new airport. Paradoxically,
the need for this new construction is not proven and no improvement or  expansion of
the existing airport was studied…

In spite of a strong opposition and demonstrations of the anomaly of this airport
building project, the necessary environmental, archaeological, etc, studies take
place with deployment of troops  an increasing police violence.

Since October 2008, each day, two people are stationed permanently in front of
places of symbolic Nantes imrportance, to denounce the arable land being lost
and public money that would be wasted.

This is an operation by Citoyens Vigilants (Vigilant Citizens). 

Farmers want to be able to continue to live and to work on the zone envisaged
for this project and the inhabitants (old and new) want to continue to live there.

A collective of elected officials opposed to the project was created in June
2009. It currently joins together nearly 1000 elected various political families,
who will be in Paris on arrival of the participants in the tracto-bicycle. A collective
of airline pilots also accompanies us in our combat.

A project emblematic and useless

• Destruction of 2000 hectares arable lands when it is urgent that we develop
a locally-based agriculture of high quality, helping towards food sovereignty

• Economic uselessness: the ” bet on the future” announced by the supporters
of the project and carried by the faith in a productivism worthy of the Seventies,
but the current international airport of Nantes Atlantique is able to meet the
present and future needs

• Aberration of ” hope” of growth of air transport in contradiction with the increasing
scarcity of oil resources and the necessary reduction in production of greenhouse
gases

 • Destruction of employment

• Public money wasted to the detriment of current spending priorities such as
schools, creches, hospitals, public transport…

• Refusal by the elected local and regional officials of the PS and UMP to properly
consider alternative solutions recommended by associations

More than one hundred celebrities, a strong coordination of more than 40 associations,
collectives and political movements, representing several tens of thousands of
people, called at 3 days of gathering on the threatened site, on July 8th to 10th,
2011, around the topics Climat/Énergies, arable Lands/Food sovereignty and Social
justice, a gathering at which nearly 15.000 people joined together to fight against
this project – which has became national, even European, issue.

At the time of these three days the it was decided to take the protest to Paris. 
Plans have been made for a regional tour in November with tractors and the bicycles,
like the one which had taken place in March 2010 the day before the regional elections.

More information on Nantes Airport

Read more »

Protest against military aviation at Fairford Air Tattoo

Protesters arrive at the Fairford Air Tattoo

Kevin Lister 

16.07.2011  (Indymedia)

Protesters pitched up at the gates to the Fairford Air Tattoo today as part of
a weekends protest against an event that glorifies war and corporate excess and
are set to distribute tens of thousands of leaflets.

The protests have targeted the enormous greenhouse gas emissions from the event
and how it negates the efforts that thousands of other responsible citizens are
making across Gloucestershire to cut their own carbon footprint.

They have also protested against the presence of the American A-10 ground attack
plane that was on display. The A-10 is designed specifically to fire depleted
uranium shells. This has resulted in thousands of deformed babies being born across
Iraq along with a massive risk in childhood cancers. A-10 have also been deployed
in Libya.

The use of depleted uranium is a violation of the Geneva Convention and protestors
have demanded that Gloucestershire police investigate the pilots. However Gloucestershire
Police have advised that this is beyond their jurisdiction.

They have also protested against the presence of Saudi Arabia, whose Hawk Jet
display team is present. Saudi Arabia is currently violating human rights in Bahrain
and Yemen and at the show corporations are actively trying to sell more high technology
weaponry to them. Saudi Arabia also has the audacity to demand a slice of the
$100 billion fund set aside for climate change adaption, despite it lobbing against
climate change agreements and squandering its resources on air displays around
the world.

Protesters would like to thank the police for their concern that these vital
issues being raised may have put us in danger and the protection that they provided.

Protests will continue tomorrow.

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/07/482371.html

 


Censorship at the Fairford Air Tattoo

Kevin Lister 

21.07.2011  (Indymedia)

The Royal International Fairford Air Tattoo uses army squaddies to censor protest
aimed at the climate criminals and human rights abusers at the show.

Protesters were furious with the organizers of the Fairford Air Tattoo for implementing
the type of censorship that would normally be expected in some of the worst dictatorships.

At the Fairford Air Tattoo protesters handed out nearly 10,000 leaflets to highlight
the culpability of the military industrial complex in preventing international
climate change agreements and also to highlight the impact of depleted uranium.

Clearly somewhat angered that this pinnacle event of corporate and military glorification
was being challenged, the Tattoo management stationed army squaddies behind the
ticket inspection points to remove the leaflets from visitors in a blatant attempt
to implement the type of censorship that would normally be expected from the dictatorships
that we despise around the planet and who we frequently wage war on. Strange to
see our brave soldiers being used to implement censorship, perhaps the Air Tattoo
was taking advise from some of the visiting countries such as Saudi Arabia and
China.

But what option did they have, the issue with depleted uranium could hardly be
more important and more wrong. Its use is a violation of the Geneva Convention
and the Environmental Modification (ENMOD) agreements and some of the most senior
politicians in the UK and USA along with some of the most senior military commanders
could find themselves subject to extended periods in prison, the costs of clean
up will bankrupt the UK and US economies, the conclusion that it leads to about
the extreme danger of low level radiation makes the safety case for nuclear power
virtually untenable with the present technological solutions and finally without
the immense military advantage of depleted uranium weapons, we would not be able
to wage war as indiscriminately as we have to secure the amounts of fossil fuel
that we need to destroy our climate.

The only issue that is more important that depleted uranium is the imminent threat
of runaway climate change which the sponsors and corporations at this event clearly
do not want to acknowledge. Airbus for example, who have a big presence at the
show, are actively selling A380 Super Jumbos as private jets in defiance of all
the science and evidence on climate change.

It was also interesting to observe the Saudi Hawk display team being at the same
event that announced a £7.2 billion sale of Typhoon fighter jets to India. Saudi
Arabia is biggest provider of funds to the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan
and thus represents the biggest security threat to India. By supporting both side
of a potential conflict in this way, the Air Tattoo demonstrates the moral bankruptcy
of the arms industry and helps set the stage for massive wars in the future.

Kevin Lister

 e-mail:
kevin.lister@btopenworld.com

 

Notes:

1. See also
http://kevsclimatecolumn.blogspot.com/2011/07/fun-and-games-at-fairford-air-tattoo.html for a video dairy of the protests. [Some of the information on this blogsite is unpleasant and may be distressing,
including photos of babies born with severe abnormalities, some of which might
have been caused by depleted uranium].

2. A star attraction at the Air Tattoo was the A-10 ground attack plane, which
is specifically designed to fire depleted uranium munitions.

http://www.indymedia.org.uk/en/2011/07/482521.html

========================

Earlier


The Fairford Air Tattoo returns to the skies of Gloucestershire on Friday

15th July to Sunday 17th July.

2.6.2011

This event, which masquerades as a charity whilst simultaneously inviting

all the biggest arms dealers from around the world will go one stage further

this year – it will proudly exhibit the American A-10 tank buster as one of

its star attractions at the show.

This is the plane that has fired hundreds of tonnes of depleted uranium (DU)

across Iraq and the Balkans. In mockery of those families whose lives have

been blighted by DU, it will be used in this year’s show for family

entertainment.

Members of Plane Stupid, and a coalition of climate and anti-militarist

groups intend to stand in solidarity with all innocent victims of war and

will be cycling en masse to the air show in aid of the victims of DU and in

support of the ongoing campaigns to get DU banned.

Friday is the “industry” day when arms deals are made, Saturday and Sunday

are the public days where about 150,000 are expected on both days. The plan

is to stick to the well marked traffic routes and of course hope to keep to

a minimum the chaos that may be caused on the roads!

There will be a series of events during the weekend: bands playing Bob

Dylan’s

Master of War on Friday evening (at a location that will be announced on the

morning of Friday 15th on the Facebooksite Fairford Air Tattoo Sponsored

Bike Ride (
http://on.fb.me/iqecqP)) and there are also planns for various

workshops on the alternatives to a war based economy.

To gauge numbers please either join the Facebook group or contact the

organisers at
airtattoo.cyclist@yahoo.co.uk to confirm if you are coming.

Bikes can be hired from
www.go-by-cycle.co.uk who can arrange drop off and

pick up at Kemble Railway Station.

Please come with your camping equipment to face down one of the biggest

events legitimising the military industrial complex’s use of inhumane and

indiscriminate weapons and their rights to pollute our planet.

 

17 Jul 2011 

http://ruscombegreen.blogspot.com/2011/07/fairford-tattoo-protesters-hand-out.html

Fairford Tattoo: protesters hand out thousands of leaflets

Some will remember I noted the Sponsored cycle ride at Fairford to raise awareness
about the Tattoo and the very considerable concerns many of us have plus to raise
money for victims of depleted uranium – see my blog here and about the petition
here calling on the police to investigate the A10s (see more below). Well below
is the report last night on Indymedia. I have also spoken with one of the protesters
who said the event was wholly peaceful and that the police enabled the protest
in a supportive manner.

Protesters pitched up at the gates to the Fairford Air Tattoo today as part of
a weekends protest against an event that glorifies war and corporate excess and
are set to distribute tens of thousands of leaflets. The protests have targeted
the enormous greenhouse gas emissions from the event and how it negates the efforts
that thousands of other responsible citizens are making across Gloucestershire
to cut their own carbon footprint.

They have also protested against the presence of the American A-10 ground attack
plane that was on display. The A-10 is designed specifically to fire depleted
uranium shells. This has resulted in thousands of deformed babies being born across
Iraq along with a massive risk in childhood cancers. A-10 have also been deployed
in Libya.

The use of depleted uranium is a violation of the Geneva Convention and protestors
have demanded that Gloucestershire police investigate the pilots. However Gloucestershire
Police have advised that this is beyond their jurisdiction.

They have also protested against the presence of Saudi Arabia, whose Hawk Jet
display team is present. Saudi Arabia is currently violating human rights in Bahrain
and Yemen and at the show corporations are actively trying to sell more high technology
weaponry to them. Saudi Arabia also has the audacity to demand a slice of the
$100 billion fund set aside for climate change adaption, despite it lobbing against
climate change agreements and squandering its resources on air displays around
the world.

Protesters would like to thank the police for their concern that these vital
issues being raised may have put us in danger and the protection that they provided. 
Protests will continue tomorrow.

 

 

See also Wikipedia with information on the effects of depleted uranium on health;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Depleted_uranium

The use of DU in munitions is controversial because of questions about potential long-term health effects.[5][6] Normal functioning of the kidney, brain, liver, heart, and numerous other systems can be affected by uranium exposure, because uranium
is a
toxic metal.[7] It is weakly radioactive and remains so because of its long physical half-life (4.468 billion years for uranium-238, 700 million years for uranium-235). The biological half-life (the average time it takes for the human body to eliminate half the amount in
the body) for uranium is about 15 days.[8] The aerosol or spallation frangible powder produced during impact and combustion
of depleted uranium munitions can potentially contaminate wide areas around the
impact sites leading to possible inhalation by human beings.[9]

The actual acute and chronic toxicity of DU is also a point of medical controversy.
Multiple studies using cultured cells and laboratory rodents suggest the possibility
of
leukemogenic, genetic, reproductive, and neurological effects from chronic exposure.[5] A 2005 epidemiology review concluded: “In aggregate the human epidemiological evidence is consistent
with increased risk of birth defects in offspring of persons exposed to DU.”[10] The
World Health Organization, the directing and coordinating authority for health within the United Nations
which is responsible for setting health research norms and standards, providing
technical support to countries and monitoring and assessing health trends, states
that no risk of reproductive, developmental, or carcinogenic effects have been
reported in humans due to DU exposure.[11][12] This report has been criticized by Dr. Keith Baverstock for not including possible
long term effects of DU on human body.

………. and a lot more …..

 

and

IAEA  http://www.iaea.org/newscenter/features/du/du_qaa.shtml

.

Read more »

Cairn wins injunction against Greenpeace over Arctic oil drilling protest

10.6.2011 (Financial Times)

Greenpeace fights a new cold war over oil

By Christopher Thompson in the Davis Strait
 

The next morning the world’s best-known environmental group would launch its
biggest-ever seaborne non-violent direct action: the storming of the Leiv Eiriksson,
a 53,000-tonne rig currently used by Cairn Energy, the FTSE 100 oil and gas explorer, to drill for oil in the sub-Arctic region’s
frigid seas.

“The battle to stop Arctic oil is just beginning,” says Ben Stewart, a 37-year-old
activist aboard the ship and a Greenpeace communications officer.

A week later and the mood aboard Greenpeace’s two Amsterdam-registered ships
is more muted but no less defiant.

On Thursday a Dutch court granted Cairn an injunction against Greenpeace resulting in that for every day Greenpeace disrupts Cairn’s drilling operations
it will incur a penalty of €50,000 ($71,700), up to a maximum of €1m.

Greenpeace campaigners have been protesting against Cairn’s exploration programme
in the Arctic since the company drilled its first wells there last summer. This
year Cairn is spending $600m to explore prospects with an estimated 3.2bn barrels
of oil equivalent.

In little more than a week police have arrested 20 Greenpeace activists – nearly
halving the ships’ respective crews – for breaching the company’s operations.

True to the popular environmentalist stereotype, seafaring hippies – socks, sandals
and wild facial hair – do make up a proportion of the Greenpeace crew. But they
are outnumbered by a Benetton-advert range of activists and volunteers from 14
countries and across the professional spectrum: doctors, mountain guides, engineers,
a PhD student in anthropology, two cooks, a former private security guard and
a professional bass guitarist.

Although the injunction was granted for considerably less than the €2m per day
Cairn had argued for – the company estimates it stands to lose €4m for every day
it is prevented from drilling – there is doubt as to whether the direct action
part of Greenpeace’s campaign can continue.

Before activists occupied the Leiv Eiriksson – stopping drilling for 12 hours
last Saturday – two colleagues had been arrested for hanging off the underside
of the rig in a “survival pod” for four days.

In the cramped cabins aboard the Greenpeace ships it has been decided that the
strategy – for now – will focus on what it says is Cairn’s refusal to release
its full oil spill response plan, a contention that was noted by the Dutch court.

Greenpeace believes that an oil spill comparable to BP’s Macondo disaster in the Gulf of Mexico would wreck the Arctic’s pristine environment and be impossible
to effectively clean up – a scenario worsened by the fact Cairn can only operate
during the region’s short summer window when ice temporarily yields to ocean.

Cairn says its response plan is not just comprehensive but is based on the most
rigorous international norms. It says it cannot release details because of a “stipulation
of the Greenlandic authorities, not because of any decision by Cairn”. The company
adds: “Our greatest concern in conducting our lawful operations is ensuring they
are done safely.”

The anti-drilling campaign has roused high emotions in Greenland, with some local
press denouncing it as a violation of national sovereignty.

Wood Mackenzie, the energy and metals consultancy, estimates Greenland could
have reserves of 20bn barrels of oil. Many Greenlanders hope future oil revenue
could allow its fishing and tourism-dependent economy to achieve full independence
from Denmark.

The oil companies make the point that exploration and production in the Arctic
Circle is not new, and that several million barrels of oil are already produced
each day in the area.

“Cairn and the other international companies that own licences around Greenland
are doing so at the invitation of the Greenland government and people,” the company
says.

But for an anti-climate change organisation such as Greenpeace, its members are
united by a more general opposition to frontier oil: if the Arctic – surely the
ultimate frontier – is open for business then nowhere is sacred.

“We’re in this for the long haul,” says Nick Young, 40, a shaven-headed activist
from New Zealand blogging from a cabin below the Arctic Sunrise’s mess.

“Oil companies can only go into the Arctic because global warming has melted
the ice cap – that should be a catalyst to a non-fossil fuel future and not an
invitation to extract more oil.”

 

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/c133ec38-938e-11e0-922e-00144feab49a.html#axzz1OukMnuN1

 


 

 

 

 

see also

 



 

Cairn wins Arctic drilling injunction

By Christopher Thompson in the Davis Strait

9.6.2011 (Financial Times)


Greenpeace activists climb on to Cairn’s Leiv Eiriksson rig at the weekend

Cairn Energy has won an injunction against Greenpeace in a blow to the environmental group’s anti-Arctic drilling campaign.

On Thursday, a Dutch court imposed a penalty on Greenpeace of €50,000 per day
if the company’s operations are disrupted, up to a maximum of €1m (£887,000).

The FTSE 100 oil and gas explorer is drilling for oil in the waters of the Davis
Strait,
off the coast of Greenland.

Two Danish navy ships are patrolling a 500m exclusion zone around the company’s
Leiv Eiriksson rig.

Greenpeace has stationed two Amsterdam-registered ships in the area – the Arctic
Sunrise and the Esperanza – which have been used to harass Cairn’s operations
and drum up publicity.

“Right now we’re digesting the ruling and won’t make any snap decisions,” Ben
Stewart, a Greenpeace communications officer aboard the Esperanza told the Financial
Times.

The injunction comes after Cairn stopped drilling for 12 hours on Saturday when
18 protesters scaled the legs of the 53,000-tonne Leiv Eiriksson and occupied
its platform in an early morning raid.

Earlier, two Greenpeace activists had been arrested after they hung in a “survival
pod” strapped to the underside of the rig for four days. Though the injunction
is a victory for Cairn, the fine stipulated by the judge is far less than the
€2m for every day of halted drilling sought by the company when it applied for
the injunction last week.

The company estimates that any drilling delays could cost it $4m per day.

Despite the injunction, Greenpeace said its “struggle to protect the Arctic”
would continue. “It will happen on the high seas, in the courtroom, in the high
street and the ballot box. This is far from over,” said Mr Stewart.

Greenpeace is demanding to see the Cairn’s full “oil spill response plan” – which
has not been released – for use in the event of a spill such as
BP’s Macondo disaster in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Arctic is one of the last untapped hydrocarbon basins in the world with estimated
reserves of 20bn barrels of oil, according to Wood Mackenzie, the consultancy.

Cairn is spending some $600m (£366m) this campaign to try to tap an estimated
3.2bn barrels of oil equivalent.

 

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/71a28ed4-92d7-11e0-bd88-00144feab49a.html#axzz1OukMnuN1

 

EDITOR’S CHOICE

Cairn awaits ruling on eco warriors – Jun-07

Cairn seeks Greenpeace injunction – Jun-02

Greenland attacks Greenpeace over protest – May-30

Cairn Energy plans Greenland drilling – May-24

 

 

see also

Greenpeace website

http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/blog/climate/activists-and-pod-captured-danish-navy-isnt-over-20110602

Activists and pod captured by Danish navy, but this isn’t over

 

and

 

Greenpeace website

http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/blog/climate/activists-stop-oil-drilling-second-time-one-week-20110604

Activists stop oil drilling for second time in one week

 

 

Read more »

The Aberdeen Climate 9: An appeal to better judgement

7.6.2011  (Climate 9 – Plane Stupid blog)
 


 
www.climate9.com 

Today defendants Tilly Gifford and Dan Glass from the Climate 9 had their appeal
heard at Edinburgh Appeal Court against the conviction they received last summer
for a breach of the peace.

The conviction related to direct action taken in March 2009 where the Climate
9 shut down Aberdeen airport and directly stopped 107 tonnes of emissions from
contributing to man-made climate change. They played golf in a cage on the taxiway
to highlight the fact that the airport’s expansion will serve to deliver Donald
Trump’s super-rich golfer pals to his contentios course at Balmedie Estate.

Following a two week long trial in August 2010, which was the first jury-led
climate change trial in Scotland, all 9 defendants were convicted of Breach of
the Peace for their role in the protest. Dan and Tilly made the decision to appeal against the conviction as they hold
firm to the belief that the action they took was justified, proportionate and
necessary in the face of catastrophic climate change.

Appellant Dan Glass said:

“The Scottish legal system defines breach of the peace as an activity “causing
fear and alarm to the ordinary and reasonable person, and which threatens serious
disturbance to the community”. I can’t think of a better way to describe climate
change. Sometimes, we believe, the law must be challenged to protect our fundamental
freedom of expression and to disrupt lawful activities that are harming the prospects
of future generations. Furthermore, it’s the role of a democracy to protect the
voices of the minority as well as the majority”.

The appeal has reached its final stages after months of anticipation and against
the backdrop of severe climate change, as recent estimates suggest an unthinkable
4 degree temperature rise by 2080
. During the 4 hour hearing this morning the court heard a strong case from the
defence, who argued that the jury wasn’t given any sense of this grave context
regarding both the importance and urgency of the protest.

Appellant Tilly Gifford said:

“The judge presented a choice to the jury between ‘breach of the peace’ and ‘freedom
of expression’ without any context. This is simply not good enough. The jury should
be given the serious climate change context of the situation relating to the case,
otherwise the inference is completely abstract from the reality.”

The appeal verdict will be heard within the next 6 weeks in a final court hearing.
A date is not set yet. If it is successful it will set an important precedent
for future protest cases, through actively defending freedom of expression and
supporting the legitimacy of the right to protest given the governments inaction
to effectively tackle climate change.
  It would be the first legal case in Scotland to engage with the severity of
climate change that we face and challenge the ‘business as usual’ attitude that
the aviation industry is taking in its expansion plans.

Plane Stupid spokesperson, Joe Ryle said:

“Aviation remains one of the fastest growing source of CO2 emissions in the UK
and we cannot let this go unchallenged. However the heart of this debate is about
our fundamental right to protest and whether we are prepared to tolerate greater
disruption to business as usual in the face of climate change.”


http://www.planestupid.com/blogs/2011/06/7/appeal-better-judgement

 
 
 
see also
 

Aberdeen Climate9 appeal at the Edinburgh Appeal Court June 7th 

Date Added: 6th June 2011

 

Defendants Tilly Gifford and Dan Glass are appealing the Climate9 conviction
of Breach of Peace at Edinburgh Appeal court on June 7th with results to follow.  The Climate9 trial lasted for 2 weeks in Aberdeen and was the first jury-led
climate change trial in Scotland. The appellants were convicted in August 2010
for their role in the climate change protest at Aberdeen airport on March 3rd 2009, when they o
ccupied the taxiway, briefly shutting the airport down.  


Click here to view full story…

 



 
 
see also

Read more »