Bristol Airport Action Network crowdfunding to challenge airport’s appeal against North Somerset Council rejection
BAAN (Bristol Airport Action Network) Committee Coordinators are crowdfunding, to raise £6,000 for their attempt to challenge the airport’s appeal against the refusal, by North Somerset Council, of its expansion plans. BAAN says: the airport’s plans “would mean an extra 23,600 flights and two million passengers a year (as well as an extra 10,000 car movements a day). They would also mean a further million tonnes of carbon to be emitted a year at this time of climate and ecological emergency. Our position is that this airport expansion (and others that are planned) is not legally compliant with the Climate Change Act, The Paris Agreement and the Government’s commitment to be carbon neutral by 2050 and MUST BE STOPPED.” They are doing all they can to stop the expansion. BAAN say: “We have been given a very favourable fee quote from a specialist planning barrister and are talking to a number of top experts who are likely to give their time pro-bono or at much reduced rates to represent us at the appeal. We are also being helped by Greenpeace and other environmental organisations.” Donations would be greatly appreciated.
BAAN (Bristol Airport Action Network) Committee Coordinators are crowdfunding
We are committee members of BAAN, a committed group of environmental activists from many different environmental organisations who are determined to stop the reckless expansion of Bristol Airport.
25 days to go
£3,680 pledged of £6,000 target from 62 pledges
Your card will only be charged if the case meets its target of £6,000 by Sep. 26, 2020, 3 p.m.
About the case
Bristol Airport submitted plans to expand in 2018 which were turned down in Feb this year; they have now appealed against this refusal. Their plans would mean an extra 23,600 flights and two million passengers a year (as well as an extra 10,000 car movements a day). They would also mean a further million tonnes of carbon to be emitted a year at this time of climate and ecological emergency. Our position is that this airport expansion (and others that are planned) is not legally compliant with the Climate Change Act, The Paris Agreement and the Government’s commitment to be carbon neutral by 2050 and MUST BE STOPPED.
We are the coordinating committee of an unpaid volunteer community group-Bristol Airport Action Network (BAAN) who are determined to challenge the airport’s appeal. The original planning committee hearing was in February 2020 and we helped to mobilise residents. 84% of North Somerset residents who made comments rejected the expansion and over 8,000 formal objections were submitted on the planning website The result was that the local councillors overwhelmingly rejecting the plans at a public committee hearing. However, the airport refuse to accept this democratic decision and have now publicly announced that they intend to appeal.
We are determined to continue to resist their plans and to give evidence (and test the airport’s evidence) at the planning enquiry. This is likely to be a 3-4 week appeal process and, to make a difference, we need to be represented by a specialist barrister and leading experts. We will be concentrating our evidence on the negative effect of the rapidly expanding impact of aviation on the climate and ecological crisis and, depending on the airport’s evidence, the impact of COVID on the need for any expansion.
We have been given a very favourable fee quote from a specialist planning barrister and are talking to a number of top experts who are likely to give their time pro-bono or at much reduced rates to represent us at the appeal. We are also being helped by Greenpeace and other environmental organisations.
Despite this, we still need to raise a large amount of money to pay professional fees. Every penny raised will be spent on fees to convince the Planning Inspector at the appeal that Bristol Airport’s planned expansion is not legally compliant with the Climate Change Act, The Paris Agreement and the Government’s commitment to be carbon neutral.
This is a very important test case for all regional airport expansions as we know that there are more than 20 plus other airports with current expansion plans and ‘live’ applications are currently in place for Leeds & Bradford and Southampton airports. The result of Bristol Airport’s appeal will act as the benchmark and it is vitally important that these expansion plans are resisted. The UK needs to be leading the way as COP 26 approaches and setting international standards.
The science is clear but the airports have totally ignored this and are recklessly pursuing their growth agenda at this time of climate and ecological crisis.
We desperately need your support; please contribute as much as you can and share this page with your networks now!
Bristol Airport have stated they will appeal their rejection to expand by North Somerset Council.
XR fought a year long campaign & now the legal campaign under BAAN (Coodinating Committee) have launched a crowd funder to raise money to resist Bristol Airports plans. We intend to participate fully in the inquiry using our own barrister & experts. We plan to focus on the impact of aviation on climate change.
We have been told the Bristol Airport decision will be an important test case for the other 20 plus airports who also have expansion plans.
We have a month to raise £6,000! One of our team is a solicitor and is doing a lot of the unpaid legal work which is saving us thousands. However, we still have to pay the barrister (albeit at a much reduced rate) and expert expenses. We are assembling a fantastic team with help from Greenpeace & top experts. WE REALLY BELIEVE WE CAN WIN THIS WITH THE RIGHT PROFESSIONAL SUPPORT. Please give as generously as you can & share widely. If other potential donors have questions we are happy to talk to them.
Bristol protests against the airport appealing against North Somerset Council rejection of expansion plans
Extinction Rebellion and local groups held a number of protest on Saturday 29th August, at UK airports. A large event was held at Bristol Airport, in protest against the decision by the airport to appeal against the rejection of their expansion plans, by North Somerset Council. Extinction Rebellion held a “mourning procession” and hundreds of people marched to the airport, observing Covid social distancing, and in silence, to follow a death theme. One of the protest organisers commented: “When the refusal of Bristol International Airport (BIA) expansion plans became international news in February this year, everyone thought we’d seen the death of the terrifying fantasy of an expanded airport in this time of ecological and climate emergency. We were wrong.” Another said the “democratic process, underpinned by massive public objection, is being threatened, whilst lies about economic benefits and carbon-neutrality are spread with flagrant disregard to the truth.” And it is crazy that precious council funds have to be wasted on this unnecessary appeal, when the money is need to deal with Covid-related issues, among many others.
Around 250 job losses likely at Bristol airport, due to collapse in its air travel demand
Nearly 250 jobs could be lost at Bristol Airport because demand for air travel has plummeted. The unions are saying these redundancies would leave a ‘huge economic hole’ in the region. Bristol Airport has begun consultation with Unite over making 76 directly employed staff redundant. Swissport has also announced 167 job losses. A smaller number of redundancies at other firms are also expected to be announced soon. There are the usual claims about the alleged economic benefit the airport brings, and the number of jobs it supports. These conveniently ignore the fact that most flights are taken by local people flying abroad for their leisure, spending their money abroad – not in local businesses or local leisure/ holiday destinations. To try to save jobs, the unions want delay, in the hope that air travel demand picks up. The AOA – lobby groups for the industry – said this week up to 20,000 jobs at Britain’s airports are at risk as a result of the collapse of air travel due to the Covid pandemic. Bristol is yet another area has has become too dependent on the airport for jobs, and this vulnerability has now been shown up. Aviation is no longer a sector with guaranteed security and growth for a local economy.
Bath and North East Somerset Council rejects Bristol Airport application to increase night flights in summer months
Bath and North East Somerset Council has rejected an application by Bristol Airport to increase the number of night flights. The airport wants to increase the number of night flights to 4,000 throughout the whole year, starting in summer 2021. Currently the airport is allowed 3,000 night flights throughout the summer months and 1,000 in winter. The airport wants to be able to move some of their winter allocation to the summer, when demand is higher. Bath and North East Somerset Council rejected the application – stating it would have a negative impact on people living in towns near the airport. The request for more flights comes after the council opposed the expansion of Bristol Airport in March 2019. Then in March 2020 North Somerset Council threw out the plans, (which included increasing passenger numbers by an extra two million each year and building more car parks) on the grounds they were “incompatible” with the council’s declaration of a climate emergency. The extra night flights would cause noise nuisance to people in both councils.
Bristol Airport expansion plans rejected by North Somerset council by 18-7
North Somerset Council’s Planning & Regulatory Committee has gone against the advice of their own planning officers and have refused permission for Bristol Airport to expand. It has been a “David versus Goliath” battle of local campaigners against the airport, (owned by the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan). The airport wanted to expand from 10 million to 12 million passengers per year, with large carpark and other building. The opposition to the plans was huge, on ground of carbon emissions, as well as noise and general local damage. There were almost 9,000 objections sent in by members of the public, against 2,400 in favour. Councillors voted 18-7 against the plans, with one abstention. Councillors were persuaded that paltry economic benefits to the airport and airlines were far outweighed by the environmental harm. There would be large land take for the parking, and the extra carbon emissions would make targets of carbon neutrality for the area unachievable. Because the councillors went against the officers’ recommendations, the decision will return to the same committee to be ratified. If the decision is ratified, the applicant has six months to lodge an appeal, which would be heard at a public inquiry.
Still unknown if Bristol airport will appeal against expansion refusal – they have to decide by 19th September
Bristol Airport has not yet decided whether to appeal against a decision to refuse its expansion plans. North Somerset Planning and Regulatory committee councillors went against the council officers’ recommendation earlier this year, to reject the expansion plans which would have allowed the airport to increase its current capacity from 10 million to 12 million passengers per year. The councillors ruled that environmental and societal impacts outweighed the economic benefits of the expansion. The airport has 6 months in which to appeal, and that time ends of 19th September 2020. A spokesman for the airport said a decision on whether to lodge an appeal had yet to be made and was still under review. The decline in air travel demand will be a factor in the decision. The costs of a public inquiry could run into tens of thousands of pounds for North Somerset Council. It has confirmed it will defend any appeal but said it was unable to comment on any potential costs. It would be for the Planning Inspector who is overseeing the case to decide what costs and conditions to impose on North Somerset Council, if it loses.