Extinction Rebellion Luton carried out our first action at London Luton Airport on 20th September 2019, see details of this action here: Why we took action at the airport today.
Today, 7th October 2019, our three XR Luton activists were conditionally discharged with costs. Here is the statement they read in court:
We took action on the 20th September to raise awareness and sound the alarm on the tragedy that is at this minute unfolding around the world.
We believe that our actions caused microscopic damage, compared to the catastrophic devastation that is already happening on our Planet and is only set to get worse.
Thousands of people are dying or being displaced due to extreme weather disasters, land is being swallowed up by the rising oceans due to the melting of ice caps, tipping points are passing us by, reducing the chances for future generations to live decent lives.
(Once Greenland’s ice melts the sea levels will rise by 20 degrees, if the Antarctic ice melts the sea levels will rise by a staggering 200 degrees)!
Burning fossil fuels is one of the main contributors to greenhouse gasses and the warming of the planet. Planes burn a lot of fossil fuel! Aviation is the fastest growing cause of climate change and Luton is the fastest growing airport in the UK. In fact in the UK alone air travel uses 88 million barrels of fuel every year.
In the past 30 years there has been a 60% increase in carbon emissions. Luton Borough Council will declare a climate emergency in January, and has plans to make Luton carbon neutral (not zero carbon) by 2030 – but the very same council is also determined to double the capacity of Luton Airport to 36 million passengers. To do this they will build on Wigmore Valley Park, causing the death and destruction of a wildlife habitat, build new roads and build a new terminal.
How are these statements compatible?
We therefore demand that Luton Borough Council, London Luton Airport Ltd and London Luton Airport Operations Ltd start acting responsibly and reduce flights, not increase them.
Luton Borough Council, London Luton Airport Ltd and London Luton Airport Operations Ltd are all responsible for the enormous destruction that an expansion will bring, with increased air pollution and appalling use of airport concession income, which should be going to essential local services and sustainable projects. But, instead, they continue to chase the impossible quest for endless growth which is slowly killing us all.Extinction Rebellion Luton, read in Luton Magistrates Court, 7th October 2019