Green Councillors have urged both the Labour Mayor of Bristol and the Tory Metro Mayor for the West of England, not to betray their climate promises by refusing to oppose the expansion of Bristol Airport. The pair have been asked to publicly oppose Bristol Airport’s expansion at the upcoming planning enquiry on the issue. Submissions to the enquiry have to be in by Mon 22nd February.
North Somerset rejected plans last year to expand the airport which would lead to emissions of CO2 equivalents increasing by over one million tonnes per year. The Airport are appealing against this decision. Both Bristol and the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) have declared climate emergencies and set ‘net zero’ goals for carbon emissions. Bristol City Council also voted in December 2020 to formally oppose airport expansion.
Councillor Jerome Thomas, Green Party Councillor and proposer of the motion passed at Bristol City Council in December opposing the expansion of the airport has been asking the Mayor for weeks to publicly oppose the expansion:
“This is the last chance for our leaders to be on the right side of history and not betray the climate action they promised when they announced a climate emergency. Our Mayor’s cannot position themselves as climate leaders with one breath, but not oppose the biggest climate decision for our city and region with the next. Expanding Bristol Airport would lead to an additional one million tonnes of CO2 equivalents being released every year – it is completely incompatible with meeting our climate goals.”
Bristol’s Mayor previously said in 2019:
“Bristol has led the way on telling the truth about the climate emergency we face and tackling it, alongside challenges at the same time around social justice.”
Bristol City Councillors voted in December 2020 for the council to formally oppose the airport expansion.
Councillor Thomas continued:
“I am calling on Bristol’s Mayor to make good on his climate pledges, and the wishes of the council he represents and write to the planning inspectorate before Monday outlining Bristol City Council’s opposition airport expansion. Not to do so would not only be a betrayal of the climate emergency declaration, it would also be a betrayal of our council’s vote to oppose airport expansion.”