Rebels accuse Bristol Airport of greenwashing

A large group of Extinction Rebellion protestors accused Bristol Airport of making grossly misleading claims on Tuesday 17 September at the Sustainable Transport Festival.

A passionate, non-violent, but large and noisy protest took place at both We the Curious and later at City Hall during the event. Bristol Airport, which is responsible for the largest carbon emissions in Bristol, sponsored the festival. 

Demonstrators from Bristol and North Somerset held large banners outside the venues reading  ‘No airport expansion’, ‘Greenwash’ and ‘Tell the truth’. This was part of a long-running protest against the planning application by Bristol Airport to expand from approximately 11 million passengers a year to 20 million. 

These plans come despite the dire warnings of a rapidly heating world and huge increase in extreme weather events created by carbon emissions from human activity. 

The protestors are also concerned about sleep disturbance from summer night-flights, a car park built on the Green Belt and increased car journeys creating more congestion and air pollution locally.

Bristol Airport delivered a seminar inside the Council chamber called ‘Becoming a net zero airport’. In response, three silent female protesters held up signs saying ‘Greenwash’, ‘No such thing as a carbon neutral airport’ and ‘Tell the truth’. 

Tarisha Finnegan-Clarke, Extinction Rebellion coordinator of the Bristol Airport Action Network (BAAN) said:

‘Bristol City Council and North Somerset Council have both declared a climate emergency. They should resist these plans.’

Bristol Airport have consistently lied about the impact of their business on the environment, and the terrible disruption and health worries they are causing local communities.’

‘This decision will be taken in a few months. If you want to stop this disastrous application, write to North Somerset planners on the council website (Planning Application), and write to the Mayor of Bristol, councillors (North Somerset & Bristol) and local MPs.

‘We can win this fight and help preserve the planet for our children, and their children’s lives’.