PLANE STUPID Newsletter #1

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"Flying kills. We all know it, and we all do it. And we won't stop doing it until the government reverses its policy and starts closing the runways.� George Monbiot

Since Plane Stupid was established in November 2005, we’ve been holding regular meetings with local residents and community groups near to Heathrow and Luton. "I've got nothing to lose. I have tried the political process," Christine Shilling of the No Third Runway Action Group (NoTRAG) told BBC News, as they reported on how those living close to airports were teaming up with Earth First! activists.

As well as residents’ community groups, we’ve met with other environmental activists including members of London Rising Tide, Transport 2000, RAGE Collective and local Greenpeace & FoE groups.

News that experienced direct activists were teaming up with local opponents of airport expansion was met with a media frenzy that continues including on The Today Programme, Tonight With Trevor McDonald, ITV London Tonight, BBC London News and newspapers including The Guardian, The Independent and The Observer.

Following a New Years Day front page on The Observer:

“The bitterest environmental battle of a generation is set to erupt over government plans to give the go-ahead for a massive expansion of Heathrow airport.�

The Independent reported:

“The most bitter environmental battle for a decade is set to break out over plans to build a third runway at Heathrow, with experienced campaigners saying they will join locals in taking "whatever extreme action is needed" to stop construction.�

George Monbiot wrote in The Guardian:

“At last the battle lines have been drawn, and the first major fight over climate change is about to begin. All over the country, a coalition of homeowners and anarchists, of Nimbys and internationalists, is mustering to fight the greatest future cause of global warming: the growth of aviation. Not all these people care about the biosphere. Some are concerned merely that their homes are due to be bulldozed, or that, living under the new flight paths, they will never get a good night's sleep again. But anyone who has joined a broad-based coalition understands the power of this compound of idealism and dogged self-interest.�

Johann Hari commented in The Evening Standard:

“The new battleground against global warming is in West London.�

The political classes are chattering…

“They have underestimated the potential of an environmental campaign. My neighbouring Conservative MP, John Randall, has threatened to lie down in front of the bulldozers. We're getting Tory Swampys on this,� explained John McDonnell, MP

Here are some other events coming up…

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The following 3 events are NOT organised by Planestupid.com. For more information, please contact the organisers via the provided contact details.
Thanks, Plane Stupid
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There will be a Budget Day Aviation Protest, 22 March, 10am to 11.15am
(possibly continuing later) opposite Downing Street on jnct. Whitehall and Richmond Terrace. (Police permission has been verbally agreed). Leading members of several groups are participating.

The protest is against Gordon Brown's support for aviation expansion in the Pre-Budget Report. The protest is intended to coincide with the budget box photocall around 11am, and we will have a mocked-up Gordon Brown with appropriate props. Note that there will be a WDM protest on water resources in a neighbouring position.

All welcome, but anyone likely to attend please advise Jim at quailrecords@hotmail.com or 020 8458 1178, and/or please come to a
pre-meeting on Monday 20, at the Edinboro Castle, Mornington Terrace NW1 (Camden Town tube) in the far alcove to the right of the bar, between 7pm and 9pm.

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AirportWatch Campaigners' Conference

AirportWatch is hosting a conference for campaign groups and individuals in York on Saturday 13th May 2006. The event is designed to support new and existing campaigners at the UK's smaller regional airports.

The event will offer delegates a chance to:

hear experts from national organisations and established airport campaign groups network with new activists from a wide range of regional airports join in the campaign for a fundamental review of the Aviation White Paper

For more information, see www.airportwatch.org.uk.

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No More Roads & Runways
a skillshare to empower and energise you and your campaign

Do you want to...
*Plan effective strategy and action?
*Take dynamic nonviolent direct action?
*Know your legal rights?
*Attract new members to your campaign group,and keep them?
*Meet other roads and runways activists from around the UK and share your experience?
...then, come for 1 day or for the whole weekend

=Friday May 19th to Sunday May 21st , Near OxfordDormitory accommodation and vegan food provided.
Donations towards cost much appreciated.

for more info contact Seeds for Change
0845 458 4776
skillshare@seedsforchange.org.uk
Places are limited, so booking is essential

Want the skills, but can't make the skillshare?
Seeds for Change can come to your roads and runway group with a workshop tailored to your needs. Workshops are free to grassroots groups. See our website for more info: http://www.seedsforchange.org.uk/free