To Bridgepoint Capital, the aviation industry, so-called captains of industry, political leaders and the great Yorkshire public…
You may be aware that recently Leeds Bradford Airport was sold off lock stock and barrel by our five West Yorkshire councils. It was bought by equity giant Bridgepoint, whose offices we are visiting today, for a staggering £145 Million.
We have noted with great concern the interest that Bridgepoint has shown in our region. Thankyou for the interest, but let us be clear we don’t need this kind of interest. You seem hungry to buy up companies and expand them regardless of social and environmental costs.
It seems that you, as the new owners of our airport, want to double passenger numbers from about 3 million passengers to seven million by the year 2015. You say you are gong to spend £70 million to do this.
We have some advise for you. Save your money. Spend it somewhere else it is wanted more. Further expansion is out of the question. The airport is ruining our lives and our environment.
We are shocked and dismayed that you are planning this kind of expansion. It flies in the face of the government’s plans to halt the growth of greenhouse gases. Do you realize that the Government has set a national target for a reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from 1990 levels of 60% by 2050? It’s clear that even if you do know, you don’t care. Current growth in aviation means that in the future air travel will account for virtually all our carbon allowance as a country – that’s before any of us turn on a lightbulb your industry have used up all the carbon we are budgeted to use as a nation. How selfish. How stupid.
Do you realize that aviation has now become the fastest growing source of greenhouse gases, the main contributor to climate change? Did you notice the devastating floods that just hit our region from Hull to Sheffield and York, claiming lives, destroying thousands of homes and causing millions in damages? Do you realize this devastation is linked to carbon industries like aviation?
Today we say Enough. This is why we are here. We, as representatives of the people of Yorkshire demand the following:
• That Bridgepoint Capital immediately divests itself from Leeds Bradford Airport
• That full control of the airport is given to the people of Leeds
• That considering there are plentiful airports in the region at Manchester, Liverpool, Newcastle and now Doncaster, Leeds Bradford Airport is closed down.
• That the site of the airport is made into an environmental park using the £150 Million windfall that the local councils received from selling the airport.
These are our demands. They are the only way we can protect the future of our region, our children and our environment. We cannot watch as you profit from the plunder of our future. The people of Yorkshire will not stop opposing your expansion plans until our demands are met.
From the Dales and Valleys of Northern England.
This day, 20th August 2007.
Wanted: Bridgepoint Capital
For environmental crimes against the people of Yorkshire…
In particular… for planning to expand Leeds Bradford Airport…
… for proposing to double passenger numbers to 7 million
…for putting our environmental future in great peril
...and for ignoring warnings of scientists and governments about the links between airport expansion and climate change