Greta Thunberg says plans to expand airport cancelled ‘thanks to climate activists’

PUBLISHED: 13:27 28 February 2020 | UPDATED: 10:02 03 March 2020

Greta Thunberg gave a speech on College Green.

Greta Thunberg gave a speech on College Green.

Archant

Environmentalist Greta Thunberg has praised the efforts of ‘climate activists’ in North Somerset Council’s decision to throw out Bristol Airport’s expansion plans.

At a rally in Bristol, highlighting the need for the younger generation to be the 'adults in the room', the 17 year old made an impassioned speech to thousands of protestors gathered on College Green before the start of a rally through the city.

She said: "If enough people are fighting for change, then change will come, and every single person counts.

"Just look at Bristol as an example.

"The other week, the plans to expand Bristol Airport were cancelled - a lot thanks to climate activists.

Greta Thunberg gave a speech on College Green.Greta Thunberg gave a speech on College Green.

"And, of course, this is far from enough, but it shows it does actually make a difference.

"Activism works. So I'm telling you to act.

"If you look throughout history, all the great changes have come from the people.

"We are being betrayed by the people in power, and they are failing us, but we will not back down.

Greta Thunberg gave a speech on College Green.Greta Thunberg gave a speech on College Green.

"If you feel threatened by that, then I have some very bad news for you - we will not be silenced because we are the change, and change is coming whether you like it or not."

READ MORE: GALLERY - MASS PROTESTS IN WESTON OVER AIRPORT EXPANSION

At a special meeting of North Somerset Council's planning committee on February 10, councillors voted by a majority of 18 to seven against the airport's proposals to expand facilities to accommodate an additional 2 million passengers a year.

The proposals would have seen more than 97,000 flights arriving and departing the airport a year, 23,800 flights more than in 2017.

The plans submitted in December last year received more than 11,000 public comments, including 8,473 objections and 2,417 letters of support before the consultation closed on Thursday.

Ahead of the meeting, council officers released a 175-page report recommending the expansion for approval.

However, the plans have faced stiff opposition from several groups including Stop Bristol Airport Expansion, Bristol Airport Action Network and Extinction Rebellion, which held three days of protest in the run-up to the decision.

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