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Press Release: Twice as Many Leeds Residents Object to LBA's Plans than Support

On deadline day, twice as many Leeds residents object to Leeds Bradford Airport's expansion plans as support them.

On 17th September 2020, as the deadline closes for public comments on Leeds Bradford Airport’s expansion proposals, objections from Leeds residents outnumber support comments by nearly 2 to 1.

Leeds Bradford Airport’s plans to increase flights and passengers numbers, and build a new terminal, have proved highly controversial. 3,295 comments have been submitted to the Council’s planning portal: 60% objections, 40% in support. Leeds residents have made 1,857 comments - 1,208 objections compared to 649 who supported expansion. Overall, nearly two thirds of all objections came from Leeds residents while less than half of the supporters live in the city.

Chris Foren, chair of the Group for Action on Leeds Bradford Airport, said: “These figures send a clear message to the Council’s decision makers - Leeds people want you to reject LBA’s planning application. It would be totally wrong to allow the airport to double its greenhouse gas emissions in the middle of the climate emergency. In fact, expansion would mean that from 2030, the airport would pump out more greenhouse gas emissions than are allowed in the carbon budget for the whole of the rest of Leeds. And there’s no prospect of carbon free aircraft for decades.”

Chris added: “We’re delighted so many people support GALBA’s campaign. The airport’s Australian owners have millions to spend on marketing and lobbying. We’re just local people who care deeply about our environment and people’s health. It’s a David v Goliath struggle for sure. But you know who won that - David!”

Additional notes:

1) Photo: photo of Chris Foren (second from the right) and other GALBA activists at Leeds Bradford Airport.

2) Numbers: analysis of comments posted on Leeds City Council’s Planning Portal, on Wednesday 3 September, shows the following:

  • 3,295 comments (excluding duplicates): 1,968 (60%) objections, 1,327 (40%) support

  • 1,968 objections, including one signed by 90 academics from Leeds University and one from Burley-in-Wharfedale containing 320 names = 2,378 individuals have objected

  • 1,327 support comments, all from individuals

  • Of the total, 1,208 of the 1,968 objections came from people who live in Leeds; only 649 of the 1,327 supporters live in Leeds

2) Climate science: the Leeds Climate Commission and other experts in climate science from Leeds University have calculated that LBA’s proposals mean emissions from the airport would exceed the amount allowed for the whole of Leeds, in the Leeds Carbon Reduction Roadmap, from 2030 onwards.

3) Climate emergency: in March 2019, Leeds City Council declared a climate emergency and gave a commitment to make Leeds ‘net zero’ for carbon emissions by 2030.

4). Decision day: no date has yet been made public for when the City Plans Panel of Leeds City Council will consider LBA’s planning application.

[AM1]Point out which is CR in the photo (e.g. ‘Fourth from the left’). Make sure photos are fully labelled too, as they will get sent around a newspaper and can get separated from a press release.

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