Tipping Points: hands off Cheshire
Manchester airport has proposed a new flight plan that will send more air traffic over Cheshire East. This comes after an attempt to disrupt hundreds of square meters of protected land for a carpark. In fact the whole airport has planned expansions to double its size and usage by 2030, all under the guise of a 'sustainable development plan'.
Obviously people are concerned about impacts to their locality, whether that is 800 car parking spaces destined for Styal on green belt, more aircraft flying over their homes or the impacts of HS2 on their local environment. But for me these are symptoms of the bigger picture. This is going on all over the country and the world. Expansion and perpetual growth which the planet simply can not take.
Here in the North West we see plans of the Cheshire Constellation Partnership, the 38 Local Enterprise Partnerships across the country, the Northern Powerhouse initiative, HS2 connecting airports and the expansion of Manchester Airport, Heathrow, Bristol and Birmingham. All at a time of a crisis in our climate. We are in a state of emergency, we have perhaps the next five years to reduce green house gas emissions to enable us to achieve a safe level by the end of the next decade. If we fail in the next five years we will almost certainly fail in the subsequent five years. This is believed by the United Nations, NASA and others to almost certainly trigger irreversible tipping points leading to climate chaos that would threaten humane existence for 85% of the world population.
Cheshire and Warrington LEP want to grow the local economy from 30 billion to 50 billion by 2040 they plan to do it by securing HS2, Airport expansion and building on green belt. It is time to understand we simply have to learn to live within the means of our one and only home, planet Earth.