Eskimo plea against airport expansion

AN ESKIMO leader is appealing to councillors to think about the affect on the global environment when they consider proposals to expand Bristol International Airport

AN ESKIMO leader is appealing to councillors to think about the affect on the global environment when they consider proposals to expand Bristol International Airport.Aqqaluk Lynge, a former Greenland MP and leader of the Inuit Circumpolar Council, has recorded a special television message asking them to consider whether expanding the airport is 'really necessary'.Mr Lynge was in Britain to speak to MPs and give evidence at the Stansted Airport Public Inquiry when he recorded the message, which will now be sent to councillors on DVD.In the message he tells councillors that the Inuit are losing their traditional way of life with the hunting grounds provided by sea ice to the north of Greenland are no longer there.He tells councillors: "Your way of life is changing our way of life."We are asking you to be responsible."Bristol International Airport is expected to submit a planning application in September outlining its expansion plans.A master plan has been drawn up by the airport, indicating that passenger numbers will increase to nine million by 2015.But the Stop Bristol Airport Expansion Campaign says that given the current rapid growth in passenger numbers, BIA is likely to exceed these figures by 2009.The campaign group add that aviation is currently responsible for 6.5 per cent of carbon dioxide emissions, but because of the added impact of emissions at high altitudes, it is thought to be responsible for more than 13 per cent of the UK's global warming impact.Stop Bristol Airport Expansion spokesman Jeremy Birch said: "I hope North Somerset councillors will listen to Aqqaluk Lynge's message."Britain and the south west will not escape the climate impacts already being felt with such force in the Artic."This year's floods may only be a flavour of what is to come.


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