Dutch demonstrations against aviation lobby

At the Museumplein in the heart of Amsterdam, some seven hundred residents from the Schiphol region, dressed in red, gathered on Saturday afternoon, June 23, to demonstrate against the growth of aviation. At the same time, hundreds of people went into the streets in five other cities near the Dutch airports. The action was a collaboration between Greenpeace, environmental organizations and the National Residents Alliance on Aviation (LBBL), with the ORS and WVB as UECNA members. This cooperation between residents groups across the country is an important signal, with objectives that every action group can support, so that NIMBY behavior can be prevented.

‘Stop the growth of aviation’

“We can no longer close our eyes and ears to the endless growth of aviation. More and more Dutch people are worried about the changing climate, the increasing nuisances and the bizarre exceptional position of aviation,” according to the joint manifesto. “The old-fashioned government policy leads to more and more flights, larger airports and idiot low ticket prices. But aviation growth does not go hand in hand with a green, safe future. We want to be able to travel affordably and quickly in a sustainable, climate-friendly manner. We call on the government to intervene and invest in alternatives. Stop the unfair competitive position of the airline in relation to the train and the bus. Raise tax on airline tickets and kerosene.”

Alternative scenario needed

We are curious if the action is heard in the debates of Tuesday 26 June. Then the Commission for Infrastructure and Water Management will debate with Minister Van Nieuwenhuizen about Lelystad Airport, which has been appointed to (for now) take over 10,000 flights from Schiphol. Because growth remains the most important scenario on the political agenda of the parliament. Here too the LBBL will come with alternatives.