Down the ages: En­vi­ron­men­tal protests COUN­TRY­SIDE AL­LIANCE, LON­DON DRAX POWER STA­TION, YORK­SHIRE

BBC Wildlife Magazine - - News Feature -

TWYFORD DOWN, HAMP­SHIRE 1991–92 One of the early road protests that fought the ex­ten­sion of the M3 through a pro­tected area. The main group of pro­tes­tors lived in ‘ben­ders’ on the top of the down, and though they lost this bat­tle, the wider war against the na­tional road-ex­pan­sion pro­gramme was ar­guably won when the in­com­ing Labour govern­ment cut it in 1997. Re­sult: Won? 2002 More than 400,000 peo­ple ( left) marched through the cen­tre of the cap­i­tal, with Labour’s pro­posed ban on fox hunt­ing the main fo­cus of their anger. But there was a broader po­lit­i­cal edge, with the ru­ral econ­omy, jobs and hous­ing also high­lighted. The ban on hunt­ing went through any­way in 2004, and came into force the fol­low­ing year. Re­sult: Lost 2006 In 2006, some 600 pro­tes­tors de­scended on Drax Power Sta­tion in North York­shire to raise aware­ness about cli­mate change. Drax was Bri­tain’s largest emit­ter of CO2 at the time, but has since started us­ing biomass fuel and has been de­scribed as one of the world’s big­gest de­car­bon­i­sa­tion pro­jects. Re­sult: Won SH­EFFIELD, YORK­SHIRE 2016–18 Of those ar­rested while cam­paign­ing against treefelling in Sh­effield ( above), two were given sus­pended prison sen­tences, and charges were dropped against an­other three. Ac­cord­ing to Sh­effield Tree Ac­tion Groups, 5,500 street trees have been felled in re­cent years. In Oc­to­ber, the city coun­cil an­nounced its agree­ment, with pri­vate con­trac­tor Amey, to re­duce the pro­gramme's scale but pre­cise de­tails were not avail­able. Re­sult: Lost?

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