CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

It’s time for direct action against the folly that is HS2

17 March, 2017

• POLLUTION is currently the biggest killer of humans, especially children, and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has stated that Britain has the highest number of annual deaths from nitrogen dioxide in the European Union, after Italy.

Then the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan admits that our children’s lungs are being stunted in areas exceeding legal air quality levels and Margaret Chan, of The World Health Organisation, calls on all governments to take action against pollution.

So it cannot be right that, knowing this, our government is forcing us to endure all this suffering by allowing HS2 to add to this pollution, and is thereby showing what contempt it has for its citizens, which surely amounts to state-sponsored killing of its people.

The government is breaking human rights laws under Article 2 which is “The Right to Life,” and doesn’t seem to have any intention of facing up to this issue (only making it worse by adding to it, with HS2) even though they have twice been sued by ClientEarth, for allowing pollution massively to exceed the legal limits, and doing nothing about it.

It is clear that neither the government, MPs, local officials, or the Lords will protect us from this flawed project (which will harm us all, and was obtained through bullying, misinformation, and abuse of the underprivileged).

And, further, that they are prepared to put profits above our health and wellbeing, for a project that only one per cent of the population will ever use, and for which only a madman would have given approval.

So the only sane thing to do is to take matters into our own hands, and take direct action to protect ourselves and our children.

Especially with regards to protecting our open spaces. Namely St James Gardens and Euston Square (part of the lungs of Camden) which, unbelievably, HS2 are about to destroy by pulling down the trees in both locations.

Indeed, trees will be destroyed all over the country.

Where is the sense in that when we already have unlawful levels of air pollution? They are taking away any opportunity we have of escaping the present filthy toxic air in Camden.

This too must surely be illegal, as HS2 contractors must be obliged to safeguard public health from PM10, and nitrogen dioxide, before any work starts.

And is it lawful for HS2 to have been given consent for a development which would worsen air quality, in an area which is already in breach of the law, regarding air pollution?

This must be challenged legally.

The gravity of the situation is shown, not only by the many eminent and distinguished voices of reason, who have all condemned HS2, but by Stop HS2 joining forces with the likes of Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, The Woodland Trust etc, against HS2!

Please Sign the Friends of the Earth petition: www.foe.co.uk/go/hs2.

It really is time to take action now.

Please come out, speak up, demand your rights, and show the government that we will not tolerate this abuse.
And bring back the spirit of Greenham Common, and Swampy.

MIMI ROMILLY
Parliament Hill Fields, NW5

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