To: media covering Oxford
From: Jessica Upton, Extinction Rebellion Oxford
7th January 2021
Press Release for Immediate release
CHRIS PACKHAM LEADS PETITION EFFORT TO STOP HS2
Chris Packham, leading TV naturalist and presenter, has launched a major petition campaign to stop High Speed Rail 2(1). Supporters of Extinction Rebellion in Oxfordshire have been amongst those actively involved in campaigning against what is the most environmentally-damaging development currently occurring(2). Apart from wrecking 108 ancient woodlands, the HS2 project will actually add to carbon emissions over time. HS2’s substantial costs will reduce funds available for re-opening disused rail lines and continuing the electrification of the rail system.
Jessica Upton comments for Extinction Rebellion Oxford:
“I’m very pleased to hear Chris Packham announce a petition to get HS2 stopped. The money being squandered on the white elephant that is HS2 should be used for re-opening disused lines (eg from Oxford to Witney)(3) and the full electrification of the rail system. Public transport use is very low at present and the Government needs to be putting in place better public transport options for after the covid crisis. It should not be funnelling the funds into environmentally destructive high speed train line. Our Oxfordshire community has very limited use for HS2 yet our taxes are paying a heavy price towards it. Estimates of eventual cost suggest that HS2 could cost over £100bn or over £300 million per mile of track(4).”
Further information: Jessica Upton on 07930 807849 & Anne Taylor on 07817 267853. Contact address for this release Extinction Rebellion Oxford c/o 53 Bulan Road Oxford OX3 7HU. https://www.xroxford.org/ Direct email for XR Oxford is XROxford@gmail.com Twitter: @XR_Oxford
- Basic details of petition: “Stop work on HS2 immediately and hold a new vote to repeal the legislation. We ask Parliament to repeal the High Speed Rail Bills, 2016 and 2019, as MPs voted on misleading environmental, financial and timetable information provided by the Dept of Transport and HS2 Ltd. It fails to address the conditions of the Paris Accord and costs have risen from £56bn to over £100bn.” The petition has attracted over 74,000 signatories at the time of writing.
- The national campaign on HS2 is: http://stophs2.org/ See facts on HS2 on this site.
- See the Witney-Oxford Transport site for more information: https://witneyoxfordtransport.org.uk/