Traffic at Berlin Brandenburg Airport stopped for roughly an hour yesterday for an unusual reason…
Climate activists breach Berlin Airport runway
On Thursday, November 24, 2022, Berlin Brandenburg Airport (BER) had to stop all traffic, after several people gained unauthorized access to the airfield. Specifically, climate activists with Letzte Generation (which translates to “Last Generation” in English) climbed through a perimeter fence of the airport, and then rode their bikes around the runways, and even glued themselves to the tarmac.
This was part of the group’s effort to get the public to stop traveling by air, and for the government to stop subsidizing it. The protestors had informed the police of their intent to do this. All the protestors were eventually detained. Even then the airport didn’t immediately reopen, as the runways and taxiways had to be checked by staff, to make sure there were no further people.
Last week, the same group blocked off access to Berlin Brandenburg Airport, by sitting on one of the main roads leading up to the facility.
The group’s protests aren’t just limited to airports and roads, though. The same group also recently interrupted a Beethoven concert.
Then just a few weeks ago, the group threw mashed potatoes at a Monet painting that had sold for $110 million.
This… isn’t accomplishing much?
I can appreciate that these climate protestors have sincerely held beliefs and probably intend to do good. However, I’m not sure that their approach is accomplishing a whole lot, and if anything, I think it’s counterproductive:
- By shutting down Berlin Airport they probably increased total emissions, as planes had to circle and divert, increasing the amount of time they have to fly
- While I think we can mostly agree that reducing emissions is good, telling people to completely stop flying probably isn’t a message that’s going to resonate with people
- This group’s goal seems to basically be to destroy anything possible to make a point, even if it has nothing to do with the environment — “Oh you’re mad we threw mashed potatoes at a painting? Well, how about climate change?”
- I feel like this is one of those situations where “you get more flies with honey than with vinegar,” but that’s not the approach the group is taking
Berlin Brandenburg Airport shut down on Thursday after climate protestors climbed through an airport perimeter fence, and then rode their bikes around the runway, and glued themselves to taxiways. This is the latest action taken by Germany’s Letzte Generation climate change group. I imagine this won’t be the last time that a German airport is subjected to these kinds of protests.
What do you make of this protest that shut down Berlin Airport?