It’s back after a break over over a year – the crazy anti HS2 campaigner of the week! To be honest, at this stage in the game it would be fair ro say that those left pretending they can somehow stop HS2 all fall into this category, so whilst the talent pool is more of a puddle, they all stand a chance of being featured. But this one is so deliciously bonkers as well as being a great illustration of how that’ll say anything it’s hard to beat. It’s actually Pythonesque! You’ll see why later…
A small new group has sprung up called ‘Greens against HS2’. It’s a panicked response to the success and growing influence of ‘Greens for HS2‘ who’ve done a very credible job influencing green party members by presenting them with reasoned and logical arguments. The difference between the two groups couldn’t be more marked. Those for HS2 stick to the facts and science around railways and climate change, reference their arguments and contain many experts in their fields. Those against rehash the same tired and trite disinformation and seem to be little more than individual party members with no experience or expertise in either climate science or transport or in some cases, reality!
The panic is due to the fact the Green Party is having its annual conference next week and (yet again) there’s a motion being put forward that the party ditches its hypocritical stance of supporting a new North-South high speed line ‘in principle’ but opposes it practice. That’s clearly crazy, but that’s not why I’m writing this blog. There’s something far more batshit and it’s dug up former Stop Hs2 organiser Joe Rukin to spin like a decaying top once more.
Take a look at this!
As usual, Rukin just can’t stop lying! A ‘chemical process’? What chemical process – unless you call mixing mud with water a chemical process as the slurry concerned is just that.
The leak at Ruislip was caused as a tunnel boring machine was tunnelling beneath an old borehole. Someone had forgotten to cap the borehole and a small amount of slurry foam escaped. The TBM was halted for a couple of hours whilst checks were made, then continued on its way. The borehole was sealed from the inside when the next ring of tunnel lining segments were put into place. It was a minor (if slightly embarrassing) moment. Note that the slurry escaped upwards to the surface, not outwards. The idea that this will pollute the aquifer and poison London’s drinking water is hysterical nonsense.
Here’s a link to the emergency motion, calling for “all HS2 operations around the Chiltern Aquifer to be paused”
‘StopHS2’ even tweeted out this handy little diagram pointing out where the incident allegedly occurred.
There’s one big problem they’ve neglected to mention. Guess which way these two TBMs are heading? Eastwards – away from the aquifer towards South Ruislip!In fact, by now they’re almost certain to be outside that blue coloured area! They’ve never been a credible threat to the aquifer, and now they’re even less of one! The emergency motion will be redundant before it’s even debated! Oops…!
Problem number two is that this ’emergency motion’ is nothing more than posturing. Even if the Green party accept it and even agree it, it’s nothing more than hot air. It’s as meaningful as Monty Pythons spoof ‘Popular Front for the liberation of Judea’ resolutions!
Let’s talk realpolitik for a minute. Truth be told, no-one really cares what the Green Party’s stance is on HS2 as the Green Party will never, ever hold the reins of power. They can pass as many resolutions as they like, but as long as they have no way of making them reality is it’s a waste of everyone’s time. The party has 1 MP and will never have any more. Opinion polls give them a rating of 5% nationally but that doesn’t reflect the reality of our First Past The Post (FPTP) electoral system which means they don’t stand a chance of beating anyone in any other seat. Sure, they may get a few more local Councillors in the May elections, but this is way above their political pay-grade.
If the Green party do finally change their hypocritical posture on HS2 the only thing it will do is give them back some of the credibility they’ve lost (especially with transport professionals) with their mad policy – and may attract back some of the members who’ve abandoned them in frustration over it. No-one’s stopping HS2 – construction of phase 1 is well advanced and no-one’s ever abandoned a project of this magnitude at this stage of the game, so why have a policy saying you’ll stop the unstoppable when all it does is make you look incredibly stupid. The ‘green’ party is in great danger of becoming known as the anti rail party as it’s allowed its headbanging wing to morph opposition to HS2 into opposition to Northern Powerhouse Rail also (see some of the nonsense put out by greens against HS2 for evidence of that).
Meanwhile, two other HS2 TBMs are now well over half their way through boring the 10 mile long Chiltern tunnels without any serious incident and with no pollution to any aquifers in the nearly 2 years they’ve been tunnelling. The other scare story HS2 antis trotted out was that sinking the piles for the Colne Valley viaduct ‘could’ have polluted an aquifer. There’s one problem there. That work’s been completed with all piles successfully sunk – without any problems. No Londoners have keeled over through drinking ‘poisoned’ water and no lakes and streams have been polluted. Soon the various Nimbys and faux ‘greens’ are going to have to cast around for new things to scaremonger about.
I’ve a small favour to ask…
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Meanwhile, at the Wisley Interchange upgrade (J10 on the M25) acres of trees have been felled, including over 20 Grade II (possibly II* – I’m unsure) individually listed specimens.
Any “tree protectors,” protest tunnels/camps, street theatre performers or faux greens posing for selfies sobbing next to tree stumps..? Any doctors inventing numbers for displaced critters based on (ahem) “studying” Google Earth images…?
Of course not, because it’s road scheme and not HS2. So that’s all right then.
(For full disclosure, I am in favour of said scheme as well as HS2 – I find myself not as “binary” as “all rail good, all roads bad.”)
They’re a bit like the locals who come knocking at your door outraged they are planning to build and Aldi or Lidl down the road! All the problems, the undesirables etc. Then it’s built and there they are popping in to get some milk “because it’s handy”..