Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Wanna stop snowballs now, wanna go home

Tim suggests a reason for the Commission getting shirty with the aiports and the whole transport chaos that is engulfing Western Europe,
Would it be impolite of me to point out that the European officials, European Commission and Siim Kallas are all highly likely to be trying to use that closed Brussels airport to get home for the holidays?

Economic tradeoffs about extreme and rare weather be damned when it’s only the taxpayers’ money being wasted to reunite a politician with his Saturnalia Feast, eh?
But of course there are reasons for the chaos.

Obviously the prime cause of the trouble is the snow, and wintery weather. In winter.

So why are the airports unable to cope? Take a look at this little press release from the Commission, from all of a month or so ago,
European Commission Vice-President Siim Kallas, responsible for transport, today commended Brussels Airport for its commitment to reducing future carbon emissions. At a ceremony held in the departure hall of the airport, Vice-President Kallas presented Mr Arnaud Feist, CEO of Brussels Airport, with a certificate marking its progress under an industry-led carbon accreditation scheme.
He larded Mr Arnaud with plaudits,
But now he is annoyed, annoyed that as I mentioned yesterday Zaventum Airport has closed,
"Airports must get serious about planning for this kind of severe weather conditions. We have seen in recent years that snow in Western Europe is not such an exceptional circumstance. Better preparedness, in line with what is done in Northern Europe, is not an optional extra.
The thing is Siim, that if you spend all that time and money promoting the idea that we are all going to fry, if you start to hand out awards to airports for concentrating on global warming, then don't be surprised if that is what they do, and fail to concentrate on reality, which is that we still get winters.

So will you please stop hassleing the transport companies, who I suspect have had it up to their eyeballs with your unsolicited advice, and let them get on with the job of trying to get the continent moving again,.

This, I can sssure you will not help,
The European Commission is monitoring the situation very closely and is in constant touch with airlines, airports, rail operators and national authorities responsible for passenger rights.

"Sustainability is not an 'optional extra' in transport policy. It has to come as standard." He congratulated ACI Europe on the success of its Airport Carbon Accreditation Scheme, and welcomed the progress made by Brussels Airport in reducing on a voluntary basis to reduce its carbon emissions over time.

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