Top Green Environmentalists Announced

From The Independent:-

“Britain’s most successful transport campaigner has come top of the first comprehensive list of the country’s most effective greens, compiled by The Independent on Sunday.

The little-known John Stewart, who leads the onslaught against a third runway at Heathrow, soundly beats far more high-profile figures – from Jonathon Porritt to Zac Goldsmith, from Sir David Attenborough to Prince Charles – to take the honour. He does so in the wake of an important breakthrough for his campaign – the announcement by the Conservative Party that it plans to scrap the runway in favour of high-speed rail links that would supplant short-haul flights.

The runners-up are also unconventional choices, not normally found heading such lists: Professor Robert Watson, the chief scientist at Defra; Jane Davidson , the Welsh environment minister; the broadcaster Monty Don; and the polar scientist Peter Wadhams. They, and the other greens on the list, were selected for the recent impact they have made rather than for their fame by a panel of judges from inside and outside this newspaper.

Indeed, a host of famous figures – including Prince Philip, David Bellamy, Professor James Lovelock and Richard Branson – who might have expected to be high on the list, were judged not to make the grade at all.The judges set out to identify who is really making a difference in Britain, either directly or by altering public perceptions, rather than those who make most noise. Unlike in some other lists, journalists were excluded from consideration.

Mr Stewart, who is also chair of the Campaign for Better Transport, took up aviation and Heathrow more than a decade ago after winning a successful campaign – as head of the pressure group Alarm UK – against the then Conservative government’s plans for a road-building drive hailed as the biggest since Roman times. Of an original 600 schemes, only 150 remained when John Major lost office in 1997, and the incoming Labour government cut those down to 50.

By then Mr Stewart had presciently begun to switch targets, forming a group called ClearSkies, then merging with, and radicalising, the gentlemanly Heathrow Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise (Hacan). His campaign has been so effective in getting the third runway to the top of the agenda that the judges unanimously selected him to lead the list even before the Conservatives’ announcement”.


When I was reading the Independent yesterday (which by the way, has improved a lot), he had a huge page dedicated to him. Many people have never heard of him. In fact, when I was at Anti Heathrow Runway event, I actually managed to interview him.

Caroline Lucas, another one on the Independent List, is another one I have met, living in so called ‘Stockbroker belt’. I think she’s very good. She is always ‘out there’ doing something. She has helped us in a lot of other activist issues abroad. David Cameron, well, all I know is that he rides a bike! I don’t know what his stand is on the environment at all. Whenever I see him, he is just rabbiting on about the credit crunch, you know ‘money’ – what tories love best.

If you want to see the full list, it’s easier just to google ‘green environmentalists+ independent on Sunday.

Whilst looking at the Independent, they have a cycling blogger called Cycletherapy. I have had a quick look and it is hardly ever updated and when it is, it goes on about ‘bicycle gadgets’ or the ‘usual stuff’ like Lance Armstrong. You may get the odd comment that doesn’t badger you to buy a helmet but it is a little dull for my liking!


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