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(en) afed.cz: An absurd plan in every way -- Kolektová's commentary on the plan for the expansion of Ruzyne Airport. [machine translation]

Date Thu, 21 May 2020 10:52:56 +0300

Prague ---- On Thursday, May 14, we took part in a demonstration in Prague in front of the Ministry of Finance building organized by the Extinction Rebellion initiative against the expansion of Prague Airport, into which the government wants to pour a total of 55 billion crowns. In a context where 70% of airports are already used by foreign tourists and Prague is already overloaded with tourism, this does not make sense at all. ---- The growing flood of tourists in Prague is causing not only numerous problems for the inhabitants of the city center, but also huge pressure on the real estate market. Because of platforms like Airbnb, tenants have to compete with tourists together. As we know, in this unequal battle, tourists and many Praguers are winning to leave their homes to short-term visitors. Gradually, flats in the long-term rental market are declining, rents are rising and real estate prices are rising.

Giving 55 billion for the unnecessary development of tourism at a time when so many people are addressing existential needs, is not only absurd but also vulgar. For example, the money could help solve the housing crisis, which will return in full if the government does not finally enforce the law on social housing and does not start investing in this area.

The plan to expand the airport is also meaningless in the context of the fight against global warming, which requires the Czech Republic to reduce emissions. At the same time, they are already so high that the average population of the Czech Republic is the fifth largest in the EU, the twentyth largest polluter in the world.

Airports are not an infrastructure for everyone. It is mainly a source of profit for those who profit from mass tourism at the expense of other inhabitants of the city. Locals do not use air transport much. Only 10 percent of those who can afford to go on vacation fly on vacation.

In a country where many people do not have stable housing and where air pollution is a serious problem, investment in air transport is unacceptable.
* * *
Let us add that the mayors of the Prague-Nebušice and Prague-Suchdol districts, which are severely affected by the operation of the airport, also spoke at the demonstration, which was attended by fifty people. Extinction Rebellion activists ended the event by smearing the ministry in red and attaching a "Ministry of Billionaires Rescue" sign to the entrance. The police forcibly detained three participants in the event.

Related links:
Photo report: Money for the landscape or the air? The first post-crown demo
Money for the country, not for the air. Activists protested against the expansion of the airport

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