Following protests in Europe last week staged against private aviation, similar events on a lesser scale disrupted activities at several U.S. airports in California, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Washington state. The protests took place last Thursday as world leaders gathered in Egypt for the United Nations Climate Change Conference, and in the wake of several high-profile flight shaming instances.
The peaceful demonstrations in the U.S.—which included activist groups Extinction Rebellion and scientists from affiliated organization Scientist Rebellion—targeted airports with high private aviation traffic, including dedicated general aviation enclaves such as New York City-area Teterboro Airport and Van Nuys Airport in Los Angeles.
These demonstrations resulted in arrests at several locations, including at the Wilson Air Center FBO at Charlotte/Douglas International Airport, where some participants chained themselves to airport access gates. Among those detained on charges of misdemeanor trespassing was NASA climatologist Peter Kalmus, who, according to the New York Times, was careful to note that his personal opinions should have no reflection upon his employer.
At Teterboro Airport, approximately two dozen protestors temporarily blocked the main entrance at one of the country’s busiest private aviation hubs for several hours until arrests were made, while at King County International Airport/Boeing Field in Seattle, a similar number encamped outside the Signature Aviation FBO. At Van Nuys, activists blocked the NetJets parking lot entrance.