Stop road building that wrecks the climate and nature (A47BNB/Norfolk)

by Dr Andrew Boswell

Stop road building that wrecks the climate and nature (A47BNB/Norfolk)

by Dr Andrew Boswell
Dr Andrew Boswell
Case Owner
I am a Norfolk resident who cares passionately about the future of our precious county, our children and grandchildren.
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Dr Andrew Boswell
Case Owner
I am a Norfolk resident who cares passionately about the future of our precious county, our children and grandchildren.
Pledge now

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Latest: June 7, 2023

My legal cases and the "Not Zero Magic Show"

Thank you to everyone who has supported these vital legal cases all the way to Court -  Whilst we wait for the…

Read more

Stop road building that wrecks the climate and nature 

Help me stop the A47 between Blofield and North Burlingham scheme (A47BNB), the first of four destructive road schemes all close to Norwich (see map below).  It is important to prevent this first scheme now by supporting this legal case.  If the A47BNB goes ahead, then the Norwich Western Link and the other Norfolk A47 schemes may be unstoppable. 

The case challenges the government’s unlawful approach of allowing large road schemes to go ahead without cumulative assessment of carbon emissions - a win could help ensure proper climate impact assessment for proposed highway schemes around the UK.

The immediate threat

Four massive road building projects are poised to devastate countryside around the historic city of Norwich by 2025.  If built, they would destroy precious wildlife habitats, increase development pressures and generate more traffic 'needing' further road building. They make it impossible for Norfolk to cut its carbon emissions this decade, vital to tackling climate change.  If this challenge is successful, it would force the Government to re-consider other road building schemes in the pipeline.

With your help, we can stop this monumental level of destruction, both in Norfolk and across the UK.

On the River Wensum floodplain where 700m viaduct is planned for 2025   

The road building explosion around Norwich

The countryside close to Norwich remains largely unspoilt with many small villages, and peaceful places for walkers, tourists and residents.  But this could change rapidly in just a few years The A47 between Blofield and North Burlingham (A47BNB) is the first of an explosion of plans for new highways and roads-led development: it was recently given planning permission by the Government. 

Four destructive road schemes, close to Norwich, and planned by 2025 (RIS2 means entirely central government funding)

When one scheme gets planning permission, it becomes more likely that others will follow.  If the A47BNB goes ahead, it will be followed by the A47 dualling from North Tuddenham to Easton (A47NTE), the enlargement of Thickthorn junction (A47THI), and the Norwich Western Link (NWL), an entirely new road cutting through open landscapes with ancient woodlands and unique ecology.  These roads could be built by 2025, destroying communities, climate and nature, and flooding traffic into the area.  Norfolk County Council plan more schemes after 2025.  (See notes on these other schemes at the end)

This challenge is to the A47BNB in Norfolk

I am challenging the A47BNB as it breaks the government's own commitments on climate change. 

Some of the same lawyers who successfully took the Government to Court on its Net Zero Strategy are acting for me.  For more on this landmark climate judgement (July 18th 2022) see

What’s the impact on local people? 

Walking and access to services would be disrupted by a dualled A47BNB

The A47BNB has a damaging impact on local people. The dualled road would sever existing footpaths, disconnecting the villages of Lingwood and Burlingham. Pedestrian access to schools, the train station, buses, village hall, a recreation ground, and a post office would be lost for many residents as it will be impossible to cross a dual-carriageway with 70mph traffic.  

National Highways, the road builders, have refused to provide the community with any adequate compensation, such as a footbridge, and ignored a local petition of over 1000 signatures.

Carbon emissions and fuelling car dependent development

The A47BNB would increase carbon emissions just when the Government says we must reduce them.  The Government failed to properly consider the increased carbon emissions in approving the A47BNB.  A victory in this case would force the government to take a different approach and consider the cumulative impacts of road schemes when deciding whether to permit them. There are many other reasons to support our challenge as the A47BNB would:

  • lead to more development & more traffic in the countryside close to Norwich, and cause loss of valuable farm land
  • increase noise and pollution
  • lead to further road schemes around Norwich, all causing their own destruction
  • be a waste of money when we need both a serious investment in public transport, and financial resources to help those most affected by the cost of living crisis

More about me

I am a Norfolk resident who cares passionately about the future of our precious county, and our children and grandchildren.  I am a retired computer scientist from University of East Anglia, and an expert in climate change and the carbon emissions from road building.  I have worked with many transport and environmental organisations including Norwich Friends of the Earth, Stop the Wensum link campaign, the Green Party, CPRE Norfolk, Extinction Rebellion and Transport Action Network.  I dedicate my campaigning to my first grandchild born July 15th 2022, and his generation. 

How the funds will be used

I have engaged specialist lawyers who are very experienced in planning cases relating to climate change to challenge this road scheme. They have reviewed the Secretary of State’s decision on the A47BNB, and have submitted a pre-action protocol letter (see notes below for explanation of this) to the Government for me saying it has acted unlawfully. 

The initial target is £1,000 which can hopefully be quickly reached.  Then I will stretch it to around the £5,000 needed to cover the costs for this first stage, which will include developing the detailed legal arguments. When I proceed to file the case in the High Court, more funds will be needed with further stretch targets.  I will provide regular updates here of each stage.

Please support this challenge - so that this dreadful scheme can be stopped before it’s too late.

Please give whatever you can, and share this with as many people as you can. Thank you.

Notes on the other schemes in the map

Four destructive road schemes, close to Norwich, and planned by 2025

The A47/A11 Thickthorn scheme (A47THI) extends a large roundabout with a new underpass and enlarged slip-road, plus another new road some way from the roundabout.  It would increase the traffic in the area turning the rural tranquility around Norwich into an urban sprawl.  Higher levels of traffic would surge both east towards the A47BNB and west towards the A47NTE.

The A47 dualling from North Tuddenham to Easton (A47NTE) would place a dual-carriageway along the valley of the River Tud, a rare chalk stream habitat. The road is planned to run so closely to the Tud that it would destroy the tranquility of the valley, spoil the view from the network of ancient footpaths that run in this river valley, and sever two rights of way.

The Norwich Western Link (NWL) is a highly destructive scheme which would destroy the UK’s largest super-colony of barbastelle bats, and cross the River Wensum, also a rare chalk stream, protected as a Special Area of Conservation (SAC). This scheme is dependent on the A47NTE going ahead.

 For more on the NWL, see:

There are several other A47 schemes planned by Norfolk County Council after 2025.

What is a pre-action protocol letter?

This is the legal letter which my lawyers have already sent to the Government before we go to the next step of asking the Court for a judicial review.  It sets out our case at a high-level, and the Government will reply with their case.  It ensures that we understand each other’s positions and can help to decide next steps.   

Update 14

Dr Andrew Boswell

June 7, 2023

My legal cases and the "Not Zero Magic Show"

Thank you to everyone who has supported these vital legal cases all the way to Court -  Whilst we wait for the judgement from Mrs Justice Thornton, I'd like to share some thoughts on the wider implications below, and why realistic carbon assessment which these cases call for is so crucial on all projects (not just roads but power installations etc, see below).  Please continue to contribute to the legal fund if you possibly can.  The fund is still some way short of the costs of the superb legal team (see my last update reporting on the days in Court!).

At the end of March, the Government released its revised Net Zero Strategy (NZS) under the title Powering Up Britain (PUB).  The PUB/NZS claims to be the strategy to deliver the UK carbon budgets and our obligations under the Paris agreement.  However, it is completely inadequate for many reasons, some below.

First, the UK carbon budgets do not provide the emission cuts needed as a UK contribution to deliver the Paris agreement.  Instead the UK plans to use more than twice it's fair share of the available global carbon budgets; read Prof Kevin Anderson's Factor of Two paper for more on this.  So when considering the NZS as below, it is vital to realise that even if it 100% succeeded on its own targets and policies, the UK would still be hugely behind the curve on the emission reductions needed.

Second, whilst the NZS lays out emission reduction trajectories for each sector eg: domestic, industrial, agriculture, transport etc, it does not provide sectorial targets.  Instead, it assumes that an overshoot of emissions (ie policy failure) in one sector will be made up by even deeper emission cuts in another sector (yes, another sector doing better than policy!).  This is clearly fantasy land thinking from Department of Energy Security and Net Zero civil servants when each sector is deeply challenged to meet it's trajectory, and the policies are far from established or even worked out.

We know policy for emissions reduction in the transport sector has gone into Reverse Gear from Prof Greg Marsden. Policies for agriculture and land use emissions are 58% below those planned in the NZS.  Policies for insulation and electrification of domestic and industrial heating are behind too meaning we continue to rely on gas and oil.  

Where is the sector then which will come to the rescue?  Is is Power?  I think not.  In the last decade, the power sector did make the deepest cuts.  However, Govt policy (literally Powering Up Britain) is based on using gas and blue hydrogen as a transition.  Whilst we hear about offshore wind and solar, we don't hear much about the cynically planned lock-in to fossil fuels. (Offshore wind and solar has been successful but we need much greater ambition for it with a joined up policy for energy storage to avoid going down the route of gas and blue hydrogen, see for example  Recent research has shown that methane leakage is 5 times greater in UK produced gas than the statistics used in UK Govt energy modelling show.  See my recent submission on the Net Zero Teesside (basically a BP gas power plant with carbon capture) on why this means the Power sector will fail to decarbonise as planned . The Govt also now plan that ministers won't have to consider the operational emissions of such power plants so such failing policy won't be clear in the planning process.

Overall, the Govt plans are actually the "Not Zero Magic Show" and the magic tricks planned will fail us.

Third, all of this links back to how road schemes have been serially approved on the basis than their emissions don't count and the NZS will magically balance out the emissions with other sectors.  Take this statement from Secretary of State Mark Harper in a recent decision letter for the A47 Wansford to Sutton (not under challenge in my cases):

“The Secretary of State notes that the Net Zero Strategy has not been quashed and remains government policy. A new report is required to be produced in accordance with the order made by the Court as a result of that successful challenge. As things stand, the Secretary of State has no reason to consider that the Proposed Development will hinder delivery of either the TDP or Net Zero Strategy (whether in its current form or any future updated form).  ... Whilst the Proposed Development will result in an increase in carbon emissions, as set out above, Government is legally required to meet the carbon budgets which provide a pathway to net zero and like the ExA, the Secretary of State considers that the Proposed Development is consistent with existing and emerging national policies designed to achieve the UK’s trajectory towards net zero.”

The draft NNNPS (the planning document for road transport decisions, see would remove any genuine test on carbon emissions, making transport similar to the power sector where carbon emissions don't have to be taken into account.  Whilst, this has been current practice anyway, the NNNPS would codify this appalling approach which fails all of us now and our children in the near future.

My legal cases are so vital to ensure that proper carbon accounting is reflected in law, and that means cumulative carbon assessment too.  Please support the costs of the superb legal team at

Many thanks, Andrew
Update 13

Dr Andrew Boswell

May 22, 2023

Help save cumulative environmental assessment as a vital part of planning

Thank you to everyone who has supported my cases.  Mrs Justice Thornton heard the cases at the High Court on May 10th and 11th, and here is an update.

First of all, my legal team led by David Wolfe, Kings Counsel, made an absolutely superb case, and laid out why the law requires cumulative environmental assessment, and how it clearly was not done for carbon emissions for each of the three A47 schemes (including with the proposed Norwich Western link road) close to Norwich.  I was interviewed on Radio Norfolk on the morning of the first day, and this interview is worth listening to as it explains the details simply. 

However, it was astounding that in their case Government lawyers tried to uproot the principle established in case law that projects need to have cumulative environmental assessment when they are separate but related projects, as the schemes in these cases plainly are.  The Government tried to argue it all ways – first claiming that cumulative assessments had been done when, of course, they had not been.  And then claiming that such assessments would be optional - down to discretion - anyway.   As David Wolfe, KC said to the Court if these submissions from the Government were to be accepted then, in the future, it would completely undermine the assessment of cumulative impacts generally across the whole planning system – for all sizes and types of project, and not just for carbon emissions but all environmental issues such noise, biodiversity and air pollution.

As the Government try to scrap environmental law with the Retained EU Bill, my cases are now key to keeping cumulative environmental assessment as a vital part of the planning system.

The legal fund is still short of the money needed to pay the legal fees so far.  Through your great generosity, the fund is around two thirds of where it needs to be, so I have another £25,000 to raise to reach the £75,000 target.  Please donate more money to the legal fund if you possibly can.   Every donation helps defend cumulative environmental assessment from being scrapped as the Government apprears to want to do.

Update 12

Dr Andrew Boswell

May 9, 2023

TOMORROW: We are in Court 19 (Mrs Justice Thornton)

Just a quick update on the eve of tomorrow's Hearings on the cases.  The Court has just informed us that the Hearings will be in Court 19 at the High Court RCJ- Google Map. The Judge is Mrs Justice Thornton

I wish to thank everyone for the support so far.  These cases have brought many people together - over 1000 people have donated on this site - thank you.  We still have more to raise, and please donate (and donate again) if you are able to do so. 

If you wish to join us at the Court, there will be a gathering at 0930, Wednesday May 10th outside the Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand - map in link above.  If you wish to go into the Court for the hearing, please let me know of andrewboswell AT fastmail DOT co DOT uk just so I have an idea of numbers.  

If you wish to read my lawyer's skeleton arguments, please click here Skeleton

Huge thanks, all the best, Andrew

Update 11

Dr Andrew Boswell

May 6, 2023

Now just a few days until we go Court

My legal cases on transport carbon emissions go to the High Court NEXT WEEK.

Thank you for supporting these cases, and for the many donations made by well over 1000 people now.  I still need to raise further funds for the legal fund, so please donate again if you can (Link).  Thank you.

Do join us outside Royal Courts of Justice on Wednesday May10th at 0930 for a gathering before the hearings.  The RCJ are in the Strand (Map).  I am hoping that you may be able to come inside if you want to hear the court proceedings too.  Please contact me on Andrew DOT boswell AT fastmail DOT co DOT uk if you would like to do so, so I have an idea of numbers.

One update is that very recently National Highways produced a bat licence.  This is what the company had been unable to provide before the approval decision for the scheme last summer despite the presence of rare bats including barbastelles.  Whilst my legal team had prepared very strong arguments around whether the decision to approve a road such as the A47 Tuddenham scheme could ever be lawful in the absence of a bat licence, we have not be able take these legal arguments forward to the Court on this occasion.  This is disappointing as the arguments were general and would have helped with other similar development cases. Clearly, National Highways realised this in producing the required licence at the last minute to avoid the issues reaching the Court. 

Just a reminder that the cases relate to four large road schemes (three A47 schemes) around Norwich as in the map below, and include areas of high biodiversity, and the Wensum and Tud chalk stream rivers.

Update 10

Dr Andrew Boswell

April 24, 2023

BBC interview on the cases - "Sensible cases"

A very quick update here to share this recording of BBC Politics East where I speak on the legal cases.  As the Conservative MP Duncan Baker says in the interview toward the end of the clip "these are sensible cases" to require environmental assessment to be properly done.  

I am very grateful for all the support so far and my lawyers and I are preparing in the final submissions before we go to the High court on May 10th.  

Please share widely and donate to the legal fund if you can 👉

If you wish to go to the High Court on May 10th, please let me know on

Update 9

Dr Andrew Boswell

April 12, 2023

Breaking news - UK road building spree will derail UK net-zero target

Dear All,

!! Breaking news !!

The Guardian runs the story on that the UK road building spree will derail UK net-zero target.  The story based on some of my work which I wrote about in last week's update on the recently revised Net Zero Strategy.  Read more here:

(By the way, the article has got the headline figure wrong - it is a massive 130MtCO2 as I explained last week - I am trying to get article corrected).

We know how to stop this destruction, and protect our climate targets.  Stop building roads!

Thank you if you have already supported my legal cases which are all about stopping the carbon deceptions that prevail in every road planning decision.  Today my lawyers have submitted our full "skeleton" legal arguments to the Court, covering both bats and carbon, ready for May 10th/11th, and hugely detailed.  

We spent all day yesterday finalising the arguments and the work continues.  Please support the incredible work my legal team are doing.  

Please donate again if you can and help me stop the suicidal road building spree here:

Please forward to friends and family!

Many thanks

Update 8

Dr Andrew Boswell

April 4, 2023

STOP PRESS .. road transport has sunk UK pledge under the Paris agreement

Last week, the scale of the deception around UK road transport emissions became starkly clear.  My legal cases are all about challenging this deception and putting an end to it.  I am so, so grateful for all the contributions which you have already made and as my legal team move towards the Court hearing in just five weeks time, I ask you again that you give whatever support you can.  Many, many thanks.  

Sorry longer than usual, but I need to get a bit technical in this week’s update to explain why road transport emissions are literally trashing the UK's climate commitments under the Paris agreement.  Nearly 3000 pages across 45 documents, before lots of numbers in lots of spreadsheets, were released by the Government on March 30th -  in response to last year’s successful legal challenge against the Net Zero Strategy.  However, just the couple of extracts below show the extent of the issues with transport emissions – the sector already responsible for over one quarter of UK carbon emissions.  

Government technocrats got the baseline emissions for transport badly wrong in the NZS.  The only sector with significant changes in the new Carbon Budget Delivery Plan (CBDP) which seeks to meet the requirements of last summer’s legal judgement is transport, see this extract from the Powering Up Britain Technical Annex:

Together, these adjustments lead to an increase in baseline emissions of 4MtCO2e/year on average in the 4th Carbon Budget period, 9Mt/year for 5th Carbon Budget, and 13Mt/year in the 6th Carbon Budget period.

This shows that for the 15 years of the 4th, 5th and 6th carbon budgets (2023-2037), a massive 130 million of tonnes of CO2 has been added to the baseline – meaning that ambition for reducing emissions in the transport sector has had to be scaled down (see this tweet from the Chief Executive of the Climate Change Committee).   

130 million tonnes of CO2 is a very large miscalculation.  The amount of carbon is around the total annual economy carbon footprint of Nigeria (or the Phillipines, or the Netherlands) in 2020.

What does this huge change to the figures mean for UK Climate targets?  The CDBP explains the impact on the UK’s National Determined Contribution – our pledge to reduce emissions by 68% (from 1990 levels) by 2030 made at the Glasgow COP.  This promise is no longer possible to meet according to the CBDP:

What is striking is that the CBDP is short of around 8 million tonnes of CO2 emission reductions in 2030 which is less than the baseline adjustment for transport in that year of 9 million tonnes.  So the entire shortfall for our international obligation comes from the transport sector miscalculation.

Transport campaigners have said for decades that if transport emissions are not dealt with by serious policy, then other sectors will have to make deeper cuts to compensate.  Now we see that happening clearly.  Virtually all emissions reduction policy for transport is based around electric vehicles and increasing biofuels.  This is a prescription for failure as serious demand reduction and model shift is required too, but not happening (instead we see further devastation of public transport year on year), and EVs won't deliver a significant contribution in time to help with the 2030 and 2035 climate targets.

To meet our NDC under Paris, other sectors now have to find 8 million tonnes of emission cuts, originally promised by the transport sector, or we fail the international community.

What’s more, under the Paris agreement, the UK is expected to submit a new NDC in 2025.  How can the UK submit a more ambitious NDC when it can’t even meet the existing pledge?  Serious work in transport decarbonisation is needed now, this decade, to be able to submit a stronger NDC in 2025.  

Angry?  Despite, this utter failure, the UK Government continue to expand the roads programme which adds new emissions from construction and operation of faster roads carrying more traffic.  Only legal cases like mine can start to turn this around by requiring proper carbon assessment.  Please support the cases.

Update 7

Dr Andrew Boswell

March 29, 2023

Just six weeks from High Court hearing - Let's stop high-carbon road building

You are reading this because you know how important protecting our children's future is.  You may have already supported the cases -  a big Thank You if you have. These cases could change how road schemes are assessed for carbon emissions and protected species, and we are now just six weeks from the full High Court hearing.  

Turning around Government policy and practice is never more important after the IPCC report last week.  I've been reading the summary report and this graphic really moved me.  And it shows why climate litigation cases like these are so important.  Considerable warming is locked in even on the "very low" scenario, but the Government's policies are currently headed much more into the very dark red/purple area.  (see more)  

We have to rapidly bend the emissions curve down: that is why we have to start by not adding new unnecessary emissions from building unneeded roads.  Let's stop road building which wrecks nature and climate! 

My lawyers are working on the final arguments for Court, and I still have to raise more funds for their legal costs. Please continue to share this fundraiser link widely  Stop road building that wrecks the climate and nature (A47BNB/Norfolk) ( and please donate again if you can. I am very grateful for anything you can do to support these vital cases.  Huge thanks for all you have done already!


PS: Some other things to share

Update 6

Dr Andrew Boswell

March 20, 2023

IPCC delivers "final warning" - our work starts here

The IPCC has just published a "final warning" report, called by UN chief Antonio Guterres a "survival guide for humanity". 

The message cannot be clearer - Govts in rich nations must step up for the Climate now.  

Our work to get genuine climate action from our UK Govt starts here.  Thank you for your support for my legal cases for honest carbon assessment of road schemes.  I am thinking of the dire warnings of the IPCC report, as I write to ask for your help again.  

My lawyers will be Court for two days in May.  £75000 is needed to fund these cases, and to help this happen, please pledge again if you can, and even consider making a monthly or fortnightly pledge for the next crucial months.  Please consider also  

  • Share this facebook post on how badly the Govt is off track with its Net Zero Strategy with the transport sector being the worst
  • Retweet this tweet - also on the "Net Zero gap" in transport
  • Emailing five of your friends to asking them to support these cases too
  • Do say that you have pledged to encourage others!  

We know that until Govts are honest about how carbon emissions are assessed and accounted, they cannot make the real policy changes necessary.  Litigation via these legal cases is an effective tool to transform road policy.  Roads are effectively greenwashed through the planning system with the real climate and nature impacts being underestimated.   Here is a chart from last week's Green Alliance's Net Zero Policy tracker - transport in the biggest emissions sector, yet has least committed policy.

Thank you for your support! 

Update 5

Dr Andrew Boswell

March 10, 2023

Let's not allow the burning of our world to continue through bad decisons

My cases go to the High Court on May 10th and 11th, now just 10 weeks away, and my lawyers are busy drafting their skeleton arguments for the Court.  More funds are needed to support their vital expert work, so please donate if you can. 

This week’s update follows Mark Harper, Secretary of State for Transport announcing delays to several large road schemes in the second roads programme (RIS2) yesterday.    Whilst road campaigners have widely welcomed this, the decision was made solely on economic grounds – what Mr Harper called “headwinds”: inflation, the Ukraine war, and supply chain disruption.   

Like so much with this Government, the elephant in the room – the Climate Emergency - was ignored.  Mr Harper should have been thinking of the catastrophic impact on the climate that these schemes would have.  If he had, he would have cancelled them completely.  

The Government are acting in denial - as if they had never introduced the UK net-zero legislation.  They deny that carbon generating road schemes damage the climate and even claim that they don't impede delivering net-zero.  This is a false claim possible only because of the sneaky assessments of carbon emissions for road projects which systematically underestimate the climate impacts, and which I am legally challenging.    

For example, in my legal cases, four new big roads are planned close to Norwich which will dramatically increase carbon emissions, but the climate impacts have been deliberately underestimated for planning by considering each scheme in isolation.  As in this Guardian article, “You’ve got an ideal situation here where you should do a cumulative [carbon] assessment … but they have gone to every length to salami-slice it and look at each scheme’s emissions separately.

My cases show this breaches the law, and it is happening on every scheme in planning in the UK, so the cases supported by this crowdfunder are of national importance: if successful, they would put an end to this deliberate downplaying of the impact of road building on climate change.

Our atmosphere is already overloaded with carbon emissions. We simply cannot afford any additional emissions if we are to avoid ever-increasing climate change impacts such as the heatwaves and wildfires experienced last summer, and on-going droughts affecting food production. This means the carbon emissions from each new road scheme must be properly assessed, and please donate to my cases to help make this happen.

Let's not allow the burning of our world to continue through bad decisons.  Thank you

Update 4

Dr Andrew Boswell

March 4, 2023

We are in Court soon - Give bats and carbon a day in Court

The High Court hearing on the three A47 cases to protect the climate and nature from road building is now very close.  Although the Court set dates of May 10th and 11th, National Highways recently have applied for a Court order for an earlier date. 

This could make it harder for my legal team, but my lawyers are working flat out to ensure we are ready to do everything we can to win this case whenever the hearing is held.   Preparing the final arguments for the cases is incurring considerable costs, and please donate whatever you can today to help see these cases succeed in the High Court.  

My previous updates have largely been on how these cases highlight that the assessment of carbon emissions for new roads is deeply flawed, allowing schemes impacting the delivery of the UK climate targets to get nodded through.  In the Climate and Nature emergency,  has got to stop ... now ... and thank you for your support in getting the cases to this point on carbon.

However, did you know that we also have a legal ground about whether decisions on such large infrastructure projects are protecting rare species and complying with the Habitats Regulations as they should?   This is because the Secretary of State also nodded through the A47 North Tuddenham to Easton scheme in the absence clear evidience that it would not severely impact the rare barbastelle bat (see note at end for more on these bats).  

This is what the Secretary of State said when approving the scheme in August 2022:

However, Natural England has said the scheme did not satisfy the vital Favourable Conservation Status test in December 2021.

And then, when asked days before the decision if they could say that there were no impediments to a bats licence being issued to allow construction of the scheme, Natural England said the following:

Despite this, the decision to nod the scheme through was made.  I believe that this is unlawful and breaches law for planning decisions on large infrastructure to comply with the Habitats Regulations.  Please donate whatever you can today to help my lawyers get this decision turned over in the High Court.

Notes of barbastelle bats:

The barbastelle bat is on the red list of endangered species and is listed as near threatened. Little is known about this bat and there are few sightings of it. Its range is limited to Southern and Central England and Wales and there are an estimated 5000 individuals.  Read more here 

The bats in my case above, at risk from the A47 road, are from the same super-colony of barbastelle bats threatened by the close-by close by Norwich Western Link road.

Update 3

Dr Andrew Boswell

Feb. 14, 2023

Some good news .. let's keep the pressure on for proper carbon appraisal

My A47 cases are heading for the High Court in May.  Thank you to all of you who have supported these vital cases for climate and nature.  My lawyers are carefully reviewing the responses from the Government, and I need to more than double the funds raised so far for the cases.  I recently updated the target to £50,000 to reflect the current funding needs, although more than that is needed overall.  

This update has a couple of pieces of related good news below.  Please give what you can to help these cases succeed and change how the Government appraises road schemes for climate and nature.   

Here are the good news items ... 

First, the Welsh Government made the landmark announcement today that dozens of roads projects are to be scrapped following a series of tough tests on their impact on climate change.  Read more here: Welsh road building projects stopped after failing climate review.  The UK Government lags massively behind the clear thinking of the Welsh Government which has placed the climate and ecological emergency at the heart of decision making.  However, if successful, my cases will require the UK Government to consider climate change properly in their decisions too. 

Second, last month after months of prevarication the DfT finally responded to an Freedom of Information request from Prof Greg Marsden for the calculations underpining the Government Transport Decarbonisation Plan (TDP).  Prof Marsdem has published some thoughts on his initial analysis here:  The route to Net Zero: DfT assumptions look well off course.

All last year when I was giving evidence to the planning examinations on various road schemes, the incredible claim being made by road promoters was that the TDP would deliver all the necessary carbon savings to meet net zero.  Or in other words ... we can continue to build roads and the TDP will sort out the carbon.  The graph below has become known as the "fuzzy" graph, and road promoters were saying because the glossy TDP policy document exists with this graph that ... hey presto ... the road system would switch from the blue to green paths.   

From this FoI response, we now can be sure that there is no inevitable success for the TDP,  and that the UK is already so off track on Transport Behavioural Factors and roll-out of electric vehicles, that the TDP is at a very high risk of not delivering the first stage to 2035.  As Prof Marsden's article says "We are already behind the game and the implications of a past decade of inaction means the Carbon chickens have well and truly come home to roost.

These examples show we are winning in making the case for proper carbon appraisal. Please help my cases win too, and give what you can to help.  

Thank you, Andrew


Update 2

Dr Andrew Boswell

Dec. 14, 2022

UPDATE / BREAKING NEWS: My Judicial Review cases have just got permissions

Dear Friends,


My Judicial Review cases have just got permissions to go to the next stage of a full Judicial Review from Judge Holgate this afternoon.  Thank you everyone who helped my crowdfunder: your generosity and dedication to protecting nature and climate got us this far.  Pleased share this success widely on your networks.  Together, we have achieved this first stage.  

Now we need to build for the full hearing in Court next year, do celebrate this success and support my crowdfunder if you can for the next steps:

The cases for the three Norfolk A47 schemes will be joined into one case for the High Court, and grounds on both 1) no cumulative assessment of the climate impacts of the carbon assessment**  and 2) that the bat licencing relating to the Norfolk super-colony of barbastelle bats was not done correctly will now be heard in the High Court.

** Last week, we had the carbon deception of the Govt ploughing ahead with the Cumbria coal mine.  Carbon deceptions happen daily in the way these road schemes are assessed, smaller but they add up: only a relatively small figure of carbon just for the scheme, calculated in isolation, is compared against the whole national carbon budget.  

My cases seek to make it very clear in law that road schemes need to be assessed cumulatively. This is vital to tackling climate change and getting the Government to take the right actions for decarbonisation of transport.     

This crowdfunder at supports all three cases.  

I am very grateful for your continuing support.  

Many thanks, Andrew


Update 1

Dr Andrew Boswell

Nov. 6, 2022

As Govts meet at COP27 & 1.5degrees is lost: deceptions at all levels must stop

Thank you for your interest in this legal case.  Here is an update.  Some exciting news - the case is now three cases against all three A47 schemes near Norwich, and we are moving towards a hearing in the High Court to get permission for a Judicial Review covering all three case.   Support from this site has helped me get this far, now we need another push to get to the full hearing probably in the new year.  Please help by donating again if you can.

Here is a bit more about the cases as Govts meet at COP27 and even the Economist said that the 1.5degrees target under the Paris agreement is lost.

This means deceptions at all levels must stop.

Currently the UK Govt is expanding both the supply side and demand side of the  fossil fuels production and consumption.

They want to expand supply with new oil/gas exploration and extraction.  Just Stop Oil are right, this is the wrong policy and should cease immediately.

But the demand side is bad too.  The Govt want to build more high-carbon infrastructure, locking in fossil fuel consumption into the economy.   (Electric vehicles won't reduce emissions rapidly enough). 

This is how the Government is deceiving us on carbon emissions in transport.  When road schemes are assessed for their climate impact, the scheme is always considered in isolation. This seriously underestimates the real climate impacts. It ignores the cumulative impact of lots of schemes being put forward at the same time, sometimes on the same area.

Consider this example, this case.  Currently four road schemes are being brought forward close to Norwich, each increasing traffic and emissions

However each scheme has been put through planning in isolation, assessing only its environmental impacts.  The total impact is never considered.

I now have legal challenges against three of these schemes in the High Court saying they should all be assessed together.  Considering them in isolation is unlawful. 

The legal cases are building momentum and we are due to go to Court in the next month to get permission for the full Judicial Review hearing across all three schemes (ie treating them as one case).

Please help me fund this case at this critical point, help me get the case all the way to the High Court.

Please back the legal case to  here👉

Let's stop this deception which is trashing our climate.

Please forward and share, Andrew 🙏🙏

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