We've all been there. You're at the party of a lifetime, getting down in a stylish and decorous manner, making eyes at someone across the room. Next thing you know, it's five hours later, you've woken in a pool of vomit and your hosts are looking at you with eyes that flit from hatred to pity and back again.
So it was for the Americans at Bali. Most of the delegates were partying responsibly, but rumours abounded that the Americans overdid it. A lot. So while the other representatives returned home with their tans topped up, the Americans woke on Sunday morning with foggy heads and a dim memory of having signed something. Something bad...
Sometimes you're lucky... For the recently formed Kernow and Plymouth Rising Tide groups, yesterday marked an escalation in their fight against climate change and for environmental justice. However the planned rooftop protest at Newquay airport was given an unlikely boost when builders at the airport left a ladder propped up...which was just as well because ours broke!
The problems started when James Connaughton, the senior US negotiator in Bali, declined to go on an afternoon sightseeing tour, and spent the time drinking heavily with the rest of the US delegation at the poolside bar. When the party returned they found the Americans passed out on the sun-loungers.
John McDonnell, MP for Hayes and Harlington, made clear that this was not going to be the last we hear of Heathrow in Parliament: "We shall apply regularly for debates on different aspects of the matter, so I warn the Minister not to plan any lengthy holidays next year, and certainly not to plan any via Heathrow".
Oh to have been in Parliament on Monday - although I'm not sure I'm allowed in anymore, given what happened last time...
The Government's Planning Bill - basically an attempt to prevent another Terminal 5 inquiry (the longest in British legal history) - was up for discussion, and MPs from all sides of the House chimed in to criticise Hazel Blears and her madcapped schemes to steamroller through public opinion.
In an earlier article, I talked about 'predict and provide', a pro-growth transport policy model which has lead to self-fulfilling and exponential growth in surface transport. In this article I'll be looking at the Government's argument that Heathrow must be expanded to meet the growing demand for air travel, and consider if this is a predict and provide approach.
Let's quickly recap on predict and provide. Officials make a prediction based on current growth rates, and extrapolate future data. It is presumed that this demand cannot be checked (because demand is caused by forces over which the Government has no control) and therefore the space for the demand to grow into is provided.