When Extinction Rebellion activists stormed Leeds last month, their blockade of a city centre road caused heavy traffic and disruption to motorists for several days.
Now, it has been revealed through a Freedom of Information request that the protest also came at a price for police, with the West Yorkshire force spending close to £200,000 on policing the environmental demonstration.
Extinction Rebellion protests cost West Yorkshire Police nearly £200,000
It maintains it deployed a proportionate number of officers to manage the protest and minimise the impact on communities
and businesses. However, some will lament the cost.
Critics will likely deem the bill to be totally unacceptable, particularly given the well-documented pressures faced by stretched-forces across the country and the numerous policing priorities, including violent crime, that are competing for cash and resources.
Here’s why we should heed Extinction Rebellion protesters over climate change – Yorkshire Post letters
Yet, some consideration must be given to the environmental context, too.
Fires are surging through the Amazon rainforest, leaving a path of destruction in their wake, and earlier this week, the mercury rose to 33C in the UK to make Monday the hottest late August bank holiday on record.
Given this, there will be others who believe any cost, to police, or other authorities, is a small price to pay if it means drawing policy makers’ attention to the matter of climate change and potentially prompting action to halt it.
Leeds Extinction Rebellion protesters should demonstrate in China: Yorkshire Post Letters
With further protest action, including a climate strike in Leeds, planned next month, questions will likely continue to be asked over whether or not the bill can be justified.