Insulate Britain activists who have ground major roads to a halt this year have pledged to continue their disruptive protests into 2022.
It emerged last night that stunts by the group, which demands the Government insulates all UK homes by 2030 to cut carbon emissions, cost police at least £4.3million.
Such a figure would be enough to insulate about 3,500 homes around the country.
Today, the group was urged by LBC host Andrew Castle not to continue its protests into the new year.
He told campaigner Zoe Cohen: ‘Don’t come back. Don’t inconvenience people because someone is going to get killed or run over, and that is a serious concern. Don’t do it.’
Ms Cohen did not confirm or deny the group’s plans when quizzed, but insisted that supporters ‘are getting together to decide what to do next’.
And a High Court hearing this month was told there was ‘intelligence’ suggesting activists will resume their demonstrations in the spring of 2022.
Insulate Britain climate activists block the anticlockwise carriageway of the M25 between Junctions 9 and 10 in September
It emerged last night that stunts by the group, which demands the Government insulates all UK homes by 2030 to cut carbon emissions, cost police at least £4.3million
She said in response to Mr Castle today: ‘I think your children and grandchildren will have something to say about that.
‘What are you doing to stop this? We need massive, massive system change. What are you doing as a journalist with a much bigger reach than me to change this?
‘Please educate yourself about the reality of the science and tell your listeners about it day in day out and then you can look your grandchildren in the eye.’
On the same radio station this afternoon, Ken Marsh, chair of the Met Police Federation hit out at the protesters for endangering officers as well as themselves.
‘I don’t know how anyone can think it’s value for money in terms of what my colleagues have had to do,’ he told LBC.
‘We obviously police without fear or favour and my colleagues do what they’re told to do if it’s lawful. What they had to do was absurd, dangerous, at times putting their lives at risk. It is just beyond belief.
‘It’s not rocket science, a 70mph car and a human being: you know who’s going to win. If these people want to behave in that way I could explain other ways to do it so they don’t put my colleagues at risk because it’s not fair and it’s not acceptable.
‘I have no problem with lawful demonstration, none whatsoever, none of my colleagues do. But if you want to put my colleagues at risk and cost millions of pounds in taxpayer’s money, it’s ridiculous.
‘If my colleagues weren’t there, God knows what would have happened to these individuals. At times we were actually proteting them, which is the most absurd scenario you could ever create.
‘The legislation in this country needs to be changed far quicker than it’s being changed. The Home Secretary has a lot more power and can deal with things a lot quicker so that we can then deal with these.
‘If an individual wants to come back [and protest again] then lock them up, simple as that, because they’re not taking note of what’s being said to them.’
Climate activists from the group Insulate Britain stop a car from driving towards them as they block a street in central London in October
Campaigner Zoe Cohen did not confirm or deny the group’s plans when quizzed, but insisted that supporters ‘are getting together to decide what to do next’
Earlier in December, seven Insulate Britain protesters were ‘surprised’ to have been spared jail for blocking roads – including a priest who told a judge she would go straight back to demonstrating if she walked free.
Lord Justice Dingemans and Mr Justice Johnson handed down sentences at the Royal Courts of Justice in London after National Highways took legal action against protesters.
Dr. Diana Warner, 62, who previously failed to attend court while she blocked a train heading for Drax power station, accepted her guilt and was given a two month prison sentence.
Dr. Ben Buse, 36, who has served 28 days of a four month sentence on an earlier charge of contempt of court, was ordered to serve a further 30 days consecutively.
The remaining seven defendants all walked free from court with suspended sentences.
It comes as Freedom of Information figures reveal the Metropolitan Police spent £3.1million on staff costs for Insulate Britain’s stunts from September to November, with a further £600,000 spent on deploying vehicles and £300,000 on overtime.
More than 6,600 Scotland Yard officers were involved in dealing with the disruption over several weeks.
Four other forces that assisted spent more than £300,000 solely on overtime, meaning the actual figure for policing protests in their areas was considerably higher.
It costs roughly £1,250 to insulate a four-bedroom detached house, meaning that almost 3,500 could have been insulated for the same price.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said he was appalled by the cost to the taxpayer and senior police officers described the figures as ‘disgusting’.
Insulate Britain declined to make further comment when approached by MailOnline.