A climate activist who crowdfunded a long-running legal challenge to block improvement projects on the A47 did not spend any of his own money on the campaign.

Dr Andrew Boswell raised almost £70,000 from members of the public to try to block the schemes through the courts, arguing their impact on the environment had not been properly considered.

However, he said he had not personally contributed to the costs. "It was entirely funded by the generosity of thousands of people," he added.

His legal challenges have already delayed the projects by almost two years and added tens of millions of pounds to their costs, as a result of inflation.

Eastern Daily Press: Diverting utilities is part of the work being done next to the A47Diverting utilities is part of the work being done next to the A47 (Image: Mike Page)

His latest case was dismissed by the Court of Appeal earlier this week, with judges saying it had "no logical basis" and that his argument had an "an air of complete unreality"

Despite this setback, the retired university academic said he was considering taking the case to the Supreme Court.

"I believe this case is of national interest," he added. "There is so much hype around climate change but our actual policies are a shambles.

"I am a scientist and all of my work is done on that basis. I am not doing anything just to be a contrarian. 

"The cost of climate change is greater than the cost of this case. There is big money needed to deal with coastal erosion, flooding, and other issues that make it impossible for people to live.

"I have given up three years of my life - that is part of the cost of this battle."

He added: “This case raises legal issues about how carbon emissions from infrastructure projects, like large new roads, should be assessed for their impact on our manifestly fragile climate system.

”We think the judgement is mistaken in setting out a flawed approach. Close to Norwich, four large road schemes, including the Norwich Western link, are planned for construction in the next few years, and these have never been properly assessed together and it is important that they are.

”They are estimated to generate over a quarter of a million tonnes of carbon dioxide over the next few years, just from the construction alone, not including the additional traffic and higher speeds.“

Eastern Daily Press: The A47 is due to be dualled between Easton and North TuddenhamThe A47 is due to be dualled between Easton and North Tuddenham (Image: Mike Page)

The projects involve dualling just over 1.6 miles of the road between Blofield and North Burlingham - considered an accident blackspot by police - along with 5.5 miles between Easton and North Tuddenham.

Plans for Thickthorn include a new slip road off the A11 northbound, which will take motorists beneath both roads before re-joining traffic on the A47 heading towards Great Yarmouth - eliminating the need to use the roundabout.

Preliminary work has already started on the schemes, which are intended to reduce congestion, improve safety and create an economic boost for the region.

But Dr Boswell, a former Green city and county councillor, argues that the projects will be environmentally damaging.

His legal cases rest on the argument that their cumulative impact on carbon emissions has not been fully considered.

Dr Boswell, who has unsuccessfully stood for parliament three times, lost at the High Court in May 2023, but took the case to the Court of Appeal and a hearing was held in January, with the ruling issued this week.

Dr Boswell refers to himself as an 'independent scientist' and has had an extensive career in academia, with a degree in chemistry and a doctorate in biophysics.

He worked at the UEA from 1995 to 2006 managing its computing research department.

It was work which saw him collaborating with scientific groups from across the campus to model global climate change and his research led to his activism.