Airports Commission backs Heathrow 3rd runway
Plane Stupid were very disappointed to hear the announcement from Sir Howard Davies this week that the Airports Commission unanimously backs a third runway at Heathrow.
The worst part is that Sir Howard seems to have completely fudged the climate change implications.
Here's a reminder why airport expansion is a terrible idea:
- We cannot meet our climate change targets and build new runways at the same time. It's a choice between the two. This should be very simple to understand.
- We already fly more than any other country per head.
- Nine of the ten most popular destinations out of Heathrow are short-haul including to places such as Manchester and Paris. There are already very good existing rail alternatives that we should be using instead.
- 15% of the UK population take 70% of the flights. Building new runways will only benefit rich frequent flyers who are burning the planet for unnecessary leisure flights.
- Airport expansion will have terrible implications for noise pollution and air pollution.
- Local communities face being wiped off the map entirely by a third runway at Heathrow.
- Aviation gets huge tax subsidies and pays no VAT. Why are we propping up an industry which is highly damaging to the environment at the exact time we need to be reducing our carbon emissions?
- The huge advertising budgets of the aviation industry have tricked the public into believing we face an airport capacity crisis.
- Additionally, the employment benefits of expansion have been overplayed. Claims that airport expansion will create thousands of new jobs are based on unreliable statistics. Airport expansion actually results in more UK tourists going abroad, which creates a ‘tourism deficit’.