Audit Committee report confirms overwhelming scale of environmental obstacles facing Heathrow expansion

Published on : Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Gatwick AirportGatwick Airport today said that the Environmental Audit Committee report lays out in stark detail the overwhelming environmental obstacles in the way of Heathrow expansion.

 

The report has identified the key issues of air quality, the impact of aircraft noise, and the cost to the public of surface access improvements as potential showstoppers for Heathrow.

 

Gatwick Airport CEO Stewart Wingate said:

 

“This is a highly significant intervention by the Environmental Audit Committee just days before the Government is expected to make its decision on airport expansion.

 

“The Committee questions the entire legal basis of the Airports Commission report on air quality and highlights the many other environmental hurdles facing Heathrow expansion.  

 

“It is increasingly clear only expansion at Gatwick is legal and can actually happen.”

 

The Audit Committee’s conditions go far further than those laid out by Sir Howard Davies in his report and which Heathrow has consistently backed away from. The Committee says that, for it to be allowed to expand, Heathrow must prove it can meet all of these conditions.

 

Heathrow, however, has not revealed how it intends to bring air quality within legal limits, has poured cold water on the issue of a night flight ban, and has said that it expects the taxpayer to pick up the bill for its £5 billion worth of surface access improvements.

 

Gatwick’s plan is the best and only deliverable solution to the question over where the UK’s next runway should be built – it delivers the same outcome for the UK but at a dramatically lower environmental impact, at less than half the cost of Heathrow, and with no public subsidy.

 

Source:- Gatwick Airport

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