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Airports Commission data shows the UK has NO urgent airport capacity crisis

While the endlessly repeated publicity from the airports and airlines, and their lobbyists, has succeeded in getting most people in the UK to believe there is some sort of airport capacity crisis, the reality is different. The Airports Commission has been given the task of looking at this alleged shortage of airport capacity, and understanding it in detail. While the Commission’s interim report in December said the “UK requires one net additional runway in south east by 2030″ they add that the “UK does not have a connectivity crisis today.” The Commission has produced several charts to illustrate this, and says many more could be produced showing how well served the UK is, by different measures. Their charts illustrating short haul destinations by country show the UK far ahead of European rivals; UK 2nd only to Germany on long haul destinations;  UK first  in Europe for long haul services (now overtaken by Dubai); London far ahead of European rivals by destination for both cities and countries. The UK really is better connected than its rivals, and the Commission say there is “Little evidence of a significant downward trend in UK/London connectivity.”
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UK shown by the green line in the charts below

Airports  Commission short haul destinations by country


 

Airports Commission long haul destinations by country


 

 

Airports Commission long haul services by airport

 

 


 

Airports Commission total destinations by city

 


 

Airports Commission total destinations by country

From Airports Commission power point presentation given on 17th March 2014.

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17 December 2013 — Press release

Airports Commission publishes interim report

The independent review concludes that there is a need for 1 additional runway to be in operation in the south east of the UK by 2030.

Airports Commission: interim report

The interim report from the Airports Commission into airport capacity and connectivity in the UK.

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Boris claims there is a ‘political fix around Gatwick’ while he makes last pitch to Airports Commission for estuary airport

Boris has now submitted his dossier to the Airports Commission, in support of his plan for a massive hub airport in the Thames estuary. The Commission had given Boris extra time in which to address critical questions concerning his plans. Boris claimed that the government was edging towards giving Gatwick the go-ahead, saying there was “a political fix around Gatwick”. He said, in all parties: “A lot of money is moving off Heathrow and on to Gatwick. Heathrow is closer to the answer but not deliverable. Gatwick is more deliverable but it is not the right answer.”  He said, expanding Gatwick was “a sham, a snare, a delusion”. Boris hopes his estuary airport could be built for about £25 billion, with £25bn more for surrounding transport infrastructure, and £14 billion more to buy and close Heathrow, which would be redeveloped as a new suburb.  Boris makes the usual claims about jobs and growth of the economy, and gives no thought at all to the fact that two new runways cannot be fitted within UK carbon targets. Boris’s evidence from the CAA shows a 3rd Heathrow runway would bring the number of people exposed to severe aircraft noise to more than a million. Utterly unacceptable.

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UK airport expansion: Boris Johnson claims ‘political fix around Gatwick’

Thames estuary airport more efficient in long term, says London mayor, who described expanding Gatwick as ‘a delusion’
  •  Boris Johnson about to board a plane
Boris Johnson: ‘A lot of money is moving off Heathrow and on to Gatwick … Gatwick is more deliverable but it is not the right answer.’ Photograph: Stefan Rousseau/PA

A “political fix” is putting Gatwick airport in pole position to get a new runway, London mayor Boris Johnson claimed, as he appealed to theAirports Commission to take a longer view and reconsider building a new hub.

The mayor has submitted a new dossier to the commission, which had made its scepticism over his favoured plan of a Thames estuary airportproject clear but revised its timetable to allow Johnson to address critical questions.

Johnson said it was time to stop “making do” and haphazardly expanding existing airports, adding: “We must ensure that the final outcome is not one that future generations will regret.”

The mayor claimed the government was edging towards giving Gatwick the go-ahead, saying there was “a political fix around Gatwick”. He said, in all parties: “A lot of money is moving off Heathrow and on to Gatwick. Heathrow is closer to the answer but not deliverable. Gatwick is more deliverable but it is not the right answer.”

He said, expanding Gatwick was “a sham, a snare, a delusion”.

Johnson’s favoured inner Thames estuary airport plan, promoted by architects Foster and Partners, would cost about £25bn to build, with £25bn extra needed for surrounding transport infrastructure, and an additional £14bn to purchase and shut down Heathrow, which would be redeveloped as a new suburb.

However, the mayor’s team claim much of this money could be raised from the private sector, while new infrastructure would be an inevitable government spend to meet the needs of an expanding population in east London, whether or not a new airport was built.

The Thames estuary case focuses on London’s forecast growth, to 11.3 million people by 2050, and the additional jobs and homes moving the hub airport could produce. The submission claims the new hub would generate £7bn a year in economic benefits and would be commercially viable with a relatively modest increase in landing charges – rejecting the Airports Commission’s estimates that the cost of building in the Thames estuary would mean fees triple those at Heathrow, driving up fares.

Foster and Partners' artist impression of a four-runway Thames estuary airport capable.

Foster and Partners’ artist impression of a four-runway Thames estuary airport capable. Photograph: Foster And Partners/PA

 

Johnson’s latest evidence included studies conducted for Transport for London by the Civil Aviation Authority showing that a third runway at Heathrow would bring the number of people exposed to severe aircraft noise to more than a million, with areas from Kensington to Deptford caught within its noise contour. Referring to recent comments made by a Heathrow board member and major shareholder, Qatar Holdings’ Akbar Al-Baker, that locals would get used to plane noise, the mayor said: “Mr Al-Baker very brilliantly highlighted both the problem and the solution. Many people felt their experience didn’t accord with what he was saying. Doha is building a hub away from the main population; it was very helpful because he showed what needed to be done.”

According to the mayor’s team, building the Thames estuary airport at a similar remove from the capital would expose fewer than 30,000 people to aircraft noise. Johnson said: “The brutal, ineluctable facts of geography mean that we as a country will come round to this in the end.”

While Sir Howard Davies left the Thames estuary proposal off the original shortlist, political pressure resulted in a fudge whereby the commission requested more time to consider the idea of a brand new, four-runway hub in east London. Davies will announce in September whether the estuary plan remains in contention with the other three schemes. As well as Heathrow and Gatwick airports’ own blueprints for an additional runway, the Heathrow Hub group has drawn up a scheme to lengthen the west London airport’s two existing runways to effectively create a four-runway operation.

The commission will give its final recommendation in June 2015. No political party has promised to implement its findings. Johnson, who may yet be in a parliamentary role when a decision is made, said: “I will respect the findings of the Davies commission but I will not abide by them.”

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/may/23/uk-airport-boris-johnson-gatwick-thames-estuary-london

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See also Telegraph article at 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/10850369/Boris-Johnson-Gatwick-to-get-new-runway-in-political-fix.html

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Boris In Final Desperate Push For Estuary Airport, Dismissing Gatwick Expansion A ‘Sham’

The Mayor of London has made his final case for a new four-runway airport in the Thames Estuary.

By Elizabeth Anderson  (Management Today)

Friday, 23 May 2014

 

Mayor of London Boris Johnson has said that a new airport in the Thames Estuary would add £7bn a year to the UK economy and create 400,000 jobs.

Six months after the Airport Commission said it favoured options for a third runway at Heathrow and another for a second runway at Gatwick, Johnson has come back with a final push for a new hub in the Estuary to cope with the growing numbers of travellers into and out of London.

‘The creation of a monstrous Heathrow on a constrained site won’t solve our capacity crisis and would inflict untold misery on hundreds of thousands more Londoners through the din of many more jet engines,’ he said. ‘A new hub in the inner estuary can be built for the same cost as a four-runway Heathrow, and would bring new jobs, homes, and long-term competitiveness.’

The Mayor said that if the commission failed to look to the longer term and continued to focus on what was needed in the short term, it would be letting the country down.

He also said there is a ‘political fix around Gatwick’ which is edging towards giving the UK’s second-busiest airport the go ahead, and that expanding Gatwick is a ‘sham, a snare, a delusion.’

The Airports Commission, led by MT columnist Sir Howard Davies, was set up by the UK Government in September 2012 to look at ways of increasing UK airport capacity.

In December 2013, the committee concluded that Heathrow and Gatwick were the two airports shortlisted to go through to the next round of scrutiny over who gets to build another runway. It said more detail on Johnson’s proposal for the hub on the Isle of Grain in Kent was needed before it could consider the proposal.

At the time, Johnson said the good news was that ‘we’re not dead yet,’ but described Davies’ request for more information as a ‘fudgerama’, saying his own proposal was now ‘half in and half out’.

 However Medway and Kent Councils both oppose the Mayor’s plans, and yesterday published the results of a survey they commissioned that suggested five out of six adults would oppose the new airport.

Heathrow and Gatwick outlined revised plans for new runways last week. Gatwick’s new runway will allow 10 million more passengers a year to travel, it said, and create 120,000 jobs.

Heathrow’s third runway would create 100,000 jobs, deliver £100bn of economic benefits, and will add 40 new direct routes ‘to fast growing economies’ like San José, Wuhan and Kolkata.

The Commission is due to make a final recommendation by 2015.

http://www.managementtoday.co.uk/news/1295593/boris-final-push-estuary-airport-dismissing-gatwick-expansion-sham/

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Boris’s press release

Boris’s press release onhis submission to the Airports Commission is at

https://www.london.gov.uk/media/mayor-press-releases/2014/05/mayor-warns-airports-commission-not-to-miss-the-bigger-picture

Mayor warns Airports Commission not to miss the ‘bigger picture’

23 May 2014

The Mayor of London today urged the Commission charged with refereeing the ongoing debate about where to provide new aviation capacity in the UK to take the “bigger picture and longer view ” into account. Issuing a substantial new dossier of evidence today (23 May) the Mayor said that a national decision on airport policy was not just about where to lay the tarmac for another runway, but presented a chance to reshape the national economy to meet the challenges of astonishing levels of projected population growth, not least in London. The Mayor said that if the commission failed to look to the longer term and continued to focus on what was needed in the short term, it would be letting the country down.

Key to nearly every page of the new submission is the belief that airport policy has a huge impact on the entire fabric of society and that the decision on national aviation policy must be closely linked to the phenomenal rate of population growth in London. With London forecast to grow to 10million people by 2030 and by a staggering 37 per cent to 11.3million people by 2050, major infrastructure decisions like airport expansion have to contribute towards meeting the need for homes and jobs posed by that growth. Were a decision made to build a new airport then redevelopment of the Heathrow site could provide 90,000 jobs and 80,000 homes, adding £7.5 billion a year to the UK economy.

Today the Mayor told the Airports Commission they risked missing a once in a lifetime opportunity to end the blinkered and ‘make-do’ philosophy that had led to decades of haphazard expansion, and to recognise that the only proposal to address the wider needs of the nation would be to build a new hub airport that would generate economic benefits of at least £7bn a year, providing a secure platform for the prosperity of a growing population.

The submission to the Airports Commission has been developed with the support of world leading consultancies with specialties covering a wide range of aviation and city planning skills. And in the evidence released today the Mayor’s team declare that a new airport in the inner estuary is technically, economically and environmentally feasible. The new airport:

  • Would generate a massive, permanent boost for the UK economy. It would support around 400,000 jobs UK wide, with the benefits from the extra global connectivity alone worth nearly £7bn a year. Those benefits would be far greater and much wider-reaching than single new runways at Heathrow or Gatwick.
  • Is assessed as commercially viable on a standalone basis with only a small increase in landing charges – nothing like the increase claimed by the Commission.
  • Faces no insuperable obstacles to its delivery. Every challenge posed can be addressed and building a new airport would be far less taxing than facing the challenges posed by the massive environmental and political undeliverability of a new runway at Heathrow.

The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, said: “The Airports Commission has been asked to consider a subject that is of vital importance to our country’s prosperity and place in the world. It is not a small matter and their work will have ramifications for decades to come. That is why it is crucial their considerations take into account the future requirements of this country in 40 or even 50 years time. We must ensure that the final outcome is not one that future generations will regret.”

Today’s evidence included studies conducted for TfL by the Civil Aviation Authority, which show that a third runway at Heathrow would bring the number exposed to severe noise to more than one million people. Areas that would be newly caught within Heathrow’s noise contour include Kensington, Chelsea, Chiswick and Deptford. By contrast a new airport in the Thames Estuary would expose less than three per cent of the same number to aircraft noise. The document adds that scientific studies have associated loud and sustained noise with adverse health impacts, including increased risk of hospital admission for stroke and cardiovascular disease, higher rates of hypertension and lower reading ages in children.

Other key points made in the submission include that:

  • By 2050, a new hub airport would provide 63 more daily regional air connections than if no additional hub airport capacity is provided, which is 43 more than today and 49 more than Heathrow could sustain with a third runway.
  • A new airport in the Inner Thames Estuary would add 134,000 net additional jobs in the local area by 2050 – equivalent to £16.6bn GVA per annum – and trigger a further 138,000 catalytic jobs across the whole region. Nationally, an inner Thames estuary airport would support 388,000 gross jobs by 2050, worth £42.3bn per annum in GVA terms.
  • Having a strong hub airport serving the UK is vital to the economies of the UK regions. It would provide a £2.2 billion economic boost to 15 major UK cities by 2050 and deliver 18,000 new jobs thanks to the improved connectivity that a new, unconstrained airport would deliver.
  • The additional connectivity would improve UK productivity, resulting in a permanent 0.5% increase in GDP – valued at £6.9bn in today’s prices.
  • By contrast, the Airports Commission’s own figures demonstrate that a 3-runway Heathrow would effectively be full shortly after opening, with limited slot availability and very poor resilience – little improvement on Heathrow today.
  • A second runway at Gatwick is no solution either – it fails to address the dire noise problems; unable to function as a hub alongside Heathrow it cannot deliver the connectivity the UK needs; and as a result offers the smallest economic boost of any of the options being considered.

Today’s submission also reaffirms a key conclusion of TfL’s submission to the Airports Commission in 2013: that building and moving to a new airport can be assessed as commercially viable, on a standalone basis, with a relatively modest increase in landing charges.

A new analysis undertaken by Ernst & Young concludes that a threefold increase in landing charges, claimed by the Airports Commission to be necessary to repay debt by 2050, is based on assumptions that are without any local or global precedent; adjusting these assumptions brings the required increase in landing charges down significantly, to 1.4x Heathrow’s Q6 level.  Indeed, KPMG (the Commission’s own financial advisers) acknowledges the 2050 assumption as “arbitrary” and the approach “highly simplified”, and that, under different assumptions, an increase of just six per cent would be needed.

It was confirmed today that the Mayor and Sir Howard Davies will both attend and speak at a major event on 18 June where the challenge of London’s growth will be addressed. Further details and invitations to the “Shaping a growing London: the place of an airport” event will be released within the next week.

 https://www.london.gov.uk/media/mayor-press-releases/2014/05/mayor-warns-airports-commission-not-to-miss-the-bigger-picture

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Some of the comments under the Guardian story:

 

Boris isn’t interested in anyone’s health. This is his great vanity project. Look at this record on air quality. If he gave a damn he would do something to reduce inner city traffic, but that’s not sexy enough.

The best airport is one with no runways.

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Just think of Boris and Dave as salesmen,on commission, for a variety of construction,oil/gas and diesel engine interests.

The intriguing thing is who are they the front men for and how their “commissions” are paid.

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A Thames airport would be an utter disaster in terms of fog, gales and bird strikes. Planes would continue to have to circle over London and fly low over the city on take-off rather than over the gravel pits to the immediate west of Heathrow as to fly over the estuary and the towering London Array would disrupt flight paths into other coastal European airports such as Schipol. It would also disrupt the prosperity of those Thames Valley towns such as Swindon, Reading etc whose businesses depend on easy access to Heathrow.

Boris is a dreamer, nothing wrong with that, but he’s having a nightmare with this proposal.

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Which would you prefer, a plane crashing into the unexploded bombs of the SS Montgomery or a plane crashing into London?
If Heathrow stays and a plane hits a populated area people will look back and say, why didn’t they take the opportunity to move the airport

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What about the post-oil society? Will we really see air travel grow for ever?

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Hasn’t the closure of Manston indicated what a dead duck a hub airport this side of “town” would be?

Heathrow remains the major focal point because it is positioned to serve more of the country. Only Stansted could improve on that by concentrating our logistical minds on more central/eastern routes north, rather than the current obsession with the West Coast as regards HS2.

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What people want is not always in our best collective interests.

I’m sure many people would want an unpaid helper, but slavery is illegal, at least incivilised countries.

Flying is the most effective way of causing climate change. While a tiny minority get to benefit from this in the short term, all of life on earth has to suffer to the consequences. Part of the tragedy of the commons.

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I think future generatyions are going to regret quite a few decisions being taken right now. Most involve continuing to burn fossil fuels when the evidence of severe change is not just threatening to occur, but with the confirmation of the Antarctic ice sheet on the move ACTUALLY HAPPENING. Fat Boris may be in an expansionary state on a personal level, but the pursuit of fossil-fuel driven economic growth will be recognized by historians as the cause of the round of extinctions and economic collapse precipitating now. We are all responsible, of course, but they must wonder why we so blindly threw everything away and followed complete ignorami like Cameron, the clan Johnson, the Ghost of Thatcher. As the film so titled grasped so aptly, this really is The Age Of Stupid.

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Survey by Medway Council & Kent County Council shows 84% against Thames Estuary airport

Five out of six people would oppose building a new airport in the Thames Estuary if it meant closing Heathrow and other airports, a survey has found.  An estuary airport on the Isle of Grain and the closure of Heathrow has been proposed by London Mayor Boris Johnson. The online survey of 2,000 adults from across the UK was commissioned by Medway Council and Kent County Council, which oppose a new Thames Estuary airport. They say that financially, geographically and environmentally the estuary airport project is wrong – and it would be a huge waste of public money. The survey found 38% of those asked supported an estuary airport. But when they were told Heathrow, City and Southend airports could close as a result, (which they would probably have to) the support dropped to 16%, or just over one in six.  Boris is due to submit final plans for the estuary airport to the Airports Commission today.  The cost of the airport has now risen to £148bn for the Isle of Grain option. Boris wants a city of 190,000 homes on the Heathrow site, if the airport shuts [which is utterly unlikely].  

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‘Five out of six people’ against Thames Estuary airport

22.5.2014(BBC)

Artist's impression of island airportBoris Johnson wants the Thames Estuary airport to be built on the Isle of Grain

Five out of six people would oppose building a new airport in the Thames Estuary if it meant closing Heathrow and other airports, a survey has found.

An estuary airport on the Isle of Grain and the closure of Heathrow has been proposed by London Mayor Boris Johnson.

The online survey of 2,000 adults from across the UK was commissioned by Medway Council and Kent County Council (KCC), which oppose the new airport.

Mr Johnson’s office has not yet commented on the survey.

The mayor is due to submit final plans for the estuary airport to theAirports Commission on Friday.

The commission, which is considering how to expand air capacity in south-east England, has drawn up a shortlist which comprises building a third runway at Heathrow, lengthening an existing runway at Heathrow, and building a new runway at Gatwick.

It is also considering the £148bn Isle of Grain airport in north Kent.

Aerial view of the Isle of GrainMedway Council and Kent County Council oppose building an airport on the Isle of Grain

Mr Johnson has said if the new airport is built, a city of 190,000 homes and thousands of jobs could be created on the Heathrow site.

Medway and KCC believe City and Southend could also close, but Mr Johnson has not said this would be the case.

The survey found 38% of those asked supported an estuary airport. But when they were told Heathrow, City and Southend airports could close as a result, the support dropped to 16%, or just over one in six.

“We strongly believe that plans to site a hub airport in the Thames Estuary are financially, geographically and environmentally wrong,” said Rodney Chambers, leader of Medway Council.

“It will waste tens of billions of pounds of taxpayers’ money for a project which is on the wrong side of London for the majority of passengers.

“This survey highlights the chronic lack of public support for the project.

“Most people will not back a scheme which closes other key airports including Heathrow and City and Southend Airports.”

The Airports Commission will make its final recommendation on airport expansion in summer 2015.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-27522214


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Only one in six want Boris airport in estuary

22.5.2014 (Medway Council Press Release)

Just one in six British adults (16%) would support the building of an Estuary Airport in the Thames at the expense of closing existing facilities at Heathrow, City and Southend according to new research.

A public opinion survey, carried out by ComRes and commissioned by Medway Council  asked more than 2,000 British adults if they supported plans for a new airport in the Thames Estuary.

Just over a third (38%) say that they would support an estuary airport. However, this figure plummets to just 16% when people are told that existing major facilities would have to close as a result.

Plans submitted by Mayor of London Boris Johnson to the Airports Commission include an option to site a four runway £148bn development in the Thames Estuary.

The London mayor believes that alternatives need to be found in order for the UK to maintain its place in an increasingly competitive global aviation market place.

Cllr Rodney Chambers, Leader of Medway Council which with Kent County Council and the RSPB has consistently opposed plans for an estuary airport, said: “No one disputes the need to invest more in aviation in order to ensure the UK keeps pace with demand and matches competition from abroad.

“However, we strongly believe that plans to site a hub airport in the Thames Estuary is financially, geographically and environmentally wrong.

“It will waste tens of billions of pounds of taxpayer’s money for a project which is on the wrong side of London for the majority of passengers.

“This survey highlights the chronic lack of public support for the project. Most people will not back a scheme which closes other key airports including Heathrow and City and Southend Airports and it’s time we explore other, more sensible options.

“This should include how Stansted can be upgraded alongside improvements at the network of excellent regional airports which serve the UK and are not being used to their full capacity.”

The public polling also revealed a lack of support for additional travel and ticket fare increases as a result of the infrastructure costs required to fund a new hub airport.

Nearly half (49%) said it was not acceptable to increase airline ticket costs in order to fund a new airport.
Respondents also said that, on average, the maximum time they would be prepared to travel from Central London to an airport near London would be just under an hour (59 minutes).

Cllr Chambers added: “The mayor’s vision for a new hub airport in the Thames estuary is misguided on several levels. Not only are the economics wrong but it would lead to a huge population shift with the need for a new city the size of Manchester being built.

“The fact that anyone would seek to do this on an area of global scientific and environmental significance, which is home to 300,000 migrating wildfowl, simply beggars belief.”

Paul Carter, Leader of Kent County Council, said: “The estuary airport is simply in the wrong place and on the wrong side of London. It is in a place that is difficult to access, would require billions of pounds thrown at it, is particularly prone to bad weather, high winds and fog, and also on one of the most significant bird migratory paths in the country. Birds and aeroplanes are not a good mix.”

• ComRes interviewed 2,034 GB adults online between 4th and 6th April 2014. Data were weighted to be demographically representative of all British adults aged 18+.
• ComRes is a member of the British Polling Council and abides by its rules (www.britishpollingcouncil.org). This commits ComRes to the highest standards of transparency.
• Data tables are available on the ComRes website –  www.comres.co.uk

DOWNLOADS:

Medway and Kent Councils, Thames Estuary Airport Survey

http://medwaymatters.com/transport-and-streets/stop-estuary-airport/only-one-in-six-want-boris-airport-in-estaury/

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Only one in six back ‘Boris Island’ plans

by Tom Newcombe (Buying Business Travel)
 23 May 2014

Only 16% of British adults would support ‘Boris Island’ if it would cause other surrounding airports to close, according to new research.

The study found just one in six British adults would support the building of an Estuary airport in the Thames, dubbed Boris island after the mayor’s backing, at the expense of closing existing facilities at Heathrow, London City and Southend airport, according to a public opinion survey commissioned by Medway Council and Kent Council.

The findings come as the mayor submits his final plans for an Estuary airport to the government’s aviation commission.

The study asked more than 2,000 people if they supported the plans for a new airport in the Thames Estuary, with 38 per cent saying they would support an Estuary airport.

However, this figure drops to 16 per cent when people are told that existing major facilities would have to close as a result.

Rodney Chambers, leader of Medway Council, said: “No one disputes the need to invest more in aviation in order to ensure the UK keeps pace with demand and matches competition from abroad.

“However, we strongly believe that plans to site a hub airport in the Thames Estuary is financially, geographically and environmentally wrong.

“It will waste tens of billions of pounds of taxpayer’s money for a project which is on the wrong side of London for the majority of passengers.

“This survey highlights the chronic lack of public support for the project. Most people will not back a scheme which closes other key airports including Heathrow and City and Southend Airports and it’s time we explore other, more sensible options.

“This should include how Stansted can be upgraded alongside improvements at the network of excellent regional airports which serve the UK and are not being used to their full capacity.”

http://buyingbusinesstravel.com/news/2322480-only-one-six-back-%E2%80%98boris-island%E2%80%99-plans

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More about 

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More flights from Manchester to USA taking pressure off south east airports

Flights by American Airlines have started from Manchester to Charlotte in North Carolina, and will run every day until the end of September. Airport and airline bosses heralded the flight as a boost for both the airport and Manchester. The airline says “Manchester has been a hugely important city for American Airlines for many years and we are thrilled to add this flight to Charlotte…. It will bring in around 200 passengers every day…..Next year, we hope to run them for longer. In terms of American Airlines, we have a massive presence in the US and Charlotte is our second biggest hub. ….This is putting Manchester in line with our other destinations like Madrid and Rome.”  American Airlines already flies from Manchester to Chicago, New York and Philadelphia. The airline CEO said most passengers are expected to originate from America – looking to fly into the north of England.”The biggest growth in airlines is down to people visiting friends and family, and Manchester has a catchment area of 22m.” More international flights from the regional airports mean less pressure to expand airports in the south east. Or to build a new south east runway. Manchester’s 2nd runway is hardly used.

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First flight from Manchester to North Carolina with American Airlines takes off today

Andrew Stuart

American
Airlines Boeing 757 at Manchester Airport

The first flight from Manchester to Charlotte in North Carolina will take off today.

The inaugural American Airlines service will arrive into Terminal Three, before running every day until the end of September.

On the eve of the first flight, operated by US Airways after their merger, airport and airline bosses heralded the flight as a boost for both the airport and Manchester.

Clive Cook, American Airlines’ MD for UK and Ireland, told the M.E.N: “Manchester has been a hugely important city for American Airlines for many years and we are thrilled to add this flight to Charlotte,

“This flight is a very important step for us. I will bring in around 200 passengers every day.

“Next year, we hope to run them for longer. In terms of American Airlines, we have a massive presence in the US and Charlotte is our second biggest hub.

“This is putting Manchester in line with our other destinations like Madrid and Rome.”

American Airlines already flies from Manchester to Chicago, New York and Philadelphia.

He said most passengers are expected to originate from America – looking to fly into the north of England.

He added: “Lots of people don’t want to come into Heathrow, Manchester has a great draw on it’s own and it’s a great way into the UK. The biggest growth in airlines is down to people visiting friends and family, and Manchester has a catchment area of 22m. There is very big traffic into Manchester and we’re helping that along a bit.

“Before our merger, American Airlines had operated at Manchester for over 25 years, we go back a long way.”

He said Charlotte’s 630 daily departures to almost 150 destinations also made the airport a great transfer point for travellers.

Andrew Cowan, chief operating officer for MAG, said: “It is not only great news for Manchester Airport to welcome this important new route, but for the entire region. The introduction of the daily Charlotte route will further strengthen connections from Manchester to North America, with a wealth of onward connectivity. The route also sees another direct long haul service added to our ever increasing network of routes, which is testament to the success of our Fly Manchester campaign.”

The flight will be met by a water cannon, cake and speeches.

http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/american-airlines-first-flight-manchester-7161028


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Manchester Airport’s destinations map is at  http://www.manchesterairport.co.uk/manweb.nsf/Content/destinations

which show direct flights to some places outside Europe, and the flight details (day of the week, duration etc).

Trouble is that the website says:

“NEED SOME INSPIRATION FOR YOUR NEXT HOLIDAY?”

and most of the destinations are largely for leisure.

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See also

 

United Airlines launches new Edinburgh to Chicago link

24.5.2014 (BBC)

The first direct flight service between Edinburgh and Chicago has been launched by United Airlines.It will operate five times weekly until 12 June, daily from 13 June to 2 September and four times weekly between 3 September and 6 October. The airport said it marked “a significant step” in achieving better connectivity between the Scottish capital and North America.   This service will provide real benefits to Scotland’s economy, encouraging more tourism, trade and investment by reducing the need for travellers to make connecting flights via London or the continent.  ie. this helps to take the pressure off the south east airports, meaning the alleged case for a new runway is weakened. There is a huge amount of spare runway capacity at all regional airports, which should be used – rather than all flights being from the south east.  That helps balance the economy, and reduce the north-south divide.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-business-27555126

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see also

 

Qatar Airways new service between Edinburgh and Doha – and others – avoiding need for connecting flights

November 22, 2013        A new non-stop flight between Edinburgh Airport and Doha in Qatar is to be launched next year. It will be operated x5 per week by Qatar Airways, which serves more than 100 international destinations from Doha. The 787 Dreamliner aircraft will fly all year round on the route, providing connections to Australian hubs in Perth and Melbourne. It will be the Dreamliner’s first scheduled service from Scotland. Officials at Edinburgh Airport have long wanted to attract a major Middle Eastern carrier to allow them to compete with Glasgow, which provides a twice daily Emirates service to Dubai. There will also be a US Airways route linking Edinburgh with Philadelphia. Scotland’s Transport Minister Keith Brown hailed the move as “excellent news” for the aviation sector and said the new route was “yet more evidence of the strong bonds we are building with Qatar. The direct flights remove the need to use Heathrow for hub connections. In 2014 Scotland has the Commonwealth Games, and the Ryder Cup and wants to get in more visitors to these, as well as other business and tourists.     Click here to view full story…

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IATA economist warns expected growth in air travel “major challenge” to carbon reduction (ie. not possible)

Air transport has proved to be one of the fastest growing industries over the past 20 years, with passenger traffic nearly tripling in terms of revenue-passenger-kilometres (RPKs) and increasing at an average of 5.4% per year since 1994. However, though there have been improvements in fuel use per revenue-tonne-kilometre (RTK), the industry’s carbon emissions increasing by 150% since 1994. With a similar rate of increase in air traffic expected over the next 20 years, the emissions can only go up. The increase in air travel had been helped by a halving in its cost over the period. The future cost of jet fuel is unknown but IATA hopes the price of jet fuel will be stable, and the cost of flying will get even lower – justifying huge expansion predictions. IATA says curbing demand for air travel is not realistic. ( Why ?)  IATA knows its aim of so called “carbon neutral growth” cannot be achieved, but hopes ICAO will come up with something to enable aviation emissions to be traded, so the industry can buy carbon cuts in other sectors, while it continues to emit more.
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With air traffic likely to triple over the next 20 years, decoupling emissions growth will be a major challenge, warns IATA economist

Tue 13 May 2014  (GreenAir online )

Air transport has proved to be one of the fastest growing industries over the past 20 years, with passenger traffic nearly tripling in terms of revenue-passenger-kilometres (RPKs) and increasing at an average of 5.4% per year since 1994. However, despite strong efficiency gains that have seen fuel use per revenue-tonne-kilometre (RTK) decline by nearly a half, this has led to the industry’s carbon emissions increasing by one-and-a-half times over the same period, reported IATA’s Chief Economist, Brian Pearce (right), at the ATAG Global Sustainable Aviation Summit in Geneva. With a similar rate of increase in air traffic expected over the next 20 years, industry and governments will need to overcome the challenge of decoupling it from the growth in emissions, he said.

Pearce told delegates the global spend on air transport had closely followed the upward trend of global nominal GDP since 1994 and if forecasts were correct, that spend would increase from currently around $7 billion a year to $2.5 trillion by 2034. The world spent around an annual average of 0.9% of GDP on air transport over the past 20 years, he said. Although outstripped by the growth in passenger traffic, air freight (measured in FTKs) had increased by an average of 4.2% per annum, compared to a 2.8% annual average increase in global GDP.

The increase had been helped by a halving in the cost of air transport over the period. “Much of that reduction has been achieved by manufacturers giving us much more fuel efficient aircraft and engines,” he said. “And the reduction has come during a period when jet fuel prices have tripled – an amazing efficiency record.”

With jet fuel forming around a third of all airline costs, the future trend over the next 20 years would be determined by fuel prices. The ‘peak oil’ view would see much higher prices but economists, by contrast, foresee a reduction in energy costs as a result of a stimulation in innovation and efficiency caused by the rapid increase during the past 20 years. “The consensus is that we are likely to see stability in fuel prices,” said Pearce. “Therefore, I think we should probably bet that we will see air transport continuing to become cheaper.”

Air travel would be in strong demand over the next 20 years, supported by the growth of large cities and the need to connect those cities, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, forecast Pearce, with the growth in passenger traffic outstripping that of air cargo.

Despite the rising levels of carbon emissions, Pearce said curbing that demand in order to achieve the industry’s carbon-neutral growth target was not a realistic option. “Air transport is critical for economic development. Do we really want to suppress the travel needs of, say, India and China? Because that is what we’re talking about here,” he questioned.

“But it illustrates the challenge that we, the industry, and governments need to overcome. We do need to decouple the growth in air transport from the growth in emissions. The industry has been thinking a lot about this and how it is possible to design a mechanism that can address those differences sufficiently and fairly. The challenge we have over the next three years at ICAO is to make sure that thinking is reflected in the discussions by governments.”

Pearce said a study carried out by IATA and consultants McKinsey had showed there was scope to make a range of cost-effective reductions amounting to around 215 million tonnes of carbon emissions per year by 2030 (the industry emitted around 689 million tonnes in 2012). However, he said, most of those reductions would need to come from infrastructure measures that only governments could act on, such as air traffic management improvements in Europe and the United States.

“But even with implementation of all these measures, the demand for air travel, and to a lesser extent air cargo, means there is going to be tremendous pressure on the industry because of the inevitable rise in emissions. Carbon-neutral growth, therefore, is going to be critical for us and for the wider economy in order to deliver the benefits from the industry that we have seen over the past 20 years.”

During the conference, ATAG released a new report ‘Aviation Benefits Beyond Borders’ that shows the industry’s economic impact was worth $2.4 trillion, with 3.4% of global GDP and over 58 million jobs supported by aviation. In 2013, 3.1 billion passengers were carried around 5.4 trillion kilometres on 36.4 million commercial flights that served nearly 50,000 routes.
http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1858

 

Links:

Brian Pearce’s slide presentation

ATAG Global Sustainable Aviation Summit

ATAG Global Sustainable Aviation Summit Video Channel

‘Aviation Benefits Beyond Borders’

IATA Fact Sheet – Climate Change

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https://www.iata.org/pressroom/facts_figures/fact_sheets/pages/environment.aspx

IATA ‘s “Industry Goals”:

  • An average improvement in fuel efficiency of 1.5% per year to 2020
  • A cap on net aviation CO2 emissions from 2020: carbon-neutral growth [NET not gross]
  • Cut net CO2 emissions in half by 2050 compared to 2005 [by carbon trading with other sectors that actually make the carbon cuts, allowing aviation emissions to grow.]

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Carbon-Neutral Growth 2020 (CNG2020)

  • CNG2020 means that aviation’s net CO2 emissions will not increase beyond 2020 levels even as demand for air transport continues to grow
  • The industry is working hard to deliver CNG2020 (Four Pillar strategy), but it is also contingent upon action by other stakeholders, notably:
    • The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) needs to adopt a CO2 emission standard for new aircraft types
    • Governments and fuel companies need to support and scale up the production of sustainable biofuels for aviation
    • Governments and air navigation service providers need to improve air traffic management, and live up to their commitments to deliver the Single European Sky in Europe and NextGen in the United States
    • At its Annual General Meeting in June 2013, IATA members adopted a resolutionproviding a set of principles on how governments could integrate a single global market-based measure as part of an overall package of measures to put a cap on net aviation emissions from 2020

Four Pillar Strategy to Address Climate Change

Technology

  • Short-term: enhancements and modifications to existing in-service fleet
  • Medium-term: accelerate fleet renewal, introduce latest technologies, including drop-in biofuels
  • Long-term: radical new technologies and aircraft designs
  • IATA Technology Roadmap identifies technologies that could reduce fuel burn per aircraft by up to 30%

Operations

  • Improved operations can save fuel and CO2 emissions by up to 6% per year (IPCC)
  • IATA helps fuel conservation by compiling best practices, publishing guidance, visiting airlines and training
  • IATA will extend fuel conservation programs and promote airline environmental management systems

Infrastructure

  • Governments and infrastructure providers could avoid up to 12% of CO2 emissions by addressing airport and airspace inefficiencies (IPCC)
    • Some 4% of this has already been achieved since 1999 (according to the Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation – CANSO)
    • Single European Sky (SES), US NextGen Air Transport System and flexible use of airspace would contribute to these savings

Economic measures

  • To the extent that the industry’s climate change objectives may not be achieved through the first three pillars alone, a cost-effective single global market-based measure is needed to bridge the gap
  • Considering the international nature of aviation, a global approach to aviation emissions must be preferred over a patchwork of individual and uncoordinated policies:
    • A market-based measure should be cost-effective and administratively simple
    • Airlines should only be held accountable once for their emissions
    • A patchwork of measures may lead to the same emissions being covered by more than one mechanism.
  • A global mechanism is needed to prevent market distortions and carbon leakage

At its 38th session, the ICAO Assembly decided to develop a global market-based measure for international aviation. It requested the ICAO Council to finalize the work on the technical aspects, environmental and economic impacts and modalities of the possible options for a global MBM scheme. The results of the work of the Council will be reported to the next Assembly in 2016 for approval.

Updated: December 2013

 

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CityJet plane makes emergency landing at London City airport as section of wing became partly detached

A CitryJet flight from London City airport to Florence, carrying more than 60 people had to turn back after take-off because part of its wing became partly detached in mid-flight. The pilot of the Avro RJ85 plane had to abort the CityJet flight and circle above the Thames Estuary [burning off fuel?] before landing again at London City airport with a damaged wing.  After take-off at about 7.25am today, passengers heard a loud bang and a section of the left wing, about six foot long, partly detached from the plane. The section is a cowling, made of plastic or fibreglass, which would have come down if the rods holding it had broken. The piece detached is aerodynamic, not vital for flight, but there could have been worse problems if it had fully fallen off. This is yet another incident of a plane with technical problems landing at London airports, flying miles – damaged – over highly populated areas.  There will be an investigation into why the rods broke, and the section came away. Only 6 weeks ago  the engine of a Swiss plane  ‘blew up’ on runway just before take-off at London City airport
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Plane grounded after part of wing falls off [well, got partly detached] mid-flight

More than 60 passengers had to be flown back to London City Airport after part of the plane’s wing fell off shortly after it took off

By   (Telegraph)

A plane carrying more than 60 people had to turn back after take-off because part of its wing fell off mid-flight.

The pilot had to abort the CityJet flight from London City Airport to Florence, and circle the Thames Estuary before landing again at the airport with a damaged wing.

After take-off at about 7.25am today, passengers heard a loud bang and a section of the left wing, about six foot long, detached from the plane.

Cole Moreton, a features writer at The Telegraph, was on board the flight and described the confusion as passengers told cabin crew, who appeared to alert the pilot.


Picture of the wing taken by Cole Moreton who was on board

“The bang made people jump and was alarming then we sat there thinking this isn’t right, surely?” he said.

“Does the pilot know? But we didn’t appear to be crashing. So there was a tense few minutes while we circled and waited for an announcement.

“Relief to get back on the ground, seriousness sunk in when we saw emergency services scrambled and lights flashing.”

Emergency services were called to the Avro RJ85 plane once it landed on the runway. Passengers said the wing and part of the aircraft looked badly burned.

The aircraft has been designed for shorter runways and there are currently 23 in operation, according to Cityjet.

An Avro RJ85 operated by CityJet similar to the plane involved in the incident (ALAMY)

A replacement plane was found and the flight took off about an hour later from London City Airport for Florence.

A spokeswoman for CityJet said: “The WX 281 flight had just taken off from London City Airport on its way to Florence when the cover of the operating mechanism on the wing became partially detached.

“Air Traffic Control were notified and the aircraft returned making a normal approach and landing. ”

An internal investigation into what caused the problem is due to take place and CityJet said it was hopeful the plane could fly again today if two broken rods could be replaced.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/10832817/Plane-grounded-after-part-of-wing-falls-off-mid-flight.html

 

Some of the many comments below the article:

Flying along on a wing and a prayer, then just a bloody prayer.

he passenger who took the video was probably thinking about the air accident investigation enquiry that would have followed had their plane landed vertically.

Looks like one of the wing’s flap-track boat fairings has broken and dropped down, uncovering the track structure above it, but not separated. Think they are fibreglass or plastic from memory, and not structural just aerodynamic. But the flap has moved and retracted fully up after take-off anyway, just a problem whether to extend down again for the return landing. 

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Some earlier incidents of aircraft using London City Airport:

Swiss plane engine ‘blew up’ on runway just before take-off at London City airport

March 29, 2014

It has been reported that an engine blew up on a Swiss International Airlines plane waiting to take off from London City airport, while it was powering up its engines seconds before it was due to leave start its take off. The airport said that 4 people needed treatment for minor injuries after Geneva-bound LX437 (an Avro RJ100) with 74 passengers and 4 crew on board suffered an engine problem. The pilot aborted the take off. A passenger reported that “There was a large bang and flames which grew and grew and large chunks of what looked like chunks of red-hot metal started flying up. People started freaking out…..In about 20 seconds we would have been in the air.” The runway at the east London airport was closed for more than an hour after the incident at 3pm on Thursday. Three people were treated at the scene for minor injuries by the London ambulance service. It is not the first incident to feature an RJ100 at the airport. In February 2009, a BA flight from Amsterdam crash-landed when one of its wheels failed.     Click here to view full story…

 

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London City Airport crash jet ‘not properly serviced’

11th February 2010
 Safety maintenance work on a plane whose nose landing gear collapsed as it touched
down at London City Airport had not been properly completed.   Smoke filled the
British Airways Avro 146 jet, carrying 67 passengers, as it landed on 13 February
2009. A fatigue crack led to the landing gear fracturing. Improvement work on
the plane had not been fully finished even though records at the American maintenance
firm responsible showed it had been. (BBC)   Click here to view full story…
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London City Airport crash: BA Avro RJ jets have experienced problems before

14th February 2009    

This incident is the 2nd time in a week that a BA CityFlyer jet has closed the
runway at London City Airport. As well as the hard landing at City airport on
13th, on February 5 an Avro RJ suffered minor damage to its nose wheel. The Avro
RJ-100 is a medium-sized commercial aircraft with room for 4 crew, and between
85 and 100 passengers. In the past there have been two major incidents involving
the Avro RJ-100 with a combined total of 99 casualties. (Telegraph)                                           Click here to view full story…

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British Airways jet in ‘hard landing’ at London City airport

13th February 2009    

A BA jet from Amsterdam has been involved in an incident at London City Airport.
Eyewitnesses say the front wheels by the aircraft’s nose collapsed when the plane
made a hard landing. The aircraft skidded to a halt on the runway and its 67 passengers
and 5 crew were evacuated using the plane’s emergency chutes. Six ambulances were
called to the scene but there have been no reports of any major injuries. (BBC)
Click here to view full story…

 

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Heathrow and Gatwick battle it out in the media, but is either environmentally deliverable?

Gatwick and Heathrow have been trying to get the best publicity they can for their runway, while simultaneously having a dig at each other. But does either deliver on environmental issues? Many of the new ideas, such as noise compensation schemes and a congestion charge, aim to tackle these impacts but much of what has been proposed either misses the key questions or makes impressive promises on issues that are outside the control of airports. Heathrow’s only contribution towards cutting carbon emissions appears to be using some renewable energy in its new terminal and incentivising efficient aircraft. They remain silent on inconvenient issues. Giving the go-ahead to any of the runway options would mean  UK carbon emissions would have to be cut elsewhere, either though imposing limits on regional airports, or expecting other sectors and industries to deliver near impossible emissions reductions. UK aviation has been given a very lax emissions target of only having to keep its CO2 emissions to 2005 levels by 2050. The assumption that this means an increase of 60% in passengers, or 55% in flights depends on carbon cuts in line with the rate of growth. It is by no means clear those carbon efficiencies will, or can, be made.

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Heathrow and Gatwick battle it out in the media, but is either environmentally deliverable?

15.5.2014 (Huffington Post blog)
By James Lees, AEF (Aviation Environment Federation )

Gatwick and Heathrow have been building up to this week for some time so that they could submit their updated proposals for a new runway to the government-appointed Airports Commission. They have done their best to keep the media interested by drip feeding their new ideas to the public while simultaneously having a dig at their rival.

Much of the media reporting has pitted the two airports against each other with a focus on which of the three schemes (two at Heathrow and one at Gatwick) would offer greatest benefit and be the easiest to deliver.

But do any of the new proposals deliver on environmental issues? Many of the new ideas, such as noise compensation schemes and a congestion charge, aim to tackle these impacts but much of what has been proposed either misses the key questions or makes impressive promises on issues that are outside the control of airports.

The new Heathrow proposal, for example, while seeking a 50% increase in flights, makes a commitment to “keep CO2 emissions within UK climate change targets“. The UK Government has also made this commitment – the Climate Change Act – and Heathrow’s only contribution towards this appears to be using some renewable energy in its new terminal and incentivising efficient aircraft.

Gatwick, while responsible for a smaller proportion of the UK’s emissions today, promises a similar increase in flight numbers and the addition of the many long haul flights it promises would carry a big carbon penalty.

Unlike Heathrow, the UK is required to meet its commitment on CO2 emissions under legislation. Giving the go-ahead to any of the runway options would mean emissions would have to be cut elsewhere, either though imposing limits on other airports, like Birmingham or Manchester (which currently have room to grow), or expecting other sectors and industries to deliver near impossible emissions reductions.

Heathrow promises to play its part in meeting local air quality limits but its commitments on this look shallow. The airport plans, for example, to introduce a congestion charge for those accessing the airport by road if a new runway is built. But air pollution at Heathrow is already above EU legal limits and as pollution from aircraft themselves adds to the problem, an additional 270,000 flights for an extra 40 million passengers and a doubling of freight capacity is likely to significantly increase emissions. A congestion charge would have to be spectacularly high in order to compensate for this.

On both noise and air pollution issues Gatwick claims a comparative advantage over its rivals, as its rural location means that there is a lower population density in the area and fewer sources of air pollution. But it is that very rural location, with its low levels of background noise, that is valued by the thousands of people who would be affected by a second runway at Gatwick.

Comparing itself favourably with Heathrow, where noise affects more people than at any other airport in Europe, doesn’t mean there is no noise problem at Gatwick, even today, and air pollution doesn’t need to breach legal limits to be harmful.

While all three runway proposals offer some sweeteners to deal with environmental impacts, none has been able to show how noise could be brought within the levels that are safe for human health or how a new runway could be compatible with the UK’s commitments on climate change.

With additional problems in relation to surface access and air pollution, the Airports Commission will have its work cut out in making a new runway look like an attractive investment for the next Government.

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/james-lees/heathrow-gatwick_b_5323315.html?just_reloaded=1

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An AirportWatch member adds:

Neither Heathrow nor Gatwick has explained how they will deal with their carbon emissions being a huge proportion of the UK’s aviation carbon emissions, and how much greater a proportion this would be if a new runway was built.  If Heathrow or Gatwick got a runway, and used it fully, the carbon emissions from other  UK airports may need to be reduced. There is currently no mechanism by which this would be  done, but the operators of other significant regional airports may well look at a new south east runway nervously.

Until Heathrow, Gatwick or indeed the Airports Commission itself explain how their expansion is compatible with the Climate Change Act, the presumption must be that it is NOT compatible,  and that any new runways cannot proceed without representing a fundamental challenge to the UK’s response to dangerous climate change.

The CCC guidance in 2009 recommended that 55% more flights than in 2005 could be fitted within the carbon ceiling, by 2050 – on condition that carbon efficiencies were made of the same scale. Thereby keeping the emissions broadly at the same level each year, of some 37.5 million tonnes CO2 per year.  If these carbon efficiencies ( NOT including carbon trading with other sectors ) do not come about, then UK aviation cannot expand by that amount.  ie. by another heavily use, long-haul runway, which is what Heathrow and Gatwick want ( as Gatwick hopes for more long haul destinations).

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This is what the CCC guidance, on which the Airports Commission depends, says on carbon cuts by the UK aviation industry, and future aviation expansion:

Page 10  CCC

http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/CCC-Aviation-Dec-2009-recommendation.pdf

Achieving the aviation emissions target

• Given prudent assumptions on likely improvements in fleet fuel efficiency and biofuels penetration, demand growth of around 60% would be compatible with keeping CO2
emissions in 2050 no higher than in 2005:

– In our Likely scenario, assumptions on improvement in fleet fuel efficiency
and biofuels penetration result in annual carbon intensity reduction of
around 0.9%.
– The cumulative reduction of around 35% in 2050 provides scope for
achieving the target with around 55% more Air Traffic Movements (ATMs).
With increasing load factors over time this could allow for around 60%
more passengers than in 2005.
– Given currently planned capacity expansion and with a demand response
to the projected carbon price and to some of the opportunities for modal
shift, demand could grow around 115% between now and 2050.
– Constraints on demand growth in addition to the projected carbon price
would therefore be required to meet the 2050 target.

• Future technological progress may make more rapid demand growth than 60% compatible with the target, but it is not prudent to plan on the assumption that such progress will be achieved: 

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and

Page  7  :

The report also notes the potential implications of non-CO2 aviation effects
on global warming. The scale of such effects is still scientifically uncertain, and
the effects are not covered by the Kyoto Protocol, the UK Climate Change Act
or the Government’s aviation target. The Committee notes the likely need to
account for these effects in future global and UK policy frameworks, but we
do not propose a specific approach in this report. Our assessment of required
policies is therefore focused on the target as currently defined – keeping 2050
UK aviation CO2 emissions to no more than 37.5 MtCO2
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AND

Page 41

In January 2009 the Government set a new target to reduce UK aviation
emissions to 2005 levels or below in 2050 as part of its decision to support
expansion of Heathrow. ……

The target is consistent with assumptions that it is prudent not to plan for net
credit purchase by the aviation industry further out to 2050, and that other
countries will be operating under similar constraints on aviation emissions:

• The fact that the target is set in terms of gross rather than net emissions (i.e.
it relates to actual emissions rather than emissions net of purchase of credits
from other sectors or from the international carbon markets) reflects an
assumption that the supply of cheap credits will be exhausted over time and
that it is therefore important for the aviation sector to focus on reducing its
own emissions.


 

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The chart given by the CCC in their guidance shows management of demand for air travel as a key part of keeping UK aviation emissions down.

By contrast, the chart  ( from “Sustainable Aviation” substitutes carbon trading for reduction in air passenger demand, therefore being contrary to the CCC advice.

The two charts, for comparison:

In the Heathrow document “Taking Britain further” here are the relevant extracts on carbon emissions and local air quality:

 http://www.heathrowairport.com/static/HeathrowAboutUs/Downloads/PDF/taking_britain_further.pdf

Page 43
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Heathrow CO2 emissions chart to 2050

[By contrast, the Committee on Climate Change had a less unrealistic scenario for future UK aviation emissions. ]

Page 145

http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/CCC-Aviation-Dec-2009-recommendation.pdf

CCC aviation emissions forecasts 2009

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Heathrow still has a mountain to climb in persuading politicians about its 3rd runway

Writing in a blog, the day Heathrow submitted their runway plans to the Airports Commission, John Stewart (Chair of Hacan, the community group for people affected by the noise from Heathrow flight paths) says Heathrow still has a mountain to climb.  Their revised 3rd runway plan shows they understand the need to pull out all the stops to make it politically deliverable.  They appreciate that unless there are enough “goodies” for voters living under the flight paths and around Heathrow, governments will continue to be reluctant to commit to a 3rd runway.  It is the proposals to deal with noise and community destruction that most politicians will be interested in. The view in the “Heathrow villages” of the offers of slightly higher than necessary payments to those facing compulsory purchase of their homes is that it will take much more than that to quell opposition.  Heathrow does now acknowledge that aircraft noise is a problem outside the discredited 57 noise contour but few are really persuaded there would be less noise with 260,000 more flights per year. Whether Heathrow can do enough to persuade politicians that a3rd runway is politically deliverable is still open to real doubt.  

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Heathrow still have a mountain to climb

Blog by John Stewart

Heathrow still have a mountain to climb.  Today’s launch of their revised plan for a third runway  link shows they understand the need to pull out all the stops to make it politically deliverable.  But it also shows the extent of the task they face.

Their last attempt to get a new runway ended in failure  link  Since then, they have changed their name and their tactics.

The new tactics were to the fore in today’s announcement.

There was a clear recognition that, unless there are enough “goodies” for voters living under the flight paths and around Heathrow, governments will continue to be reluctant to commit to a 3rd runway in case history repeats itself and they fail to deliver.

The climate impacts of a new runway are important – and the airport’s claims about CO2 need be assessed to see if they stand up – but it is the proposals to deal with noise and community destruction that most politicians will be interested in.

The offer to people in the 750 homes that Heathrow estimates will be demolished (down from 950 last time because the alignment of the new runway has been moved a little further south) is more generous than before:  the value of the house plus 25%; payment of relocation costs and any stamp duty.  It will be a tempting offer to many residents who have faced years of blight and uncertainty.  But what of those left behind yards from the new runway?    The immediate reaction we are getting is the Heathrow will need to do a lot more to quell local opposition to a third runway.  The quality of life in whole communities in places like Sipson, Harlington, Longford and West Drayton, as well as the village in the eye of the storm – Harmondsworth – will be changed forever.  With so much to lose, expect a big fight back.

The attempt to deal with noise for people living under the flight paths further afield is much more sophisticated than last time.  Quieter planes, improved operational practices and more respite periods are promised.  Runway alternation is guaranteed – long gone is any thought of all-day flying on any runway.  And there is an acknowledgement that aircraft noise is a problem outside the discredited 57 noise contour.  All this is welcome – and, indeed most of the proposals need not be dependent on a new runway – but could I convince our members in Hounslow, Ealing, Richmond, Windsor, Clapham, Brockley and Tower Hamlets that their noise climate will be less disturbing with a 3rdrunway and its extra 260,000 flights a year?   They would tell me it would need a miracle.  And, so far, Heathrow have not proved they can deliver that miracle.

And then there’s Heathrow M25 problem.  Heathrow has said that 600 metres would go into a tunnel with a runway built over the top.  Possible in engineering terms but messy, disruptive and costly.  Any government would want to know how much it would be expected to cough up.

 Heathrow has tried to show it can deal with the air pollution and traffic problems around the airport through a mix of a congestion charge on cars using the airport and improved public transport links.  The proposals are proof that Heathrow is addressing these problems with a seriousness that was missing previously.  Only time will tell whether they have done enough to convince the Airports Commission and any future government to take a punt on a third runway.

 And all the time Gatwick – and also still Boris Island– are breathing down Heathrow’s neck.  Heathrow’s strongest argument has always been its economic case, principally the fact that, with a new runway, it could have direct links to around 40 more destinations (although all these destinations can already be reached with just one change).  However it still hasn’t been able to shake off the challenge of the other airports.

 Liverpool, with a new manager and a new style of play, fell just short of winning the League title this season.  Like Liverpool, Heathrow are adopting a much more creative approach.  Whether they can do enough to persuade politicians that a third runway is politically deliverable is still open to real doubt.  The top prize may remain out of reach.

http://hacan.org.uk/blog/?p=285

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 See earlier:

Heathrow publishes glossy 48 page document promoting its north-west 3rd runway plans

Heathrow airport has released a glossy 48 page document, for the public, promoting its north-west runway option. The document is very high on spin, aspiration, laudable future hopes and intentions of all sorts – but very thin on any detail of how these might realistically happen. Wishful thinking, writ large. For instance, on carbon emission, there are hopes of huge cuts through aircraft not yet invented, fuels also not yet in existence, and carbon trading – not yet in existence. Heathrow makes 10 commitments, but gives no detail about time-scale or who would enforce these commitments, or what would be the penalty for failing to deliver them. There are hopes of better air quality near the airport, 100,000 new jobs, £100 billion (no time scale given – probably over years ….) to the UK economy, and a lot on listening to the public. There are some very carefully chosen sentences about the increase in aircraft noise and numbers affected. Heathrow says it will reduce aircraft noise etc ….”by encouraging the world’s quietest aircraft to use Heathrow, routing aircraft higher over London, delivering periods with no aircraft overhead and allocating £250m to provide noise insulation.”  The airport will submit its plans to the Airports Commission on 14th May.

Click here to view full story…


What Heathrow’s 3rd runway proposal says on noise (not very convincing)

Heathrow’s publicity document on its 3rd runway plans has quite a lot on noise, as Heathrow realises that the noise generated by its aircraft is a key political topic, and is perhaps the main issue that would stop the runway. Having a new runway would mean the number of annual flights could increase by up to 260,000 per year (compared to the current 470,000 or so). This would inevitably create a huge amount more noise. But by only considering the people within the loudest noise contours (noise averaged over many hours each day) – the 57dBALeq countour and the 55dbLden contour – and not those who experience aircraft noise, but not quite as loudy, Heathrow claims fewer people will experience noise. This is manifestly not the truth. There may be slightly fewer, by massaging the figures, in the noisiest contours. But there will be many more experiencing aircraft noise, if not at the most intense levels. Already people miles from the airport, outside any current contour, are troubled and disturbed by aircraft noise. The document provides various maps and charts to try and make their point. The concept of respite periods is key in Heathrow’s attempts to win over the over-flown public, and those yet to be over-flown. Heathrow  new and old noise 1

Click here to view full story…


What Heathrow’s 3rd runway proposal says on carbon emissions and air quality (very little)

Just taking the parts on carbon emissions and air quality from Heathrow’s promotional document for its 3rd runway, the claims can be seen to be ambitious, or perhaps unrealistic. Tellingly they forget to mention carbon emissions in the press release, other than to say there is one of their 10 “commitments” (no indication how these are to be enforced) that they will “Keep CO2 emissions within UK climate change targets”. This appears to be largely on hopes of more efficient operation, plus planes as yet unbuilt, carbon trading systems as yet not in existence, and new fuels (they don’t actually mention biofuels), which also do not exist. On local air quality standards, which the Heathrow area currently often breaches, Heathrow says it wants a local congestion charge to reduce vehicle journeys, a lot more public transport (paid for by taxpayer?) and another commitment (enforcement?) to “Increase the proportion of passengers using public transport to access Heathrow to more than 50%”. They also depend on road vehicle engines in future emitting less NO2 than at present.

Click here to view full story…

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What Heathrow’s 3rd runway proposal says on carbon emissions and air quality (very little)

Just taking the parts on carbon emissions and air quality from Heathrow’s promotional document for its 3rd runway, the claims can be seen to be ambitious, or perhaps unrealistic.  Tellingly they forget to  mention carbon emissions in the press release, other than to say there is one of their 10 “commitments” (no indication how these are to be enforced) that they will “Keep CO2 emissions within UK climate change targets”. This appears to be largely on hopes of more efficient operation, plus planes as yet unbuilt, carbon trading systems as yet  not in existence, and new fuels (they don’t actually mention biofuels), which also do not exist.  On local air quality standards, which the Heathrow area currently often breaches, Heathrow says it wants a local congestion charge to reduce vehicle journeys, a lot more public transport (paid for by taxpayer?) and another commitment (enforcement?) to “Increase the proportion of passengers using public transport to access Heathrow to more than 50%”. They also depend on road vehicle engines in future emitting less NO2 than at present.

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 Extracts from the Heathrow press release, relating to carbon emissions and to local air quality :

Press release  (13.5.2014) at    link

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  • New section of M25 to be tunnelled and upgraded alongside the existing section, increasing capacity and reducing congestion without disrupting road users.

Heathrow’s 10 commitments

If Government supports a third runway we will:

  1. Increase the proportion of passengers using public transport to access Heathrow to more than 50%

by supporting new rail, bus and coach schemes to improve public transport to Heathrow and considering the case for a congestion charge

  1. Keep CO2 emissions within UK climate change targets and play our part in meeting local air quality limits

by incentivising cleaner aircraft, supporting global carbon trading, and increasing public transport use

That’s all there is …..


In the Heathrow document “Taking Britain further” here are the relevant extracts on carbon emissions and local air quality:

 http://www.heathrowairport.com/static/HeathrowAboutUs/Downloads/PDF/taking_britain_further.pdf

Page 43
“We will cut carbon emissions from airport energy use by 60% compared to today
The Airports Commission’s interim report and the Committee on Climate Change have found that a third runway is compatible with the UK meeting its climate change reduction targets. We are also committed to making the construction and operation of a third runway as low carbon as possible. The airport [ie buildings etc on the ground - not flights] in 2030 will produce 60% less carbon from energy use compared to 2010. This will be achieved by a combination of technologies including ground source heat pumps, thin film photovoltaics, and combined heat and power.”
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Heathrow CO2 emissions chart to 2050

[By contrast, the Committee on Climate Change had a less unrealistic scenario for future UK aviation emissions. ]

CCC aviation emissions forecasts 2009
” Expansion should only go ahead within strict limits on noise, local air quality and within the UK’s climate change targets. There isn’t a choice between more flights or less noise. Heathrow can deliver both “
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 “We believe there is a case for introducing a congestion charging zone  (Page 36)
Once public transport improvements have been delivered, we believe there is a case for reducing vehicles journeys to Heathrow by introducing a new congestion charge zone. This would improve air quality and reduce congestion while raising money for public transport improvements.
“The charge would discourage passengers from using cars and subsidise public transport for those who adopt more sustainable travel plans. The charge would only apply to those travelling to the airport – not those using surrounding roads like the A4, A30, M4 or M25. We envisage that there could be exemptions in place for the greenest vehicles,
the local community and for taxis. Funds could be ring-fenced to pay for transport schemes and local community improvements. Heathrow will be able to deliver more flights without increasing the traffic on the road due to the airport”
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 “Better air quality than today  ()age 42)
We can add capacity at Heathrow while meeting all air pollution limits. New public transport options will provide an alternative to travelling to the airport by road. A congestion charge would provide a new mechanism for managing demand and ensuring there will be no more Heathrow-related vehicles on the roads than today. Those vehicles that are travelling to the airport will be cleaner. Combined with new aircraft technology this means that levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) would be within EU limits. Levels of fine particles (PM10 and PM2.5) are already within the limits and would continue to be with a third runway.
“We will operate a Clean Vehicles Programme to promote low and zero emissions vehicles among airport companies. In addition, we host the UK’s first publicly accessible hydrogen refuelling site and are increasing the number of electric vehicle charging points at our passenger car parks.”
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Heathrow publishes glossy 48 page document promoting its north-west 3rd runway plans

Heathrow airport has released a glossy 48 page document, for the public, promoting its north-west runway option. The document is very high on spin, aspiration, laudable future hopes and intentions of all sorts – but  very thin on any detail of how these might realistically happen.  Wishful thinking, writ large. For instance, on carbon emission, there are hopes of huge cuts through aircraft not yet invented, fuels also not yet in existence, and carbon trading – not yet in existence.  Heathrow makes 10 commitments, but gives no detail about time-scale or who would enforce these commitments, or what would be the penalty for failing to deliver them. There are hopes of better air quality near the airport, 100,000 new jobs, £100 billion (no time scale given – probably over years ….) to the UK economy,  and a lot on listening to the public. There are some very carefully chosen sentences about the increase in aircraft noise and numbers affected. Heathrow says it will reduce aircraft noise etc ….”by encouraging the world’s quietest aircraft to use Heathrow, routing aircraft higher over London, delivering periods with no aircraft overhead and allocating £250m to provide noise insulation.”  
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 The 48 page document is at  “Taking Britain forward”

Heathrow says:

“Expanded Heathrow critical to UK economy. Over 100,000 new jobs created. Economic benefits of at least £100bn. Forty new long haul destinations”

13 May, 2014 ( Heathrow airport website )

TBF - 3rd runway day rgb

Improved expansion proposals published by Heathrow today are the only way to connect all of the UK to growth.

Heathrow says:

Heathrow today announced an improved plan to expand the UK’s hub airport that will create more than 100,000 new UK jobs and at least £100bn of UK economic benefits by connecting all of the UK to global growth.

The figures are part of Heathrow’s revised expansion plans that will be submitted tomorrow to the Airports Commission. The submission follows discussions with local residents and businesses, the public, businesses around the country, passengers, airlines and elected representatives across the UK’s nations and regions. Heathrow is the UK’s only hub and the only option that will connect the whole of the UK to new emerging economies, bringing jobs and prosperity to the country. It is deliverable, fundable and will create a world-class global gateway to make Britain proud. And it proposes to go further than any other large-scale UK infrastructure project in compensating for its impact on surrounding communities.

Key elements of Heathrow’s proposals include:

  • Every nation and region of Britain to be connected to global markets:
    • More than 100,000 new jobs created. This includes 50,000 new jobs in the local Heathrow area, plus a further 20,000+ across London and another 50,000+ across the UK.
    • At least £100bn of UK economic benefits, better than any other airport expansion option.
    • 40 new direct, daily routes to fast growing economies such as San José, Wuhan and Kolkata.
    • Doubling cargo capacity to improve UK export competitiveness. 65% of the UK’s £400bn freight exports already travel via Heathrow.
    • New rail access to Wales and the West through the Western mainline, the South and South West through Southern Rail Access, and the North through HS2. Total rail capacity will treble from 5,000 to 15,000 seats per hour.
    • A Taskforce for Regional Connectivity will be established to develop proposals for how regional air links to Heathrow can be improved. Additional capacity will provide space for flights to cities such as Inverness, Liverpool and Newquay.
    • Investment in airport infrastructure will create jobs across the UK while a new runway is being built

 

We’ve listened to local views and developed a significantly different expansion proposition to 2007, and an improvement on our initial proposal in July 2013:

  • By 2030, at least a 30% reduction in the number of people in Heathrow’s noise footprint to deliver the lowest noise levels since the 1970s.
  • Located farther south, the updated runway proposal affects 200 fewer homes, preserves historical buildings in Harmondsworth and maintains the existing M25/M4 junction.
  • New section of M25 to be tunnelled and upgraded alongside the existing section, increasing capacity and reducing congestion without disrupting road users.
  • 12,000 fewer people will be affected by significant noise by moving the proposed runway farther south.
  • A total compensation fund of over £550m allocated for noise insulation and property compensation. This is more generous than previously proposed for a third runway and proposals for most other infrastructure projects. (Proposed residential property compensation includes: 25% above market value for properties subject to compulsory purchase; stamp-duty costs on a new home; legal fees paid).
  • Improvements in schools, publicly accessible green space and flood protection for local communities.
  • A deliverable, world-class hub and global-gateway to make Britain proud:
    • Heathrow offers the fastest, most cost effective and most practical route to delivering new hub capacity. Costs are estimated at £15.6bn, all of which would be privately funded. Government support for surface access improvements would be required and is estimated at £1.2bn.
    • A third runway would be delivered by 2025.
    • A third runway has local support. 57% of local people say they have a positive view of the airport compared to just 6% who have a negative view. 48% of local people support Heathrow expansion compared to 34% who are opposed. And in the last six months 20,000 people have joined Back Heathrow to campaign in support of the jobs and opportunities that expansion would bring.
    • A new Heathrow West and Heathrow East layout would mean two, easy to navigate points of entry, improving passenger experience.
    • A single transit system to bring connection times in line with competitor hub airports.
    • Heathrow has successfully delivered £11bn of infrastructure safely, on time, on budget and to high quality without affecting the operation of one of the world’s busiest airports. The new Terminal 2, which will open in June, has been the safest construction project in the UK and has used a UK-wide supply-chain.

John Holland-Kaye, Development Director and Chief Executive Designate of Heathrow said:

“Expansion at Heathrow matters to the whole country. Only Heathrow will connect all of the UK to fast growing international markets. The plans we are submitting to the Airports Commission demonstrate major economic benefits from a third runway for the whole of the UK.

“Expansion at Heathrow has national and local support. We have worked closely with local residents, listened to their concerns and improved our plans. Our submission reduces the number of properties that would need to be purchased and the number of people affected by significant noise. We would establish a fund to enhance local amenities and compensate residents more generously than previous UK infrastructure projects.

“Our plans are deliverable. Heathrow offers the fastest, most cost effective and practical route to connect the whole of the UK to growth and we have proven our ability to deliver a world-class hub that will make Britain proud. Building on Heathrow’s existing strength will connect the whole of the UK to growth, keep Britain as an ambitious global nation and help the UK win the global race.”

Notes to editors

Why expansion at Heathrow is critical now

There is a compelling case for a third runway at Heathrow.

As an island trading nation, good international transport links have been a source of competitive advantage for the UK. Now that advantage is being eroded. Our global hub airport is full, and is unable to add flights to fast growing destinations.

Britain’s other airports have an important role to play but cannot compete with foreign hubs which make long-haul flights viable by mixing transfer passengers, direct passengers and freight.

So Britain faces a choice.

We can have the confidence and vision to develop our own hub into a world-class gateway for the 21st century, or we can accept that in future much of the world will not be able to fly to Britain direct.

Heathrow’s proposal is deliverable – environmentally, practically, financially, and politically. It offers a different and improved approach from the previous proposals for a third runway, with less noise and less environmental impact.

The potential prize to be gained by taking a positive decision is huge: thousands of new jobs, more trade, more investment, and more growth. With new rail and air links the whole country will benefit.

Britain already has one of the world’s most successful hub airports in Heathrow. Building on this strength will connect the UK to growth and help the UK win the global race.

Heathrow will take British people and businesses farther with the long-haul routes it provides that no other UK airport can.

Heathrow will also take Britain further by supporting the trade, inbound tourism and investment that will deliver the jobs and economic growth we need.

It’s time to make a positive decision for future generations and for all of Britain.

Only Heathrow can connect the whole of the UK to growth.

Heathrow’s 10 commitments

If Government supports a third runway we will:

  1. Connect Britain to economic growth

by enabling airlines to add new long-haul flights to fast-growing markets

  1. Connect UK nations and regions to global markets

by working with airlines and Government to deliver better air and rail links between UK regions and Heathrow

  1. Protect more than 100,000 existing local jobs and create more than 100,000 new jobs nationwide

by developing our local employment, apprenticeships and skills programmes and supporting a supply chain throughout the UK, including during construction

  1. Connect exporters to global markets

by doubling Heathrow’s freight handling capacity

  1. Build more quickly and at lower cost to taxpayers than building a new airport

by building on the strength the UK already has at Heathrow

  1. Reduce aircraft noise and lessen noise impacts for people under flight paths

by encouraging the world’s quietest aircraft to use Heathrow, routing aircraft higher over London, delivering periods with no aircraft overhead and allocating £250m to provide noise insulation

  1. Treat those most affected by a third runway fairly

by proposing compensation of 25% above market value, all legal fees, and stamp duty costs for a new home for anyone whose home needs to be purchased

  1. Increase the proportion of passengers using public transport to access Heathrow to more than 50%

by supporting new rail, bus and coach schemes to improve public transport to Heathrow and considering the case for a congestion charge

  1. Keep CO2 emissions within UK climate change targets and play our part in meeting local air quality limits

by incentivising cleaner aircraft, supporting global carbon trading, and increasing public transport use

  1. Reduce delays and disruption

by eliminating the routine use of aircraft stacks and further improving Heathrow’s resilience to weather and unforeseen events

  • Report ‘Taking Britain Further’ is available on the Heathrow website.
  • The document (48 pages, glossy, very  low on real detail) is at

  • Heathrow 3rd runway May 2014 “Taking Britain further

  • http://mediacentre.heathrowairport.com/Press-releases/Expanded-Heathrow-critical-to-UK-economy-Over-100-000-new-jobs-created-Economic-benefits-of-at-lea-8cf.aspx
  • .
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  • What Heathrow’s 3rd runway proposal says on carbon emissions and air quality (very little)

    Just taking the parts on carbon emissions and air quality from Heathrow’s promotional document for its 3rd runway, the claims can be seen to be ambitious, or perhaps unrealistic. Tellingly they forget to mention carbon emissions in the press release, other than to say there is one of their 10 “commitments” (no indication how these are to be enforced) that they will “Keep CO2 emissions within UK climate change targets”. This appears to be largely on hopes of more efficient operation, plus planes as yet unbuilt, carbon trading systems as yet not in existence, and new fuels (they don’t actually mention biofuels), which also do not exist. On local air quality standards, which the Heathrow area currently often breaches, Heathrow says it wants a local congestion charge to reduce vehicle journeys, a lot more public transport (paid for by taxpayer?) and another commitment (enforcement?) to “Increase the proportion of passengers using public transport to access Heathrow to more than 50%”. They also depend on road vehicle engines in future emitting less NO2 than at present.

    Click here to view full story…

  • .
  • .

  • .
  • What Heathrow’s 3rd runway proposal says on noise (not very convincing)

    Heathrow’s publicity document on its 3rd runway plans has quite a lot on noise, as Heathrow realises that the noise generated by its aircraft is a key political topic, and is perhaps the main issue that would stop the runway. Having a new runway would mean the number of annual flights could increase by up to 260,000 per year (compared to the current 470,000 or so). This would inevitably create a huge amount more noise. But by only considering the people within the loudest noise contours (noise averaged over many hours each day) – the 57dBALeq countour and the 55dbLden contour – and not those who experience aircraft noise, but not quite as loudy, Heathrow claims fewer people will experience noise. This is manifestly not the truth. There may be slightly fewer, by massaging the figures, in the noisiest contours. But there will be many more experiencing aircraft noise, if not at the most intense levels. Already people miles from the airport, outside any current contour, are troubled and disturbed by aircraft noise. The document provides various maps and charts to try and make their point. The concept of respite periods is key in Heathrow’s attempts to win over the over-flown public, and those yet to be over-flown.

    Click here to view full story..


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  • Heathrow still has a mountain to climb in persuading politicians about its 3rd runway

    Writing in a blog, the day Heathrow submitted their runway plans to the Airports Commission, John Stewart (Chair of Hacan, the community group for people affected by the noise from Heathrow flight paths) says Heathrow still has a mountain to climb. Their revised 3rd runway plan shows they understand the need to pull out all the stops to make it politically deliverable. They appreciate that unless there are enough “goodies” for voters living under the flight paths and around Heathrow, governments will continue to be reluctant to commit to a 3rd runway. It is the proposals to deal with noise and community destruction that most politicians will be interested in. The view in the “Heathrow villages” of the offers of slightly higher than necessary payments to those facing compulsory purchase of their homes is that it will take much more than that to quell opposition. Heathrow does now acknowledge that aircraft noise is a problem outside the discredited 57 noise contour but few are really persuaded there would be less noise with 260,000 more flights per year. Whether Heathrow can do enough to persuade politicians that a3rd runway is politically deliverable is still open to real doubt.

    Click here to view full story…

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