Awards ceremonies and the process of winning awards is an amazing business. Almost anything can get an award of some sort, especially if you are one of the sponsors of the award. If you want to think of any one place in the UK that is responsible for more air pollution or more carbon emissions, you will find few that beat Heathrow. But no. Heathrow has now won yet another (it has won two before) environmental award. This time it is from West London Business Awards. Heathrow was the winner in the “Green Business of the Year” category. The runner up was another sponsor of the awards, Westfield. As the local paper reports, with a tremendous Freudian slip, the Heathrow schemes were successful in ….”reduced local air quality levels.” This has all been too much for a local resident, who has “improved” on the local newspaper story, with a slight twist …. to report on the comedy awards. One of the reasons for their award was “encouraging the use of car sharing”, which is slightly spoilt by a photo, by the local writer, of a huge billboard advertising Heathrow’s new business car park.
Below is the story as it appeared in the local paper. To see a version, “improved” by a local wag, incredulous about the award, see below here).
Heathrow’s green win at West London Business awards
The airport was recognised for its continuous efforts in adapting aviation schemes to reduce their carbon footprint and improve local air quality through using newer, lower emissions aircrafts, emissions-based landing charges and encouraging the use of car sharing.
In addition, Heathrow has lowered its NOx (Nitrogen Oxide) emissions through using hybrid buses in the free travel zone around the airport, more electric vehicles used at the airport, and hosted the UK’s first hydrogen fuelling station, as part of its pledge to deliver reduced NOx emissions by 5% by 2020.
Heathrow’s director of sustainability, Matt Gorman, said: “Heathrow Airport has and continues to be a major economic driver in our region, and an indispensable part of London’s business community.
“We believe the benefits Heathrow brings need not come at the expense of local air quality, and we are committed to reducing our environmental impacts and acting a good neighbour to local residents.
“That is why this recognition is so important to us, and why we will continue to work to maintain our place as West London’s greenest business.”
Heathrow beat the likes of Westfield London in White City, who were highly commended, in the green business category for their Green Academy programme that diverts all waste produced from landfill and has increased recycling levels among other environmentally friendly initiatives.
West London Business chief executive, Frank Wingate, said: “Well done to Heathrow for winning the Green Award at the West London Business Awards.
“The airport has put in a lot of work in recent years to meet its environmental challenges and our judges were impressed by both the scale of the work and the measurable achievements, in what was a very competitive category.
“This is an aspect of Heathrow’s work that is not generally recognised.”
Heathrow win big at West London Business’ Comedy Awards sponsored by Heathrow.
To hysterical laughter the greenest business of the year title was scooped by Heathrow Airport at the West London Business Comedy Awards last week.
As the crowd sniggered, the airport was recognised for its continuous efforts in adapting aviation schemes to reduce their carbon footprint and improve local air quality through using newer, lower emissions aircraft, emissions-based landing charges and encouraging the use of car sharing. See photo below.
Heathrow’s Head of Comedy, Matt Gorman, said: “Heathrow Airport has and continues to be a major economic driver in our region, and an indispensable part of London’s comedy community.
He continued, “We believe the benefits Heathrow brings need not come at the expense of local air quality, and we are committed to reducing our environmental impacts and acting a good neighbour to local residents.”
The gag about ‘acting’ like a good neighbour made someone laugh so much they nearly choked on their corporate prawn cracker.
“That is why this recognition is so important to us, and why we will continue to work to maintain our place as West London’s greenest business.” Stop it Matt, someone will crack a rib !!!!!
The headline act at the comedy awards was West London Business Executive Comedian, Frank ‘Loads of Money’ Wingate.
The room full of professional Heathrow comedians know when a master is at work and they roared as Frank performed his trademark entrance of pushing a wheelbarrow of Heathrow cash on to the stage and shouting China! China! China!
“The airport has put in a lot of work in recent years to meet its environmental challenges and our judges were impressed by both the scale of the work and the measurable achievements, in what was a very competitive category” Frank Wingate continued, with a straight face.
“This ranks as highly as the previous Green winners at our last three comedy awards, the owners of Chernobyl, BP in the Gulf of Mexico and our partners, the Chinese Government.
Then with another rousing cry of China! China! China, Frank and his wheelbarrow left the stage as Rob Gray went up to collect his Comedy Award for entering The Guinness Book of Records in the Imaginary Friends section.
What a night!
Other awards Heathrow airport has won:
Heathrow has been winning awards for decades – here’s a selection of those we’ve collected in recent years:
Best Airport for Tax Free shopping – Business Traveller Awards
Terminal 5 – Best Airport Terminal – Skytrax World Airport Awards
Best Airport for Shopping – Skytrax World Airport Awards
Heathrow Commuter Team – Transport Team of the Year – London Transport Awards
Biodiversity Benchmark Award – Wildlife Trust
Terminal 2 building – Sustainability Leaders Award
‘Champion of Champions’ for environmental performance – Green Apple Awards
Best European Airport for Families – Skyscanner Awards
Best Airport Shopping Business – Business Traveller Awards
World’s Best Airport – Runner up – Conde Nast Traveller Awards
Best International Airport – Executive Travel 2013 Leading Edge Awards
Best Airport (over 25 million passengers) – ACI EUROPE Awards
Heathrow Express – Best Ground Transportation (Europe) Award – Business Destinations magazine
Platinum Big Tick – Business in the Community Awards
Best Airport Shopping Worldwide – Skytrax World Airport Awards
Terminal 5 – Best Airport Terminal – Skytrax World Airport Awards
Terminal 5 – Best Airport Terminal – Skytrax World Airport Awards AwardsFamilyfriendly programme member – Silver winner – mumsnet
Best Airport for Tax-Free Shopping – Business Traveller Awards
Best Airport for arrival experience for the Games Programme – Future Travel Experience.
Best International Airport Worldwide – Executive Travel
Terminal 2 B – Gold Award – Green Apple Awards
Best Food and Beverage in the World – Food and Beverage Awards
Heathrow Sustainability Partnership – Best Sustainability Collaboration Winner – Ethical Corporation Global Responsible Business Awards
Best Airport Operator of the Year – Frontier awards in Cannes
Best Overall Airport Food and Beverage Offer – Food and Beverage Awards
Terminal 5 – Best Design of Food and Beverage – Food and Beverage Awards
Terminal 5 – Best Airport – Travel Agents Choice Awards
Best Airport for Tax-Free Shopping – Business Traveller Magazine
Best Airport Shopping Worldwide – Skytrax Awards
Best Pay Per Click Campaign – Travel Marketing Awards
Best PR Strategic Campaign – A Week at the Airport – Travel Marketing Awards
The head of the Manchester airports group, that owns Manchester and Stansted airports, among others, says the government must not forget about its pledge to tackle the North-South divide when setting aviation policy.Speaking at the RunwaysUK event in Manchester on 2nd December, Charlie Cornish said there is more to the debate than just looking at boosting capacity at Heathrow or Gatwick – as is the proposal by the Airports Commission. He said there was a “strong economic case” for regional airports to be “more than spokes” serving a southern hub, as he cited investments by Emirates and Etihad which have created hundreds of jobs in the North West. “There should be a network of competing airports in the UK, especially if you consider the opportunity presented by rail enhancements. With HS2 and HS3 there is an opportunity for regions in the UK to actually start to narrow the North- South divide. The Chancellor’s support for the Northern Powerhouse is fundamentally important to rebalancing the UK economy.” MAG expects their airports to “grow irrespective of the decisions made on Heathrow or Gatwick”
MAG boss calls for regional perspective in aviation debate
3rd December 2014
By Chris Barry – Editor, North West (The Business Desk)
Charlie Cornish, chief executive of Manchester Airports Group
THE government must not forget about its pledge to tackle the North-South divide when setting aviation policy, the boss of Manchester Airports Group has said.
Speaking to TheBusinessDesk at the Runways UK event on Tuesday, Charlie Cornish said there is more to the debate than just looking at boosting capacity at Heathrow or Gatwick – as is the proposal by the Airports Commission.
Mr Cornish said there was a “strong economic case” for regional airports to be “more than spokes” serving a southern hub, as he cited investments by Emirates and Etihad which have created hundreds of jobs in the North West.
He said: “There should be a network of competing airports in the UK, especially if you consider the opportunity presented by rail enhancements.
“With HS2 and HS3 there is an opportunity for regions in the UK to actually start to narrow the North- South divide.
“The Chancellor’s support for the Northern Powerhouse is fundamentally important to rebalancing the UK economy. If we look at High Speed 2 coming to the Manchester Airport and we get east- west connectivity in rail improvements too then that’s going to change the northern base.”
He added: “When the government starts to think about how they want the UK to develop, they have to think more than the outputs from the South East, but all of the outputs from all the rail investment propositions, the Northern Powerhouse and what they want to do about the North South divide. It’s not just a simple matter.”
He said that he expects his two largest assets, Manchester and Stansted to continue to grow regardless of the Airport Commission’s final recommendations.
In the next five years he said Manchester’s passenger growth would rise from 22 million to more than 25 million, while Stansted, which is operating a 50% capacity would double in size by 2030.
“Our plans will see MAG airports grow irrespective of the decisions made on Heathrow or Gatwick,” he said.
6.5 Aviation in the UK is largely privately owned and managed, and the government believes that a competitive aviation market is the most effective way to meet the interests of
air passengers and other users. The government’s role is primarily to uphold a strong
international and domestic regulatory framework which ensures a level playing field and
the maintenance of high standards of safety and security. Within this framework the Civil
Aviation Authority is responsible for regulating airports which pass a market power test
under the Civil Aviation Act 2012 (currently Heathrow and Gatwick).
6.6 In order to ensure that the UK is well placed to maintain its aviation hub capability, the
government has appointed an independent Airports Commission to examine the scale and
timing of airport capacity needs in the South East and to identify how they should be met.
The Commission has been asked to assess the options for meeting the UK’s international
connectivity needs, and recommend the optimum approach to meet those needs.
6.7 The government also recognises the importance of maximising the capacity and
connectivity of existing airport infrastructure. This includes:
• encouraging ongoing programmes of private investment at airports across the UK
• optimising existing capacity through the adoption of innovative operational
approaches and new technology
• taking action to improve the quality of surface transport links to existing airports
6.8 The government is also taking action to maintain regional air access to London where
there is the probability that an existing service would be lost, and to allow start-up aid for
new routes from UK regional airports handling fewer than 5 million passengers per annum,
in order to underpin the role of aviation in promoting local growth and connectivity.
6.9 Across all these measures, the government’s policy is to manage the environmental
impact of aviation including limiting and, where possible, reducing the number of people in
the UK significantly affected by aircraft noise.
16.13 In the aviation sector the decision has been taken to move away from a geographic split (South East and Regional Airports) to priority investments which address objectives more directly (Airport Infrastructure Improvements and Airport Connectivity).
Full list of Top 40 priority infrastructure investments in NIP 2014 includes the A6 to Manchester Airport Relief Road in projects up to 2020 /21
3.17 As part of RIS1, the government has also asked the new Strategic Highways Company to explore the feasibility of further transformational investments including:
• consideration of further improvements for trans-pennine connectivity from Manchester
to Sheffield, raising the level of future ambition and determining if there is an historic
opportunity to link two of our great northern cities; this work will be taken forward with
Transport for the North as part of the development of the wider Northern transport
Heathrow held a consultation on compensation arrangements earlier in the year. Hacan did not take part, believing people should not have to agree to, or comment on, entirely hypothetical proposals. Now Heathrow has felt the need to improve the generosity and scope of its compensation offer, due the manifest unfairness of its previous offer. It will now extend the offer to buy houses, for pre-blight market price plus 25%, and with £7,500 for selling costs and stamp duty. This will now cover all of Harmondsworth, Sipson, Poyle, Colnbrook, Brands Hill, Harlington and Cranford Cross. There will no longer be unfair lines, with those just outside the line missing out. There would be about 3,750 people included in the scheme. The earlier offer was for only 750 properties in Sipson and Harmondsworth that would be subject to compulsory purchase orders if there was a north west runway. Realising that communities die, and their spirit is lost, as soon as many people decide to accept cash and move out, Heathrow says they will “refurbish and sound-insulate any properties it buys before putting them back up for sale” in the forlorn hope that would prevent the community from losing its heart?
Heathrow press release:
Heathrow announces new proposals to support homeowners affected by airport expansion following local consultation
Enhanced package includes an offer to buy homes in villages in close proximity to a new runway at 25% above unblighted market value
New scheme shaped by feedback from local residents at consultation events
Homeowners will have the choice of remaining in their current home
Heathrow has announced plans to extend its property compensation scheme should an additional runway be built at the airport. In May the airport announced plans for 25% above unblighted market value compensation for 750 homes that would be subject to compulsory purchase.
Having listened to local residents, Heathrow is now proposing to extend this offer to cover homes that will be in close proximity to a new runway but will not be compulsorily purchased.
Under the improved scheme, residents living in communities close to a new runway will have the choice to either remain in their home or sell their home at 25% above unblighted market value once the new runway is under construction.
For a £250,000 property, homeowners would receive £312,500, plus £7,500 stamp duty costs and any legal fees.
Homeowners in Poyle, Colnbrook, Brands Hill, Harmondsworth, Sipson, Harlington and Cranford Cross will be covered by the improved scheme.
Properties in Longford and parts of Sipson and Harmondsworth are covered by the previously announced compulsory purchase area scheme.
The proposal is in response to feedback heard at public consultations between 21st July and 12th October of this year.
Local people said they:
– welcome the proposal to offer 25% above market value compensation plus legal fees and stamp duty costs on homes that will be compulsorily purchased
– want the airport to recognise that a new runway will have an impact on homeowners close to the new boundary of the extended airport
– are concerned that property prices will be blighted in the areas close to the boundary of the extended airport
– want to avoid a situation where next door neighbours or homeowners on adjacent streets are entitled to different compensation
Some people in this area will want to remain in their homes if the airport is expanded, others will want the option of moving out of the area.
In response to this public feedback, Heathrow is:
– confirming its intention to offer 25% above unblighted market value compensation plus legal fees, plus stamp duty costs for anyone whose home will be compulsorily purchased
– extending this scheme to cover homeowners in close proximity to the new airport boundary whose homes do not need to be compulsorily purchased
– giving people the choice of remaining in their home or moving out of the area and receiving compensation
– announcing the scheme now, and including a 25% above unblighted market value premium, to avoid blight to property prices and to keep the local property market buoyant
– proposing a single, simple and easy-to-understand flat rate of 25% above unblighted market value compensation rather than different bands of compensation for different communities
- applying the proposal to homeowners in Poyle, Colnbrook, Brands Hill, Harmondsworth, Sipson, Harlington and Cranford Cross rather than having scheme boundaries that cut across communities
People also said they want local villages to retain a vibrant local community feel. Where Heathrow purchases a property from a homeowner it will refurbish and sound insulate the property before reselling it on the open market. This will give those people who want to leave the area the option of doing so but ensure those who remain still live in a functioning community. [How does that work then ? Sounds like hollow words. Very hollow words. AW comment].
The offer is subject to regulatory approval by the CAA. Approximately 3,750 homeowners’ properties would be eligible for compensation under the revised scheme.
John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow’s Chief Executive said:
“Our proposals for expansion at Heathrow have been developed with input from local communities. We are committed to treating people fairly. People told us that we should extend our offer to local homeowners living close to the airport, and we have listened.”
“Now we want to work with local communities to ensure that local people secure the jobs and growth that expansion at Heathrow will bring.”
Heathrow will be issuing its full response to the recent public consultation, including more details on property compensation and noise compensation and mitigation, in early 2015.
So for a house worth £275,000 (what the government calls an average family home) the Stamp Duty would have been £8,250, and it will now be £3,750, which is a saving of £4,500.
For a house worth £510,000 (what the government calls an average London home) the Stamp Duty would have been £20,400, and it will now be £15,500, which is a saving of £4,900.
Thousands living near to Heathrow Airport eligible for new compensation
1.12.2014 (Get West London)
by Will Ackerman
Around 3,750 people whose homes will not be subject to compulsory purchase orders will be offered 25% more than the market value of their properties if a 3rd runway is built.
Heathrow’s plans for a third runway to the north-west of the existing two
Thousands of home-owners living near to Heathrow Airport will be eligible for new compensation in the event of an expansion, under measures announced today (Monday, December 1).
Around 3,750 people will be offered 25 per cent more than the market value of their homes if a third runway is built.
Details of noise compensation for those who choose not to sell their properties are expected early next year.
The airport had previously announced plans to pay 25 per cent more than the unblighted market value for 750 properties in Sipson and Harmondsworth that will be subject to compulsory purchase orders (CPOs) if the project goes ahead.
Today’s measures extend to those living in Poyle, Colnbrook, Brands Hill, Harmondsworth, Sipson, Harlington and Cranford Cross, but whose houses will not be subject to CPOs.
John Holland-Kaye, Heathrow’s chief executive, said: “Our proposals for expansion at Heathrow have been developed with input from local communities. We are committed to treating people fairly. People told us that we should extend our offer to local homeowners living close to the airport, and we have listened.
“Now we want to work with local communities to ensure that local people secure the jobs and growth that expansion at Heathrow will bring.”
Heathrow Airport will offer the payouts to those living in Poyle, Colnbrook, Brands Hill, Harmondsworth, Sipson, Harlington and Cranford Cross. The map shows the boundary.
Under the new measures, the airport would also pay £7,500 for stamp duty costs and cover any legal fees for those wishing to sell their properties.
The airport would also refurbish and sound-insulate any properties it buys before putting them back up for sale.
John Stewart, head of the Heathrow Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise (HACAN), a group opposed to any expansion, described the payouts as ‘generous’.
He said: “It’s certainly a lot more generous than they are required to make, but I think extending this offer to more people was inevitable, because if people were forced to live so close to a new runway life would be unbearable.”
However, he added: “What will the [noise] compensation be? We don’t know. People need to know that in order to make an informed decision.”
The new measures were drawn up based on the results of public consultations held between July 21 and October 12 this year.
Residents’ fury at Heathrow compensation consultation
Furious residents have complained to campaign group HACAN about Heathrow Airport’s most recent consultation (1). Last week Heathrow released a three month consultation seeking people’s views on who should qualify for compensation if a third runway goes ahead. But residents have told HACAN that they feel they are being steamrollered into accepting the fact that a third runway is inevitable at a time when the Government has made no decision on the future of Heathrow.
HACAN Chair John Stewart said, “We get a constant stream of emails from people throughout the year but rarely have we been deluged with so many angry emails as we have had this past week over this consultation. People are simply not prepared to discuss compensation arising from a third runway they simply don’t want”.
Stewart added: “HACAN works with Heathrow Airport on issues like flight paths which can improve the quality of life for people affected by the existing Heathrow but we will not be responding to this consultation. We believe this consultation is putting the cart before the horse (2).”
The Airports Commission, which the Government set up to look at new runways in London and the South East, will not report for another year. It is looking at three possible options for expansion: a third runway at Heathrow; a second runway at Gatwick; or a brand new EstuaryAirport.
Heathrow campaign, HACAN, will not be taking part in the consultation on noise compensation, for a 3rd runway
August 2, 2014
On 21st July Heathrow published a consultation on how it hopes to persuade thousands of people, who would be badly affected by increased aircraft noise from its operations, to accept money as compensation. It is offering £550 million, if it is allowed to build a 3rd runway, in various schemes. The £550 million is a one-off, not an annual sum. The aim is to buy off opposition. The existence of the consultation aims to convey the impression that a 3rd runway is inevitable, and that Heathrow is being stunningly generous. Neither is true. The community group dealing in particular with noise due to Heathrow, HACAN, has had numerous complaints from residents who are furious about the assumptions being made in the Heathrow consultation. They do not like being steamrollered into discussions about compensation for something they deeply oppose. HACAN will not be taking any part in the consultation, and not encouraging its members to do so. They feel the compensation discussion “puts the cart before the horse”. Providing Heathrow with assistance in how best to win over residents, whose quality of life will be reduced by a new runway, is not in the interests of those overflown, now or in the future.
Heathrow residents to demand financial compensation for impact of Airports Commission report on their house prices
December 16, 2013
People with homes near Heathrow will press for financial compensation if the Airports Commission announces on 17th that they are backing a new Heathrow runway. As the Commission is not due to report till summer 2015, at the least they face blight and an impact on their house prices over the next 18 months, while they are held in limbo. Anti-Heathrow campaigners will appeal to Sir Howard Davies, chairman of the Airports Commission, to ensure homeowners receive financial support for the uncertainty and potential damage that the 17th December announcement may cause. The leak of the report suggests the Commission favours first one runway, and also a second runway at Heathrow. That would mean a large number of people across west London affected by one or other proposal. The issue of blight and house prices is key for thousands, let alone the threat of compulsory purchase and demolition. Boris Johnson has accused the Prime Minister of using the Commission just “to provide cover for a U-turn on Heathrow” and he continues to fiercely oppose Heathrow expanding.
If Heathrow airport was allowed to build its new north west runway, documents prepared for the Airports Commission by Jacobs indicate the cost of the works to tunnel the M25 (at its widest in that part of its circular route) could cost between £1.35bn to £3.22bn. How much Heathrow would pay is not yet clear. The cost would depend on the length of motorway affected and the cost per kilometre. Recent work to widen the M25 cost £3.4 billion for 35 kilometres. The Commission thinks that figure is too high, though it included 30 years-worth of maintenance (costing 20% of the total). The cost of the work should perhaps be around £50 million per kilometre, or more. The Commission says: “We note that the airport operator has suggested funding 50% of these works, with the remaining 50% borne by the public sector. The Airports Commission has not taken a view as to the split of funding between private and public sources and believes that this would be a matter for negotiation should the scheme be taken forward.” By contrast the Government spent £2.3 billion on floor prevention for the 4 years 2011 to 2015.
By contrast, the Telegraph states (2.12.2014 link ) that:
“Plans for a new settlement in Bicester, Oxfordshire, containing up to 13,000 homes, will be funded with nearly £100 million of public spending and loans.”
“Some 5.2 million properties are at risk of flooding in England. Annual flood damage costs are in the region of £1.1 billion. These costs could rise to as much as £27 billion by 2080. It has been estimated that maintaining existing levels of flood defence would require flood defence spending to increase to over £1 billion per year by 2035.” Link – Commons Library Standard Note.
“The Treasury is today revealing the projects that will receive a share of the £2.3 billion already earmarked for capital spending on flood defences over the next six years to improve protection for 300,000 homes.” 2.12.2014 (Friends of the Earth link )
“Under the Heathrow plan, a 600-metre, 14-lane tunnel would be built to replace an existing section of the M25, passing under the runway. The taxpayer would contribute £1.2bn towards improved transport links.” 13.5.2014 Guardian
Appraisal Framework Module 4. Surface Access: Heathrow Airport North West Runway
5.9 Road Scheme costs
5.9.1 Out-turn costs of recent road widening schemes on the M25 were used as a basis for estimating the total cost associated with providing the capacity enhancements summarised above. These total estimates include pure engineering costs, land costs, environmental mitigation costs and the consequential costs of the schemes themselves.
5.9.2 It has been reported that the recently-constructed M25 junctions 16-23 (M40-A1 (M)) widening programme cost £3.4bn for the 35km stretch. The Government’s Public Accounts Committee have been critical of these costs and have suggested that improved management could have resulted in a total spend of £2.4bn. Furthermore, the total costs included construction and 30 years-worth of maintenance. Assuming that the maintenance costs accounted for 20% of the total suggests a newbuild efficient cost of £1.92bn, equivalent to £55m/km.
5.9.3 It has also been reported that the recently-constructed M25 junctions 27-30 (M11-A13) widening programme through rural Essex cost £360m for the 27km stretch. This equates to a total spend per km of £13m.
5.9.4 Taking a weighted average of these costs per km (most of the widening due to the new North West Runway at Heathrow will be more similar to the junctions 16-23 programme than the junctions 27-30 programme), we have assumed that the Heathrow road widening costs will vary between £35m-£50m/km. A similar approach and a value of £50m per km was adopted during the Phase 1 analysis.
5.9.5 Table 16 overleaf summarises the estimated costs for the Extended Baseline with SRA surface access proposal for Heathrow.
5.9.6 Taking the unit road widening costs described above, we estimate that the strategic highway cost of the new North West Runway at Heathrow in the optimal surface access proposal will vary between £0.94bn and £2.23bn. This variation is due to two reasons as follows:
The variation of the length of road to be widened depending on whether the criteria to widen is 100% capacity or 85% capacity; and
The variation in unit widening costs.
5.9.7 These costs exclude risk and optimism bias. With an optimism bias of 44%, the Extended Baseline road surface package costs range from £1.35bn to £3.22bn.
5.9.8 Asset replacement and operational expenditure (OPEX) were not considered during this study, but analysis of these costs was undertaken in a different worksteam and are detailed in a separate report, entitled ‘Deliverable 13.2: Cost calculations’.
“For the purposes of this analysis, the full costs of the M25 tunnelling works have been categorised as surface access improvements, rather than “scheme capital expenditure” works which ordinarily include engineering projects within the boundary. We note that the airport operator has suggested funding 50% of these works, with the remaining 50% borne by the public sector. The Airports Commission has not taken a view as tot he split of funding between private and public sources and believes that this would be a matter for negotiation should the scheme be taken forward.”
P 48. Section H2 of
Appraisal Framework Module 13. Cost and Commercial Viability: Cost and Revenue Identification Heathrow Airport North West Runway.
Ten years ago, more than 130 Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) supporters took part in a mass tree planting to create the SSE Wood at Broxted Hill Farm, on the very site where BAA was planning to put down a 2nd runway. This wood was planted as a symbol of SSE’s defiant determination that BAA’s runway would never be built. The trees, all native species, were sponsored by some 700 supporters. On Sunday, 30 November 2014, to mark the tenth anniversary of the wood, SSE held another working party and also planted a tenth anniversary tree. Peter Sanders, SSE’s Chairman, said: “At the time when it was first planted the Government of the day was predicting that a 2nd runway would be operational at Stansted by 2010. It is wonderful to see how the wood has flourished, and how the plans for a 2nd runway have so far been thwarted.” Terry Waite commented: “We stand firmly against ruthless commercial exploitation which fails to take into account the wishes of local people and spoils a part of the countryside forever.”
Stop Stansted Expansion celebrates 10th anniversary of its wood at Broxted
Exactly ten years ago, more than 130 Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) supporters took part in a mass tree planting to create the SSE Wood at Broxted Hill Farm, on the very site where BAA was planning to extend Stansted Airport by laying down a second runway. This wood was planted as a symbol of SSE’s defiant determination that BAA’s runway would never be built.
SSE Wood on 6 October 2014
The trees, all native species, were sponsored by some 700 supporters and were selected with the advice and help of the Woodland Trust. Terry Waite had planted the inaugural oak a few months before. In 2009 a commemorative oak was planted in memory of Norman Mead, SSE’s first Chairman – again Terry Waite did the digging – and from time to time working parties have been held to keep the wood healthy and tidy.
On Sunday, 30 November 2014, to mark the tenth anniversary of the wood, SSE held another working party and also planted a tenth anniversary tree. Terry Waite was unable to come, but sent the following message:
“I am so sorry that I am unable to be with you all. Having just seen the pictures ‘before and after’ I am both amazed and delighted to see what a transformation has taken place. No one in the Stop Stansted Expansion Campaign is against sensible development but we are keen to ensure that development is sensible and that as far as possible our heritage is maintained and properly developed. We stand firmly against ruthless commercial exploitation which fails to take into account the wishes of local people and spoils a part of the countryside forever. A big ‘thank you’ to all who have campaigned long and hard and continue so to do. Well done.”
Peter Sanders, SSE’s Chairman, said: “The SSE wood has been a great success. At the time when it was first planted the Government of the day was predicting that a second runway would be operative at Stansted by 2010. It is wonderful to see how the wood has flourished, and how the plans for a second runway have so far been thwarted. We are firmly convinced that our local community, like our wood, will not be uprooted, but will continue to grow and gather strength over the years.”
Horley Town Council commissioned a survey, of over 1,000 people, and has formally opposed a 2nd Gatwick runway. Horley Town Council is required to give an official response to the Airports Commission on the runway plans, and conducted the study to help shape their view. Of the 1,096 respondents, 34% were in favour of a new runway, while 56% were against, and 10% were not sure. The most common reason residents gave against expansion was increased noise, and the next more common reason was concerns about traffic and road congestion. Reasons for the runway to be approved include “enhanced local prosperity, especially for Horley”, followed by “new jobs created, plus job security”. The 10% who were unsure wanted more details about roads, traffic and parking impact. Despite councillors’ pleas for more people between the ages of 15-25 to take part in the Horley survey, only 15 respondents did so. A full council meeting agreed to oppose a runway. But if a Gatwick runway was got Commission approval, the council would strive to get “the best possible outcome for local residents with particular regard to infrastructure”.
Survey finds Horley residents are against Gatwick’s potential second runway
November 23, 2014 (Surrey Mirror)
By Joshua Searle
THE majority of Horley residents are against expansion at Gatwick, according to a new survey.
Following the findings, Horley Town Council – which commissioned the survey – has formally opposed any proposed expansion at the airport.
The survey quizzed more than 1,000 people on their views.
Proposals for expansion at Gatwick are currently being considered by Sir Howard Davies’ Airport Commission, as one option to maximise airport capacity in the South East.
Horley Town Council is required to give an official response to the plans and conducted the study to help shape a view.
Out of the 1,096 respondents, 368 (34 per cent) were in favour of a second runway, while 615 (56 per cent) were against, and 113 (10 per cent) were not sure.
The most common reason residents gave against expansion was “Gatwick second runway will increase noise levels”, followed by concerns over traffic and road congestion.
One respondent said: “Noise pollution has already increased since flight paths were changed last year.
“[A new runway] will increase [it] even further, given that there will be more flights (including more helicopters and night flights), traffic and ground noise.”
Reasons for the runway to be approved include “enhanced local prosperity, especially for Horley”, followed by “new jobs created, plus job security”.
One comment, included in data released by the council, said: “RW2 [Gatwick’s proposed second runway] is the key to Horley’s future economic vitality.”
The ten percent of respondents who claimed to be unsure about the expansion asked for more details about roads, traffic and parking impact.
Horley Town Council vice chairman Councillor Mike George told the Mirror: “The survey was a useful exercise and the first time we have done it on this scale to my memory.
“It was not a clear majority one way or another, you wouldn’t say it was overwhelming. The for [side] put forward some good comments and so did the against.
“There are strong arguments on both sides and I think going forward we have to respect that. If nothing else we have now heard the arguments.”
Cllr George also noted that the respondents who said they were unsure would be useful in the future to help show Gatwick bosses what concerns the public have. Despite councillors’ pleas in this newspaper for more people between the ages of 15-25 to contribute, the council only received 15 respondents in this category.
After receiving the report, councillors agreed at a full council meeting last Tuesday to endorse the majority view of residents who are against expansion, but noted that should the Davies Commission select Gatwick then the council would “strive to achieve the best possible outcome for local residents with particular regard to infrastructure”.
“Back Heathrow” is an industry funded pressure group, the aim of which is to drum up support for a 3rd Heathrow runway. It was set up with at least £100,000 from Heathrow airport – maybe more. Its website just says that it had money from Heathrow to set up. Matt Gorman from Heathrow admitted at a public meeting in Putney on 27th November than Heathrow continues to fund it, but nobody will give any figures. “Back Heathrow” is a classic astroturfing campaign (ie. making out that it is community led, when it is not). Its co-ordinator is Rob Gray, was previously a director of the Aviation Foundation, another lobbying group established by the industry. Other staff working for Back Heathrow are current or former Heathrow employees. They have recently distributed hundreds of thousands of glossy newspapers to households across west London, with no mention anywhere on these that they are paid for (at least in part) by Heathrow. They try to give the impression of being independent information. Back Heathrow claim to have 50,000 people signed up, but this is largely due to scare tactics, implying Heathrow workers will lose their jobs without a 3rd runway. This has now been revealed by the Sunday Times
…………….. Designed like a tabloid newspaper, the leaflets include stark warnings that “114,000 jobs are at risk if Heathrow shuts down”. Three of the four newsletters delivered during the past year fail to disclose that Back Heathrow is funded by the airport.
….. “This is straight out of Big Tobacco and anti-climate-change-type strategies where you simply scaremonger through an ‘astroturf’ group that you set up and fund at arm’s length,” said Jeff Gazzard, a spokesman for the Aviation Environment Federation (AEF).
………… The most recent newsletter, which was delivered to up to 750,000 homes, claimed more than 50,000 residents were supporting Back Heathrow’s campaign……….. [Rob Gray] set up Back Heathrow as a limited company in July 2013 with Nathan Fletcher, a senior PR officer at the airport. Fletcher, who is now Heathrow’s head of news, resigned as a director in April.
Michael Appleton, Back Heathrow’s communications manager, is a former communications officer at the airport.
……………..the group had also received a donation from Heathrow Hub, a group that has submitted a rival plan to expand the airport, as well as smaller donations from residents and businesses.
……………. Asked by The Sunday Times after the [Putney] meeting how much funding the airport had provided, [Matt Gorman] replied: “I don’t know exactly.” He then refused to answer further questions.
“Local people are supporting growth at Heathrow in their thousands.
“Already 50,000 people who live near the UK’s only hub airport have signed up to Back Heathrow, one of the country’s fastest-growing campaigns.
Back Heathrow wants to safeguard local jobs and secure a bright future for Heathrow, a major community asset. This means campaigning for the airport to grow, and standing against those who would let it suffer long-term decline or worse.
Thousands of local residents are speaking up for our local area by taking this golden opportunity to grow and prosper alongside a successful Heathrow.”
But the reality is, there is absolutely NO prospect of Heathrow closing. Or of losing any jobs (except through the staff cuts the airport and the airlines etc make, in order to make cost savings).
This has been a scare tactic using by Back Heathrow, from the start, to try to gain support. And to try to frighten people who work at Heathrow into believing their jobs could be at risk.
From Zac Goldsmith’s blog:
The “Back Heathrow” survey
An organisation called ‘Back Heathrow’, which portrays itself as a ‘community group’ but which is heavily funded by Heathrow Ltd, has just sent out a new survey to residents. See: LINK
I have been asked if I think it is worth responding to the survey, and having discussed the issue with the Richmond Heathrow Campaign, and HACAN, I feel very strongly that it is not.
The reason, simply, is that it is extraordinarily disingenuous. The questions are crafted in such a way as to make it impossible for residents to express what I know from our referendum and countless opinion polls to be the majority view among people living in Heathrow’s shadow.
In addition, the choice it presents is a bogus one – between expanding Heathrow and closing it.
A few weeks ago, the new CEO of Heathrow admitted in Parliament that it was not true to suggest Heathrow would decline if it is denied an extra runway. The fact that his company is pouring vast sums of money into an outfit that continues to say the opposite is a poor reflection on Heathrow and a disservice to residents.
Despite the scaremongering by Back Heathrow, the real choice is not between closing down Heathrow and expanding it. The choice is between pouring taxpayer’s money into creating a vast foreign-owned monopoly on one edge of our great city – or investing in a network and enabling London’s main airports to compete properly.
This shocking Heathrow survey is part of a crude propaganda exercise, and I have no intention of contributing to it. I have instead placed it in my recycling bin and hope others do the same.
“Back Heathrow” campaign formed, by the airport, to demonstrate – and boost – local support for a 3rd runway
September 12, 2013
“Back Heathrow” is a lobby group that has recently been formed, by supporters of a third Heathrow runway. Its aim is to get people who favour Heathrow expansion to declare their support, and “give a voice to the hundreds of thousands of residents who support Heathrow.” It has been set up with funding from the airport, and 400,000 local tabloid-style propaganda newspapers have been delivered to local communities surrounding the airport. The text of the paper is shown below. It pushes the scaremongering idea that there is a risk of Heathrow shutting down, causing the loss of “114,000 jobs” and that “200 of the UK’s biggest companies may move from Heathrow.” In reality, there is little prospect of Heathrow closing – and this is just a tactic to get publicity and worry people. Back Heathrow have written to local councillors, giving them the misleading impressing that it is a “new community campaign”. It isn’t. It is organised by the industry, not by the community. Hacan said the formation of “Back Heathrow” was “the actions of a desperate organisation, not confident of the arguments it is making.”
Writing in the local Sussex press, a local resident shows up the logical inconsistency of local LibDem councillor Frances Haigh backing a 2nd Gatwick runway (against the policy of her party) while backing more cycling and more use of rail. With around 35 million passengers per year, Gatwick already provides far more capacity than everyone living within a reasonable distance of the airport could possibly need per year. The extra passengers with a new runway would need to come by road or rail from long distances away, possibly passing other airports which have spare capacity, like Stansted and Luton. To travel more by bike and by rail is commendable, but the carbon emissions from flying far outweigh the savings than can be made by these more sustainable modes. The travel distances flying permits, in just a few hours, can result in the production of more CO2 per person per day than the average per car in a year. For anyone concerned about their contribution to global warming, cutting back on air travel is an obvious and essential choice.
LETTER: Cutting air travel is essential choice
29 November 2014 (West Sussex County Times – WSCT)
Cllr Haigh’s (LibDem councillor, leader of the LibDem group on Horsham DistrictCouncil) comments (WSCT 20.11.2014) about improving cycle and rail infrastructure are spot on but her analysis of the benefits of air transport is over simplistic and misleading.
Cllr Haigh recently voiced her support for a second runway at Gatwick – involving 40,000 more supporting jobs than we have local people to fill; 120,000 more people than we have places for them to live; more than twice as many aircraft flights than we need; more than twice as much noise and air pollution than we want; and so on.
According to www.gatwickairport.com, ‘Gatwick serves around 200 destinations [more than Heathrow and any other UK airport] in 90 countries for 34 million passengers a year on short and long haul point-to-point services’.
That is more than enough for everyone, for miles around Gatwick, to fly many times each year. If the number of flights is more than doubled then the obvious conclusion is that the extra flights would be filled by people travelling by road and rail from even further away – generating more noise, air pollution and traffic congestion on their way to Gatwick.
The irony would be that, to reach Gatwick, many of those passengers would travel away from, sometimes past, nearer regional airports – like Stansted and Luton (which are running considerably below capacity).
Expanding Gatwick (which is itself running below capacity) is unnecessary and would be detrimental to the national economy, make worse the North-South (and East-West) divide; would be detrimental to the global environment and very detrimental to our local environment.
Cllr Haigh justifies her presumption that we should fly more often and drive less often by quoting some statistics – ‘greenhouse gas emissions for Europe… transport is 25%… of this 17.9% is due to road transport and 3.1% to aviation… Carbon emissions [of] a large petrol driven car with one occupant is worse… per kilometre than a short haul flight’. However, those statistics are only a part of a complex picture.
For example, the total global warming impact of each flight is thought to be more than twice the carbon emissions (research ‘aviation multiplier’). Also, the standard way to account for emissions for an international flight is to allocate half to the country of departure and half to the country of arrival. ** [No – see below].
However, European residents take up two-thirds of the seats on the average plane landing at or taking off from a European airport. The official statistics are effectively offloading the emissions of Europeans onto the countries travellers are visiting.
Aircraft will continue to rely on inefficient and polluting combustion engines for the foreseeable future. On the other hand road and rail vehicles are already achieving considerable improvements through the use of hybrid, electric and, soon, hydrogen propulsion.
The distances flying permits can result in the production of more CO2 per person per day than the average by car in a year.
Between 1990 and 2004, despite improvements in aircraft fuel efficiencies and a reduction in business travel, the total UK CO2 emissions from aircraft doubled. Unless this growth is stopped, flying will soon add more emissions than all the cuts we make elsewhere.
The majority of people who are causing this harmful and environmentally damaging pollution are financially well off. The people who are most vulnerable are the poorest inhabitants of the poorest nations, the great majority of whom will never afford to fly.
Cllr Haigh asked: ‘What would we change to protect our planet?’
For anyone concerned about their contribution to global warming, cutting back on air travel is an obvious and essential choice.
** [No – in the UK the DfT calculates UK aviation carbon emissions from departing planes. See link. There is the assumption that as many planes go one way, as then come back the other, so balancing it out. ICAO is currently trying to work out how best to allocate carbon in future – perhaps by departures, perhaps shared … see link ].
Stansted’s draft “Sustainable Development Plan” says it hopes to increase Stansted’s passengers from the current 18 million, up to their legal limit of 35 million, and then up to 40 – 45 million per year, on the existing runway. Stansted Parish Council has now commented, unflatteringly, about the plan. They fear growth will inevitably be to the detriment of their villagers and said: “MAG claim their plan to develop Stansted Airport is sustainable and, seen from their narrow perspective, that may well be the case. However, viewed from the broader standpoint of the local community, it most certainly is not. … All [the extra 25 – 30 million passengers per year] will be competing with local communities for use of the same finite infrastructure resources; for example, road, rail, water etc. Without substantial investment, these resources will begin to degrade and ultimately fail. …… it is clear that [MAG] do not consider they have any responsibility for maintaining or investing in such resources.” And “As far as [MAG] are concerned these are matters for local and national government and it is for the taxpayer to pick up the bill. ” The parish wants a tax on airport operators to pay for the infrastructure, on which they depend.
Stansted Parish Council’s land grab concerns over airport’s development plan
November 27, 2014 ( HertsAndEssexObserver )
By Sinead Holland
STANSTED Parish Council has poured scorn on airport bosses’ plans for sustainable expansion.
The council was responding to the draft Sustainable Development Plan issued by Manchester Airports Group (MAG), [on 2nd September – the consultation period ended on 7th November] which details the need for new routes and increased frequencies to drive growth and enable doubling of passenger numbers to 40-45 million a year on the single runway. [Draft Sustainable Development Plan summary here] .
Bosses say it is achievable within agreed noise and air quality limits and the airport’s existing boundary, and could create an extra 10,000 on-site jobs and generate £4.6bn in additional economic benefit.
They want Stansted to be a “key enabler of growth in the London-Stansted-Cambridge corridor and east London” – but the parish council fears any wider benefit will be to the detriment of villagers.
Members prefaced their response by asserting they were not “anti-airport” and recognising that it is here to stay, will continue to grow and is inextricably linked with the livelihoods of many local people.
However, they said: “MAG claim their plan to develop Stansted Airport is sustainable and, seen from their narrow perspective, that may well be the case. However, viewed from the broader standpoint of the local community, it most certainly is not. MAG want to bring to the area an additional 25-30 million passengers each year. All of these people will be competing with local communities for use of the same finite infrastructure resources; for example, road, rail, water etc. Without substantial investment, these resources will begin to degrade and ultimately fail.
“Having studied the proposals in this document and after discussing them with MAG’s management, it is clear that they do not consider they have any responsibility for maintaining or investing in such resources.
“As far as they are concerned these are matters for local and national government and it is for the taxpayer to pick up the bill. “This is a very one-sided and unbalanced view of the relationship between Stansted Airport and both the local community and local economy within which it sits.
“In the long term, this approach is plainly not sustainable, and the Airports Commission should consider including in its recommendations to the Government in 2015 the introduction of a tax on airport operators to fund the necessary investment in the infrastructure on which their operations depend.”
The parish council’s response raises concerns about noise, parking, jobs and regeneration, and highlights a key concern for the village – development plans for the north side of the airport.
“A site of 18 hectares [44.5 acres] has apparently been earmarked for non-aviation-related commercial activities, which, if approved, would represent a complete U-turn in the current planning policy strictly forbidding such development.
“This constraint is there for a good reason. It is only a few years since the then airport owners, BAA, sought to annex huge tracts of the surrounding countryside under compulsory purchase orders, destroying a number of communities in the process, in order effectively to create a land bank for their expansion plans.
“The concern must be that if land is now released for non-aviation-related purposes, at some point in the future this will lead to additional land take under compulsory purchase orders as the airport seeks once again to expand.”
Stansted publishes consultation on draft plan for future development, staying a one runway airport
September 2, 2014
Stansted Airport has published its draft Sustainable Development Plan (SDP), for consultation until 7th November. The plan sets out the airport’s ambition to grow (it is always thus in this industry – perpetual growth….) But at least the airport is not planning on a second runway. It anticipates getting up to 45 million passengers per year on one runway, while it had about 17.8 million passengers in 2013, and has planning permission for up to 35 million. The timing of the consultation is apt, being the same day as the Airports Commission rejected an estuary airport. Stansted says its “important role has already been recognised by the Airports Commission, and the plan will help inform its final recommendations to Government on the vital contribution that Stansted’s existing capacity will make to meeting demand over the next 10-15 years.” Local group, SSE (Stop Stansted Expansion) commented on the SDP that they welcomed the plan being only for a single runway airport; they want a gradual phasing out of night flights; and they want the approximately 270 properties near the airport, bought by BAA, to be returned to private ownership.
SSE welcome Stansted’s Development Plan consultation as an opportunity for an open debate on its one-runway future
July 30, 2014
Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) is calling for an open debate about Stansted Airport’s long term plan, due to be published later this week. Manchester Airport Group (‘MAG’), which bought Stansted from BAA 18 months ago, will publish its ‘Sustainable Development Plan’ (SDP) for Stansted, setting out what it intends to do with the airport over the next 20-25 years. The SDP will initially be published as a draft for consultation, with a final version of the plan expected towards the end of the year. SSE welcomes this initiative by MAG and wants to encourage maximum public participation in the consultation process. It is understood that the SDP will be based on Stansted remaining as a single runway airport. This will be a great relief for the vast majority of local residents but it still leaves scope – within Stansted’s existing planning permission – for the airport to handle almost twice as many passengers and twice as many flights as it does today. (Up to 35 million passengers and 264,000 flights). SSE wants to see a gradual phasing out of night flights at Stansted and the return of some 270 homes bought near the airport, for a 2nd runway, to private ownership.
STANSTED AIRPORT BOSSES OUTLINE VISION FOR
45M PASSENGERS A YEAR ON A SINGLE RUNWAYSinead Holland – Herts & Essex Observer – 2 September 2014
STANSTED Airport bosses have set out their vision for expansion to up to 45m passengers a year – as plans for an island airport in the Thames Estuary finally sank.
Sir Howard Davies, the chairman of the Airports Commission, has confirmed that cost, logistics and environmental issues made the plan unviable. The scheme was the brainchild of Mayor of London, Boris Johnson and had the backing of Uttlesford’s MP Sir Alan Haselhurst. In an announcement on Stansted’s future today (Tuesday, September 2) Manchester Airports Group (MAG) made it clear the Uttlesford hub can go a long way to solve the country’s aviation capacity crisis. It currently handles around 18m passengers every year.
The new draft Sustainable Development Plan highlights: * New routes and increased frequencies to drive growth and enable doubling of passenger numbers to 40m to 45m per year on single runway; * Growth achievable within agreed noise and air quality limits and existing boundary; * Existing capacity has the potential to support an extra 10,000 on-site jobs and generate £4.6bn in additional economic benefit; * Key enabler of growth in the London-Stansted-Cambridge corridor and east London.
Stansted’s important role has already been recognised by the Airports Commission, and the plan will help inform its final recommendations to Government on the contribution that its existing 35m passengers per annum planning permission will make to meeting demand over the next 10 to 15 years.
The plan, now open for consultation, establishes a framework for responsible and sustainable growth at Stansted, and demonstrates the airport’s ability to grow to handle 40 to 45m passengers a year within agreed environmental limits and without the need for additional airport land. Making use of existing capacity will generate an extra 10,000 on-site jobs and £4.6 billion in additional economic activity, and act as a “key enabler for economic development in the thriving London-Stansted-Cambridge corridor and east London”.
The airport will be holding a series of public exhibitions in local towns and villages during September and October. Those with an interest in the airport’s future are being encouraged to visit an exhibition to hear more about the plans and give their views.
………….. and it continues …………
Stop Stansted Expansion comment:
“Those living round the airport will be relieved at the decision to remain a one runway airport. However, the effects of the expansion of traffic from 18mppa to 45mppa (well over the permitted 35mppa) plus additional cargo planes needs more detailed analysis before it can be claimed to be “sustainable” or practicable.”
The Airports Commission consultation document is aware that air quality is a major obstacle for a new Heathrow runway. It says expanding either Gatwick or Heathrow would have a negative impact on air quality, with all proposed schemes requiring expansions to local road networks to accommodate increased road traffic. For both the Heathrow runway options the Commission says “Both local Air Quality Objectives and EU limit thresholds are at risk of exceedance at a small number of monitoring sites in the local area under this scheme. While in some cases these exceedances are also forecast to occur in the do minimum scenario, there is clearly a substantial negative impact of the scheme on air quality, unless forceful mitigation measures are implemented.” But they have not been able to complete full detailed modelling of the air quality impacts of new runways and further work is needed. This unfortunately is not in time for the consultation. The Commission intends to supplement this at a future date with “more detailed dispersion modelling”. That means models to show how wind and weather disperses pollution, and it could be questioned how much faith should be placed on sufficient wind speeds in coming years.
Air quality impacts of UK airport expansion assessed
November 14, 2014 (Air Quality News)
The Airports Commission states that expanding either Gatwick or Heathrow would have a negative air quality impact, but plans more detailed modelling.
The independent Airports Commission has launched a consultation on options for a new runway at either Heathrow or Gatwick, alongside a report which assesses the possible air quality impacts of each scheme.
And, while the Commission has not yet made any specific recommendations, it states that expanding either Gatwick or Heathrow would in either case have a negative impact on air quality, with all proposed schemes requiring expansions to local road networks to accommodate increased road traffic.
Two of the proposed schemes would see an expansion of Heathrow Airport
However, while the Commission believes the air quality modelling information it has so far provided gives a “sufficient evidential basis for consultees to express their views”, it has yet to complete its full detailed modelling of the air quality impacts of airport expansion.
Launched this week (November 11), the consultation will run for 12 weeks and closes on February 3 2015. It concerns three options for a new runway in the South East of England: a second runway at Gatwick; a North West runway at Heathrow; and the extension of the Heathrow Northern runway.
The Commission forecasts a third runway at Heathrow would cost £18.6 billion, extending the northern runway would cost £13.5bn, and a second Gatwick runway would cost £9.3bn (£7.4bn).
Chair of the Airports Commission, Sir Howard Davies, said that it had “not yet taken a view on which proposal strikes the most effective balance between the assessment criteria” but that the consultation provided an opportunity for the evidence to be “examined, challenged and improved”.
Commenting on the consultation launch, Sir Howard said: “Responses to this consultation will be a valuable addition to our evidence base and will directly inform our recommendation to the government when we publish our final report in the summer of 2015.”
According to the Airports Commission, both local air quality objectives and EU limits thresholds “are at risk of exceedance at a small number of monitoring sites in the local area” under the two schemes proposed for Heathrow.
The report adds that for both schemes “there is clearly a substantial negative impact of the scheme on air quality, unless forceful mitigation measures are implemented”.
King’s College London annual nitrogen dioxide monitoring data for 2010 shows that levels of the pollutant breached annual limits of 40 microgrammes per cubic metre in and around Heathrow, which scientists at the university have said is largely due to road traffic.
Furthermore, aKing’s College mapdepicting air pollution levels in Greater London shows that Heathrow has the highest levels of nitrogen dioxide outside the centre of the capital.
According to the Airport Commission’s report published this week: “significant works are needed on the roads around the airport site to accommodate its expanded footprint including putting the M25 into a tunnel.”
The report states that the management of congestion on the M25 and the M4 near Heathrow “will be a significant issue and infrastructure (including widening), demand management or a combination of both may be required”.
However, it adds that “the majority of these strategic road works would be needed even without any expansion, given baseline expectations about increase in demand”.
In addition, the report also suggests that some additional widening of the M4 may be needed as a result of expansion, but that “it may be possible to avoid of reduce this through mitigation measures”.
The Mayor of London is opposed to Heathrow airport expansion and has previously highlighted the impacts on air quality of such a scheme, as has Friends of the Earth London campaigner Jenny Bates, who said this week that expanding Heathrow “would bring more noise and pollution to local communities”.
Adding a second runway at Gatwick airport would require land take in the Langley Green, Pound Hill North and Northgate wards of Crawley, plus the Rusper and Colgate ward within the district of Horsham.
Expansion of the airport at Gatwick would, according to the report, have a “negative impact on a range of other local environmental factors, including air quality” and adds that “impacts in some cases will never be entirely mitigated”.
However, the report states that with regards to air quality “further work is required to fully quantify the limited risks”.
Regarding the impacts on road traffic around Gatwick, the report states: “Planned and anticipated (though uncommitted) investment on the M23 and M25 is also forecast to provide sufficient capacity to accommodate growth in road traffic from the expanded airport. A range of investments in the local road network would be needed to enable the delivery of the second runway and associated infrastructure.”
While “high-level air quality modelling” enabling a “comparison of the scale of impacts and risks” associated with each option has been presented for consultation, the Commission intends to supplement this at a future date with “more detailed dispersion modelling”.
According to the Commission’s report this week, the dispersion modelling “will provide greater assurance in respect of the air quality implications of each proposal and the scope for mitigation”
But, the Commission said that the “range of inputs required and the complexity of this work mean that it has not been possible to carry it out in advance of consultation”.
The report adds: “It is acknowledged it would have been preferable to have available the outcome of more detailed modelling exercises prior to consultation. On balance, however, the Commission considers that it is better to launch the consultation phase of its work at the present time (enabling sufficient time for participation in the process and for consideration of the outcome of those responses), than to hold off the consultation process in an attempt to achieve a firmer foundation for its air quality assessments.”
Mentions of air quality in the main consultation document are copied below:
The Commission consultation document says one of its Phase 2 objectives is: “To improve air quality consistent with EU standards and local planning
policy requirements.”It states (2.55):
” For its air quality assessments the Commission has used the
forecasts to predict the mass emissions of harmful compounds associated with
airport expansion, and has then considered the impacts of these emissions at a
national and local level. It has carried out a high-level assessment of local impacts
and the risks of exceeding legislated air quality limits, as well as considering the
scope for mitigation. “(2.56):
“The high-level air quality modelling presented for consultation enables a comparison
to be made of the scale of impacts and risks associated with each option. Prior to
reaching any final recommendations, the Commission intends to supplement this with
more detailed dispersion modelling, as set out in its Appraisal Framework, which will
provide greater assurance in respect of the air quality implications of each proposal and
the scope for mitigation. The range of inputs required and the complexity of this work
mean that it has not been possible to carry it out in advance of consultation”
“It is acknowledged it would have been preferable to have available the outcome of
more detailed modelling exercises prior to consultation. On balance, however, the
Commission considers that it is better to launch the consultation phase of its work
at the present time (enabling sufficient time for participation in the process and for
consideration of the outcome of those responses), than to hold off the consultation
process in an attempt to achieve a firmer foundation for its air quality assessments.
Although a fuller picture may be provided by more detailed work, the high level
modelling undertaken to date identifies the key challenges which shortlisted
schemes face and provides a sufficient evidential basis for consultees to express
their views on the questions asked in the consultation document. The Commission
is continuing to work in this area and it is anticipated that fuller work will inform its
(3.35 – about Gatwick):
“Expansion would have a negative impact on a range of other local environmental
factors, including air quality, landscape, heritage, biodiversity and water. In general
while good detailed design and operational delivery by the airport operator could
significantly reduce the impact of the scheme, the impacts in some cases will never
be entirely mitigated. However, the mitigated impacts are not predicted to exceed
domestic or international regulations, except in the case of air quality where further
work is required to fully quantify the limited risks. ”
(3.87 – Heathrow Hub):
“Both local Air Quality Objectives and EU limit thresholds are at risk of exceedance
at a small number of monitoring sites in the local area under this scheme. While
in some cases these exceedances are also forecast to occur in the do minimum
scenario, there is clearly a substantial negative impact of the scheme on air quality,
unless forceful mitigation measures are implemented. As explained at paragraph
2.56-7 above, further work on this issue is ongoing.”
Identical paragraph as above
(3.139 – Heathrow new North West runway):
“Both local Air Quality Objectives and EU limit thresholds are at risk of exceedance
at a small number of monitoring sites in the local area under this scheme. While
in some cases these exceedances are also forecast to occur in the do minimum
scenario, there is clearly a substantial negative impact of the scheme on air quality,
unless forceful mitigation measures are implemented. As explained at paragraph
2.56-7 above, further work on this issue is ongoing. ”
“Impact of mitigations on noise and air quality impacts: Heathrow Airport
Ltd has proposed a range of measures, such as operational mitigations or
financial incentives, to mitigate adverse noise and air quality impacts. Not all of
these mitigations have informed the Commission’s quantitative assessments,
but the Commission has considered these potential mitigations when evaluating
“Heathrow Airport Ltd’s updated scheme design modelled
a phased release of the new capacity provided by its scheme. This phased
release has the effect of tempering the environmental (particularly air quality and
noise) impacts of expansion, which may be necessary if the airport and environs
have to adhere to environmental impact limits”
The report, by Jacobs, on Air Quality: Baseline is described as:
“Report on the expected developments in air quality over a 60 year period in the vicinity of Heathrow and Gatwick, considering airport operations, airport surface access and background users of surface access networks, on the basis of a “do minimum” scenario with no airport expansion.”
The report, by Jacobs, on Air Quality: National and Local Assessment is described as:
“Jacobs Report on the implications of schemes for both air quality in the vicinity of Heathrow and Gatwick airports and for national air quality levels, appraised across a 60 year period.”
Atmospheric dispersion modeling
Atmospheric dispersion modeling is the mathematical simulation of how air pollutants disperse in the ambient atmosphere. It is performed with computer programs that solve the mathematical equations and algorithms which simulate the pollutant dispersion. The dispersion models are used to estimate or to predict the downwind concentration of air pollutants or toxins emitted from sources such as industrial plants, vehicular traffic or accidental chemical releases.Such models are important to governmental agencies tasked with protecting and managing the ambient air quality. The models are typically employed to determine whether existing or proposed new industrial facilities are or will be in compliance with the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) in the United States and other nations. The models also serve to assist in the design of effective control strategies to reduce emissions of harmful air pollutants. Atmospheric dispersion models are also known as atmospheric diffusion models, air dispersion models, air quality models, and air pollution dispersion models.
Numerical Atmospheric-dispersion Modelling Environment (NAME) is a local to global scale model developed by the UK’s Met Office. It is used for: forecasting of air quality, air pollution dispersion, and acid rain; tracking radioactive emissions and volcanic ash discharges; analysis of accidental air pollutant releases and assisting in emergency response; and long-term environmental impact analysis. It is an integrated model that includes boundary layer dispersion modelling.
Kings College did some research on air quality around Heathrow while there were no flights for many days, due to the eruption of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano in April 2010. Study here.
Air pollution has always been the insurmountable problem Heathrow expansion has faced. By delaying pollution modelling exercises until now, it is clear that the Davies Commission is trying its best to justify the unsustainable expansion of Heathrow. The ridiculous concept that dispersion through variable weather patterns (that are changing due to climate change) can be defined is as fanciful as the concept that Heathrow can be expanded without significant environmental costs. The headline development costs are misleading. The only part of development costs that should be considered by Davies are those involving public expenditure and not those of the private companies (overseas owners) who own the airports.