Shadow Transport Secretary, Andy McDonald MP, and Shadow Aviation Minister, Karl Turner MP, visited Stansted, to see how the airport is planning to make best use of its existing runway capacity and improve the UK’s global connectivity over the next decade. The airport wants shorter journey times and better reliability on rail services between London Liverpool Street and Stansted, to get in more passengers – to make use of its huge amount of spare capacity. The two shadow ministers were told about Stansted’s new employment plans through its MAG Connect initiative, to help areas of high unemployment. Stansted management have high hopes for making the airport more profitable. Its CEO said: “Stansted can make a huge contribution to improving the UK’s connectivity with the rest of the world over the next decade, this will be vital as the country prepares to leave the EU and at a time when airport capacity is at a premium.” Karl Turner said: “The national conversation on aviation centres on the issue of building a third runway at Heathrow but we face capacity challenges here and now. More needs to be done to support connectivity into and out of our other international gateway airports across the UK to unlock existing unused capacity, and develop the huge potential they have.”
Shadow Transport team visits Stansted Airport to hear about growth plans and transformation
16/11/2017 (Cambridge Network)
London Stansted yesterday welcomed the Shadow Transport Secretary, Andy McDonald MP, and Shadow Aviation Minister, Karl Turner MP, to see how the airport is planning to make best use of its existing runway capacity and improve the UK’s global connectivity over the next decade.
The Labour transport team was briefed on the strong case for cutting journey times and improving reliability on rail services between London Liverpool Street and Stansted Airport to help unlock the airport’s spare capacity.
They were also shown Stansted’s new employment plans through its MAG Connect initiative, designed to support the airport’s growth and create job opportunities in areas where there is higher unemployment. As part of this work Stansted runs job fairs on-airport, in Harlow and attends dozens of local job fairs in addition to launching a permanent presence in Tottenham Job Centre Plus.
Brad Miller, London Stansted’s Chief Operating Officer, speaking after the visit, said: “We were delighted the Shadow Transport team was able to join us at Stansted today and discuss our plans for growing passenger numbers, our £600 million investment programme to transform the airport and our ambitions for a more reliable and faster rail service.
“Stansted can make a huge contribution to improving the UK’s connectivity with the rest of the world over the next decade, this will be vital as the country prepares to leave the EU and at a time when airport capacity is at a premium.”
Shadow Transport Secretary, Andy McDonald MP, said:“Following the decision to leave the EU, supporting UK aviation has become more, not less critical if the UK is to remain a global, outward-looking trading nation. Improving surface access to and utilising capacity of airports like Stansted is an important part of delivering an aviation strategy that will support our economy.”
Shadow Aviation Minister, Karl Turner MP, said: “The national conversation on aviation centres on the issue of building a third runway at Heathrow but we face capacity challenges here and now. More needs to be done to support connectivity into and out of our other international gateway airports across the UK to unlock existing unused capacity, and develop the huge potential they have.”
London Stansted is London’s third-busiest airport, currently serving around 22 million passengers a year. The airport is ideally located in between the global tech and life science hubs of London and Cambridge.
The Telegraph reports that the government has said it welcomes competition in the construction of the nation’s airports. Hotel owner Surinder Arora had earlier this year proposed a cheaper way to build a Heathrow 3rd runway, cutting about £5 billion off the price. Government documents related to the expansion had previously assumed Heathrow would be in charge of the construction project and choose which contractors it wanted to help it fulfil the scheme. But the DfT says in the revised consultation on its Airports NPS (National Policy Statement) that it would welcome competing bids for the work. The NPS consultation says: “For the avoidance of doubt, the Airports NPS does not identify any statutory undertaker as the appropriate person or appropriate persons to carry out the preferred scheme.” And there could be “more than one application for development consent, dealing with different components individually”. The Telegraph believes a key difference, if a body other than Heathrow did the building, would be that the party behind the construction would receive the associated income it generates from passenger and airline charges, as well as retail rental payments. But there could be more risks, more costs etc.
Rival Heathrow expansion consortium upbeat as Government opens door to competition
By Bradley Gerrard (Telegraph)
19 NOVEMBER 2017
The Government looks to have given a rival bid to develop Heathrow’s third runway a lift after stating for the first time it welcomed competition in the construction of the nation’s airports.
A plan by the largest single land owner on the site marked for expansion, Surinder Arora, alongside partners US engineering firm Bechtel, was put forward earlier this year which claimed to be as much as £5bn cheaper than Heathrow’s £17.5bn initial estimate.
Government documents related to the expansion had previously assumed Heathrow would be in charge of the construction project and choose which contractors it wanted to help it fulfil the scheme.
But now the Department for Transport has said in its revised draft Airports National Policy Statement, a document which forms part of the process of airport expansion, that it would welcome competing bids for the work. (NPS consultation document – both quotes from page 7).
“For the avoidance of doubt, the Airports NPS does not identify any statutory undertaker as the appropriate person or appropriate persons to carry out the preferred scheme,” the NPS document says.
Regardless of who builds the expansion it will have to comply with the exact specifications of the scheme which was recommended by the Airports Commission in 2015 and subsequently backed by the Government.
But a key difference will be that the party behind the construction will receive the associated income it generates from the likes of passenger and airline charges as well as retail rental payments.
It is possible, the Government states in the NPS consultation paper, that there could be “more than one application for development consent, dealing with different components individually”.
Mr Arora, who believes the project can be delivered for £12.4bn, said he wanted to see the project through and was “not trying to make it difficult for everyone”.
“We are happy to work with anyone on the basis the project is as efficient, affordable and as competitive as possible,” he said.
Carlton Brown, chief financial officer at the Arora Group, added that if there was a “more value-enhancing way” to construct the expansion, Heathrow had an obligation as part of its licence from the Civil Aviation Authority to embrace this.
A Heathrow spokesman said it had worked hard with airlines to develop a plan which would keep airport charges close to current levels, “cutting billions of pounds from the early budget estimates whilst also improving passenger experience”.
“The NPS is clear that commitments made, particularly to local communities must be delivered,” the spokesman added.
“Only Heathrow Airport Ltd has committed to a world-class £2.6bn compensation package for local communities and a £10m route development fund for the regions and nations. No other plan, including the Arora plan, can deliver these commitments and give the country the hub airport it needs in a post Brexit world.”
The notion of parties other than the airports themselves constructing terminals or runways is more common in the USA but hasn’t developed in the UK.
But some countries in Europe are starting to adopt this method, with the Irish Government recently stating it would consider a third party provider to develop a third terminal rather than the Dublin Airport Authority.
The potential for competition to construct some or all of the expansion at Heathrow is also backed by the airport’s largest airline group, British Airways owner IAG.
“Heathrow is the most expensive airport in the world so we think the Government is wise to take a serious look at Arora’s proposal,” a spokesperson said. “It would significantly reduce the cost.
“Customer charges must not increase from today’s level if Heathrow is to have a viable future and compete effectively with European airports post Brexit. The Government must ensure it is customers that benefit from the new runway, not the airport’s shareholders.”
Some, however, question whether splitting the construction up would add cost and increase the risk of delay to a project many view as long overdue.
Airport hotel tycoon, Surinder Arora, wants Heathrow runway built soon – but a bit cheaper
A wealthy hotel tycoon, Surinder Arora, has submitted plans for a 3rd Heathrow. He has been a long time backer of a runway, and says his plan would be £5 billion cheaper than what Heathrow is offering (costing £17.5 billion). He has put his proposal to the government’s public consultation on Heathrow (the NPS consultation actually closed on 25th May.) Heathrow has been trying to find ways to make their runway + terminal scheme cheaper, as the airlines are not keen on paying the higher charges that would be needed. Ticket prices would rise. (ie. lower airline profit). The Arora Group’s proposals include altering the design of terminal buildings and taxiways, and reducing the amount of land to be built on. They know the alterations to roads, including the M25 and the junction of the M25 and the M4, are massive problems and “threaten deliverability” of the runway project. They therefore want to “shift the runway”. Where to? All this shows how very uncertain the runway plan has become, and the immense doubts – especially on money. Heathrow said they would welcome views on various options “in the public consultation later this year.” The plans must first be assessed by the Commons transport committee, be amended by the DfT and then voted on in Parliament …. it is not a quick process.
Arora’s plan for a cheaper 3rd Heathrow runway means putting it further east. ie. more noise for London
Surinder Arora, a hotel magnate, wants to get the 3rd Heathrow runway built quickly, and has made some suggestions of how it could be done more easily – and at least £5-6 billion more cheaply. But his scheme, for a shorter northern runway, means there would be even more noise pollution over London than from Heathrow’s own £17.6bn proposal. Heathrow airport did not, apparently, know of his plans till he went public with them. If the new runway was shorter (3.2km not 3.5km) and moved a bit east, to Sipson, there would be cost savings. But this could mean noisier flights over London as aircraft may have to fly slightly lower over London by something like 300 feet or so (at a guess). One of Heathrow’s reasons for its own location for the runway was to get this 300 ft or so height gain, claiming it would make all the difference to noise levels. The 2009 scheme, by Heathrow, for a much shorter 2.2km runway failed in part because of noise concerns, as did a plan for a 2.8km runway rejected by the Airports Commission. Willie Walsh of IAG, and Craig Keeper of Virgin Atlantic, want the cheapest scheme possible, to keep their costs down, and avoid having to increase the cost of their air fares. Amusingly, the Heathrow airport runway plan involves demolishing one of Mr Arora’s 5 hotels at the airport, two of which are under construction. Mr Arora says he was not informed by Heathrow (Willie Walsh claimed the same, for his head office building).
Poland approves plans for a huge central airport to take 100 million annual passengers (x3 current number for the country)
The New Central Polish Airport is a proposed airport to be developed on a site between Lodz and Warsaw. The project has been subject of debate since 2006. However, the Polish government is expected to commence construction in 2017. The airport is expected become the hub of LOT Polish Airlines. Preparatory works are scheduled for completion by the end of 2019, while the airport is scheduled to open in 2027 and aims to cater for 100 million passengers per year (there are about 34 million Polish air passengers now). The government hopes the nation’s air traffic will reach 94 million by 2035. The decision to build this airport reverses a strategy based on expanding smaller regional ports with the help of funds provided by the European Union. Poland is also seeking to strengthen trade links with China, marketing itself as a port of entry into the EU’s single market for Chinese producers. The plan poses risks for the 14 regional airports built or refurbished over the last decade with EU funds, of which a majority is already struggling to be profitable amid passenger traffic intensity that reached only a third of the bloc’s average last year. Under the government plan, the Warsaw Okecie airport would eventually be shut. No potential dates for the closing were given.
Poland Approves Plan to Build $9.6 Billion Central Airport
By Marek Strzelecki (Bloomberg)
November 7, 2017,
Facility aims to handle up to 100 million passengers per year
Warsaw’s Okecie airport faces closure under government plan
Poland will build central airport for as much as 35 billion zloty ($9.6 billion) by 2027, reversing a strategy based on expanding smaller regional ports with the help of funds provided by the European Union.
The facility, which will probably be located in central Poland between Warsaw and Lodz, will be capable of servicing as many as 100 million passengers per year, or three times Poland’s current needs, under a plan approved by the government on Tuesday. Polish airports serviced 34 million passengers in 2016, an increase of 11 percent from a year earlier.
The nation’s air traffic is projected to reach 94 million by 2035, the government said. Poland is also seeking to strengthen trade links with China, marketing itself as a port of entry into the EU’s single market for the Asian country’s producers.
The plan poses risks for the 14 regional airports built or refurbished over the last decade with EU funds, of which a majority is already struggling to be profitable amid passenger traffic intensity that reached only a third of the bloc’s average last year.
Poland has invested at least 5.8 billion zloty to upgrade airports between 2007 and 2015, with 40 percent of the funds coming from the EU. While Poland’s biggest airport in Warsaw has some room to increase capacity from the 13 million passengers it serviced last year, its location within the boundaries of the capital city poses limitations.
Under the government plan, the Warsaw Okecie airport would eventually be shut. No potential dates for the closing were given.
Polish hub airport, road and infrastructure to cost up to $9.8 billion – draft document
WARSAW (Reuters) – Poland’s planned hub airport and accompanying road and railway improvements are likely to cost up to 34.9 billion zlotys (£7.22 billion), a draft document published by the government’s office on Friday showed.
Government ministers in March recommended building a new airport in central Poland that would begin operations in a decade. The government is expected to formally approve the plan for the “Solidarity” airport in the coming days.
The planned airport is to be built near the village of Stanislawow in the Baranow district between the cities of Warsaw and Lodz, Mikolaj Wild, the government official responsible for its construction said this week.
The airport is one of the flagship infrastructure projects of the right-wing Law and Justice (PiS) government, which came to power in late 2015 and remains popular among many Poles despite its clashes with the European Union’s executive arm.
The plan envisages that the airport itself would cost 16 to 19 billion zlotys, the accompanying railway infrastructure would cost 8 to 9 billion zlotys, while new roads and highways 1.8 to 6.9 billion zlotys.
The plan also envisages that a new city could be built near the airport that could include business parks and a conference centre capable of serving the central Europe region.
Experts have said that opening a new Polish hub airport would likely lead to the closure of several existing airports in central Poland. Some experts have said the new airport would struggle to become profitable and fill its capacity.
One of the main proponents of the project had been Polish state airline LOT [LOT.UL], which was saved from bankruptcy in 2012 by public aid, having struggled to compete against low-cost airlines such as Ryanair (RYA.I).
Ryanair, which has a roughly 30 percent share in the Polish market with a base at a small airport near Warsaw, warned the new airport could face the same fate as its German equivalent.
Berlin’s new airport, initially due to opened in 2011, has been beset by technical problems. It is currently scheduled to be completed in the second half of 2018.
Reporting by Marcin Goettig; Editing by Keith Weir
Leaders of 4 main councils opposed to Heathrow favour a Gatwick runway, and tell residents to respond to NPS consultation
Hillingdon, Richmond, Wandsworth and Windsor and Maidenhead councils have been campaigning against Heathrow expansion for more than a decade. They argue that expanding the airport will have a major impact on West London. The expansion will cause irreconcilable damage to the environment and people’s health. It will cost tax payers as much as £20bn. The four councils are encouraging their residents to respond to the 2nd NPS consultation, about a possible 3rd Heathrow runway (deadline 19th December). This consultation is happening partly due to complaints from the councils that the DfT had withheld important new information from the public. Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said: “A third runway at Heathrow would be disastrous for Londoners….” Cllr Paul Hodgins, Leader of Richmond Council, said: “This is all about having a single trophy airport, instead of a network of airports that brings greater benefit. Over the past ten years people in Richmond upon Thames have voiced their concerns about the possible expansion of Heathrow in their thousands. We must not stop telling the government that Heathrow expansion is the wrong choice.” The leaders of the four councils back a runway at Gatwick instead, preferring to transfer the misery onto others, whose interests they do not represent.
The councils do not appear to understand, or take seriously, the carbon implications of building either new runway – Heathrow or Gatwick – and the climate impact of encouraging huge UK aviation expansion ….
Stand up against Heathrow – have your say
15.11.2017 (Hillingdon Council)
Residents have just five weeks left to let the government know that expanding Heathrow should be off the table for good, in the latest consultation on the future of the airport.
Last month the government was forced to launch a consultation for a second time on its proposed National Policy Statement (NPS) for airports. This followed complaints from councils that they had withheld important new information back from the public.
Now, thanks to lobbying and legal efforts from four local councils, the latest consultation finally includes information on long-term aviation forecasts and the new national air quality plan – both missing from the original consultation. In addition, for the first time, the government has been forced to admit that expanding Gatwick airport makes financial and environmental sense.
Hillingdon, Richmond, Wandsworth and Windsor and Maidenhead councils have been campaigning against Heathrow expansion for more than a decade. They argue that expanding the airport will have a major impact on West London. The expansion will cause irreconcilable damage to the environment and people’s health. It will cost tax payers as much as £20bn.
Residents are encouraged to go online and have their say, even if they took part in the consultation earlier this year. The deadline for feedback is 19 December 2017.
To have your say, please go to: Heathrow expansion revised draft airports national policy statement consultation
Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said: “As we have said from the very beginning, Gatwick is a more sustainable option and one which can be delivered at a much reduced cost to the taxpayer, with far less damage to the environment and wellbeing of people.
“The previous consultation was a sham, and the government has finally admitted that expansion at Gatwick would be more economically beneficial. A third runway at Heathrow would be disastrous for Londoners, and I’d encourage all residents to have their say in the latest consultation now.”
Cllr Paul Hodgins, Leader of Richmond Council, said: “As we said at the time, the government’s left out key information in their first consultation that sheds new light on whether expanding Heathrow is the best option. So, they have to re-open the consultation.
“This time around they have been forced to admit – there is evidence which confirms that an extra runway at Gatwick provides greater economic benefit and less damage to health and the environment. This isn’t just about residents under the flight path. Why should people around the country pay higher prices to a near monopoly, which would also require more public investment that should be used elsewhere? This is all about having a single trophy airport, instead of a network of airports that brings greater benefit.
“Over the past ten years people in Richmond upon Thames have voiced their concerns about the possible expansion of Heathrow in their thousands.
“We must not stop telling the government that Heathrow expansion is the wrong choice. There are better options. This cannot be dragged out any further. I encourage everyone, go online now and have your say.”
Cllr Ravi Govindia, Leader of Wandsworth Council, said: “We have been very clear from day one about our objection to this expansion. The facts speak for themselves and aren’t going to change – the people of Wandsworth are not prepared to stand idly by and allow a scheme to take place that is going to have such a serious impact on the environment of our borough and the health of our residents.
“It is clear that expansion at Gatwick would cause less damage than Heathrow and it’s now time for all of us to have our say through this latest round of consultation, and ensure that the message goes out in no uncertain terms that Wandsworth is firmly against these proposals.”
Cllr Simon Dudley, Leader of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, said: “We have always said we believe Gatwick is the best place for airport expansion in the south east and this has been confirmed in the re-opened consultation.
“Not only would a third runway at Heathrow blight our residents’ lives but it is clearly not the best option on the table.
“I would encourage residents to once again make their voices heard during this extended round of consultation.”
At a packed meeting in Harmondsworth, there were great contributions by local MP John McDonnell and Cait Hewitt, Deputy Director of the AEF (Aviation Environment Federation). John reiterated his certainty that the runway will not go ahead. He went through the many reasons, including air pollution, noise, carbon emissions and economics. And he emphasised the difficulties the government has with the politics, as so many constituencies are now marginal and so local issues (such as Heathrow airport impacts) would be key in a future election. John McDonnell said: “I’m into Parliamentary democracy, but I cannot allow this to happen to this area. The Government has responsibility to protect people and this project cannot happen”. Cait Hewitt spoke about the insuperable problem of air pollution that a 3rd Heathrow runway would cause: “Government’s own recent forecasts show there is a high risk of a breach to air quality targets” … “The Government is prepared to gamble on air quality to build a third runway.” The AGM also heard about problems of Heathrow withholding payments to those who have already sold up, and not paying all estate agent and moving costs. Residents do not trust Heathrow’s pledges on compensation payments, in the event that they were forced from their homes.
Clear message from residents at the Stop Heathrow Expansion (SHE) AGM: NO 3rd Runway
At a packed meeting in Harmondsworth, there were great contributions by local MP John McDonnell and Cait Hewitt, Deputy Director of the AEF (Aviation Environment Federation).
John reiterated his certainty that the runway will not go ahead. He went through the many reasons, including air pollution, noise, carbon emissions and economics. And he emphasised the difficulties the government has with the politics, as so many constituencies are now marginal and so local issues (such as Heathrow airport impacts) would be key in a future election.
John McDonnell said:
“I’m into Parliamentary democracy, but I cannot allow this to happen to this area. The Government has responsibility to protect people and this project cannot happen” – and that if the runway was pushed through, he would be taking part in direct action.
John explained the crumbling case for a 3rd Runway. Whether it’s taxpayer funding, benefits to the UK, pollution and climate change – Heathrow is not the answer. “The Government wanted this wrapped up by now. The fact they are delaying just shows how uncertain they are about how the case for a 3rd runway stands up”.
Cait Hewitt spoke about the insuperable problem of air pollution that a 3rd Heathrow runway would cause: “Impacts on air quality whilst constructing a 3rd runway have not been considered. None of the modelling we have been through has assessed this major breach to local quality of life….
“Government’s own recent forecasts show there is a high risk of a breach to air quality targets” … “The Government is prepared to gamble on air quality to build a third runway.”
Cait said that it is not even as if the sacrifice of the health and well being of local people was for a development overwhelmingly beneficial to the nation. The Heathrow runway economic benefits to the UK would be tiny, and probably even NEGATIVE when all relevant costs taken into account.
The AGM also heard about the underhand practices of Heathrow locally in leafletting about compulsory purchase. People expressed their anger at the unacceptable delays people who have sold up their homes to Heathrow have had in getting the extra 10% they were promised. The airport is keen to withhold this for as long as possible. An other case was mentioned where a family who sold to Heathrow were substantially out of pocket (many tens of thousands of ££s) as their house purchase fell through. Heathrow, though saying it will pay for estate agent costs, would not pay for the additional costs of moving, if a sale does not go through. All in all, confirmation that Heathrow and its offers are not to be trusted. Residents who face the compulsory loss of their homes, if there was a runway, are understandably very worried.
Protest at Lelystad airport (Netherlands) about its expansion, to take holiday flight pressure off Schiphol
Several hundred activists demonstrated at Lelystad Airport in the Netherlands, against the planned expansion of the airport. They had placards, banners and horns to blast noise. Lelystad is scheduled to take over flights from Schiphol as of April 2019, when its runway extension opens. It will be taking some of the pressure off Schiphol, acting as an extra runway for holiday flights to European destinations. Local people are very worried that the 25,000 flights per year will cause a significant noise burden, and many people are horrified about the noise threat which they could not have anticipated years ago when they bought their homes. The protesters want the weather and environmental impacts re-calculated. There are due to be discussions with government agencies on flight path routes. In October 2017 the government admitted there had been errors in calculating the amount of noise, or how much noise each plane makes, but did not expect the errors to affect the chosen flight path routes or the airport opening in 2019. A petition in September got 68,000 signatures, and while a huge number of people oppose the plans, some welcome the more convenient holiday flights the move to Lelystad would allow.
Action leaders protest against expansion Lelystad Airport
A few hundred activists have demonstrated at Lelystad Airport against the expansion of the airport. They had plates and banners with them. Also, it was well-torn to blow noise out of noise.
Lelystad is scheduled to take over flights from Schiphol as of April 2019. Against the plans, there is a lot of resistance, because the routes of traffic would cause a lot of noise.
The manifestation was also members of GroenLinks, the Party for the Animals and the SP. The manifestation was organized by several action groups. They demand that the weather and environmental impacts be re-calculated. Former Secretary of State Dijksma investigated the effects of enlargement. Later it turned out that calculations were made.
Action leaders against expansion Lelystad Airport ANP
According to Laagvliegroute Action Group NO, the demonstrators not only came from the region, but also from Eindhoven and Rotterdam, where regional airports are also. Minister van Nieuwenhuizen of Infrastructure and Water Management has invited a delegation of residents from North Holland, Gelderland, Drenthe, Overijssel and Flevoland to discuss the approach routes.
Action Laagvliegroute NO says not to push the NOS for consultation with the Citizens’ Committee. “The Ministry sets conditions that we can not meet, so we must agree with the renewed airport, and we will not do that,” says Leonhard Beijderwellen of Laagvliegroute NO. A spokesman for the ministry does not agree that people who are in favor should agree.
A third of the inhabitants in the region do not see the expansion of Lelystad Airport, according to a survey by the regional newspaper De Stentor. 46 percent of respondents rightly welcome the plans. A petition of opponents was signed in September 68,000 times.
LELYSTAD AIRPORT TO SERVE 25,000 ANNUAL FLIGHTS BY 2023; SITE IS 50KM FROM AMSTERDAM OOST
By Janene Pieters
June 19, 2017
Lelystad airport may accommodate some 25 thousand annual flights within four or five years after its extended runway opens in April 2019, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment confirmed to the Telegraaf.
The airport is intended to serve as an extra runway for Schiphol, taking some pressure off the Amsterdam airport by handling many holiday flights to destinations within Europe. The Ministry’s intention is to initially give Lelystad 16 of Schiphol’s flights, amounting to 68 daily landings and takeoffs, according to the newspaper.
Lelystad airport has a competitive location, being just under 50 kilometers from Amsterdam Oost, Amsterdam Zuidoost, Utrecht, Amersfoort and Apeldoorn. It is also located within 40 kilometers from Almere and Hilversum.
Not everyone is happy with the plans to expand Lelystad airport. According to the Telegraaf, residents of Flevoland, Friesland, Gelderland and Overijssel are protesting against it, because they did not know they would face noise from Lelystad’s approach routes when they bought a house in the area.
State Secretary acknowledges a calculation error in Lelystad airport report
16th October 2017
Deputy State Secretary Sharon Dijksma acknowledges that there are accounting errors in the investigation into the environmental impact and the associated noise pollution of Lelystad Airport. She will correct the calculations, but do not expect the errors to affect the chosen route routes and to the airport opening in 2019.
Some type of aircraft make more noise than was calculated by the National Aerospace Center, Dijksma writes in a letter to the Lower House.
Consequences very limited
Dijksma lets the data recover, but the effects of the errors seem very limited. She does not expect a new environmental impact report to be reported, reports Flevoland .
Lelystad has to take over many holiday flights from Schiphol in 2019. There are many concerns with citizens about noise pollution due to the expansion of the airport.
The wrong assumptions came to light after questions from the action group HoogOverijssel, reports RTV Oost . According to the foundation, Gelderland, Flevoland and Overijssel suffered much more noise from the new approach routes than was concluded.
No 3rd Runway Coalition letter to Chris Grayling, asking him to ensure adherence to Civil Service Code, correcting factual errors
The No 3rd Runway Coalition have written the Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling, to point out that civil servants and Ministers need to adhere to the Civil Service and Ministerial Codes of behaviour. These require correction of factual errors. The Coalition understand that, at Heathrow’s recent Business Summits, the airport’s publicity material about the estimated economic benefits of a 3rd runway has been misleading, claiming benefits far higher than the official Government figures published by the DfT. Heathrow claims benefits, generated by the runway, of £211 billion for the UK over 60 years. However, the figures from the DfT indicated that the maximum gross benefit could be £74 billion, over 60 years, with a Net Present Valuation (i.e. after all costs have been accounted for) of somewhere between £3 bn and a LOSS of £2.2bn, over 60 years. The Coalition understands that civil servants have attended the Heathrow summits, and failed to point out this inaccuracy. Also that DfT civil servants (and possibly Ministers) will be attending the Heathrow Business Summits of 8th November (at Heathrow) and 23rd November (in Derby). The Coalition is asking for assurance from Mr Grayling that any civil servants and Ministers attending will identify Heathrow’s erroneous claims and correct them, by spelling out to summit attendees the Government’s own figures.
Ministers and Civil Servants Told To Stop Breaching Codes Of Practice In Selling Heathrow Expansion
8.11.2017 (No 3rd Runway Coalition)
The No 3rd Runway Coalition has written to the Rt. Hon Chris Grayling, Secretary of State for Transport, seeking assurances that both civil servants and Ministers will observe their respective codes of behaviour, in relation to their attendance at Heathrow Business Summits on 23rd November, in Debry, and throughout the programme of summits to be held throughout 2018.
This follows reports that, at previous Business Summits in 2017, Heathrow’s publicity material about the estimated economic benefits of a third runway has been misleading, claiming benefits (£211bn) far higher than the official Government figures (a maximum of £74bn), as published by the Department for Transport.
Civil servants and ministers who were present at these summits failed to identify the inaccuracies and correct the misleading impression given to the audience. Their failure to call the audience’s attention to the Government’s estimated benefits amounted to an endorsement of Heathrow’s misleadingly high estimates.
Paul McGuinness, Chair of the No 3rd Runway Coalition, said:
“The Ministerial Code requires honesty and the Civil Service Code requires impartiality; and it is therefore wholly unacceptable, and in breach of the required standards, for either to sit in silence at Heathrow Business Summits, as these misleading figures are banded about. These codes can be breached through omission, as well as commission, and neither Ministers, nor civil servants, should allow themselves to be cast as colluders in Heathrow’s intentionally exaggerated claims.”
Notes for editors
- The Ministerial Code sets out the standards of behaviour for Ministers and incorporates the Seven Principles of Public Life. One of these principles, Honesty, states that “Holders of public office should be truthful”.
- The Civil Service Code sets out the standards of behaviour expected of civil servants. They must abide by the core values of integrity, honesty, objectivity and impartiality. In relation to honesty civil servants must “set out the facts and relevant issues truthfully, and correct any errors as soon as possible”. Civil servants must not “deceive or knowingly mislead ministers, Parliament or others”.
- At Heathrow’s previous Business Summits (12 May 2017 in Newquay, 15 June 2017 in Liverpool, 5 July 2017 in Wales, 8 September 2017 in Newcastle and 18 October 2017 in Edinburgh), Heathrow has publicised a figure of £211billion, as representing the estimated economic benefit of a third runway.
The list of summits in 2018 can be found here http://www.heathrowbusinesssummit.co.uk/2018
Ministers, including members of the Cabinet, have attended the summits, including: Chris Grayling MP, Alun Cairns MP and Lord Callanan (when aviation minister).
The maximum estimated accumulated gross benefit over 60 years of a Heathrow third runway, being “£112 – £211 Billion” was published in the Airports Commission’s interim report in 2014, but then significantly revised downward in the Airports Commission’s definitive, final report to a maximum possible gross benefit of £147 billion, over sixty years.
However, both ﬁgures were derived using what the Commission described as a ‘novel’ approach to capturing possible wider beneﬁts, which its own economic advisers said should be treated with caution given likely double counting and inexplicable results.
Indeed, by October 2016, the DfT’s “Further Review and Sensitivities Report” stated £61 billion (over sixty years) to be the maximum, gross, economy-wide beneﬁt that could possibly be derived from an expanded Heathrow, with a possible Net Present Value (i.e. when all costs are accounted for) in the range of £0.2 billion £6.1 billion.
However, on 24th October 2017, the Government stated £74 billion, spread over 60 years, to be its latest estimate of maximum, gross, economy-wide beneﬁt, with a Net Present Value of between £3bn and minus £2.2bn, over 60 years.
“Revised Draft Airports National Policy Statement” https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/revised-draft-airports-national-policy-statement
These figures are far lower than the economic benefit claimed by Heathrow.
- The No 3rd Runway Coalition (https://www.no3rdrunwaycoalition.co.uk/), the largest grouping opposing Heathrow expansion, is a growing coalition of MPs, local authorities, trade unions and residents backed by more than 18 local campaign groups. It continues to challenge the Government to drop plans for an additional runway at Heathrow Airport.
Rt. Hon Chris Grayling MP
Secretary of State for Transport
Great Minster House
33 Horseferry Rd
London SW1P 4DR
Date: 6 November 2017
Our Ref: N3RC\Grayling\061117L
Dear Mr Grayling,
BENEFITS OF A THIRD HEATHROW RUNWAY: CIVIL SERVICE AND MINISTERIAL CODES
We understand that, at Heathrow’s recent Business Summits, the airport’s publicity material about the estimated economic benefits of a third runway has been misleading, claiming benefits far higher than the official Government figures published by your department.
Heathrow claims benefits of £211bn over 60 years, whereas the Government’s corresponding figure is a maximum gross benefit of £74bn, over 60 years, with a Net Present Valuation (i.e. after all costs have been accounted for) of somewhere between £3bn and a loss of £2.2bn, over sixty years.
It appears that civil servants have attended these summits, and failed to point out this inaccuracy. We also understand that civil servants from your department (and possibly Ministers) will be attending the Heathrow Business Summits of 8th November (at Heathrow) and 23rd November (in Derby).
In order that attendance by civil servants and, if applicable, Ministers does not amount to endorsement of these misleading claims, and so as to ensure observance of both the Civil Service and Ministerial Codes, we seek your assurance that any attending civil servants and Ministers will identify Heathrow’s erroneous claims and correct them, by spelling out the Government’s own figures to summit attendees.
Chair, No Third Runway Coalition
The Civil Service Code states:
- set out the facts and relevant issues truthfully, and correct any errors as soon as possible
Stop Stansted Expansion say Government’s Aviation Forecast figures undermine Stansted’s claims on need for expansion
Claims by Stansted’s management that the airport’s growth potential over the next decade is being severely limited by the present cap on numbers at 35 mppa are being called into question by local campaign, Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE) following the publication of new Government figures. These numbers are in the DfT’s forecasts, published as part of the 2nd consultation on the Airports NPS (ie. Heathrow runway). Stansted’s owners, MAG, predict that it will be completely full by 2023 – and it therefore needs an increase in permitted numbers to be able to accommodate 43 million passengers in 2028. But SSE show that in the new DfT UK Aviation Forecasts, reveal this is wrong. The DfT central forecast for Stansted is that it should expect to handle just 31 million passengers annually by 2030, and 35 million by 2033. Not by 2023. Stansted airport has been talking up the need for further growth – in anticipation of its application for planning permission from Uttlesford District Council in early 2018. And if there was a 3rd Heathrow runway, the DfT projects a decline in the number of Stansted passengers – from 24mppa in 2016 to 22mppa in 2030, and just 32 mppa by 2040. SSE say: “MAG’s overstatement of potential demand to secure support for expansion is nothing more than an opportunistic ploy.” See full SSE analysis.
NEW GOVERNMENT FIGURES UNDERMINE STANSTED AIRPORT CLAIMS ON NEED FOR EXPANSION
Press release by Stop Stansted Expansion (SSE)
Claims by Stansted bosses that the airport’s growth potential over the next decade is being severely limited by the present cap on numbers at 35 million passengers per annum (mppa) are being called into question by Stop Stansted Expansion following the publication of new Government figures.
While the airport’s owners, Manchester Airports Group (MAG), predict that Stansted will be bursting at the seams by 2023 and needs an increase in permitted numbers to be able to accommodate 43 million passengers in 2028, the long-awaited UK Aviation Forecasts, published by the Government at the end of October, reveal this to be a gross misrepresentation of the reality.
The Government’s central forecast for Stansted is that it should expect to handle just 31 million passengers annually by 2030, and 35 million by 2033 [see Note 1 below], rather than the inflated figures touted by the airport this year as it talks up the need for further growth in anticipation of its application for planning permission from Uttlesford District Council in early 2018.
The lower expectations of demand at Stansted take full account of the fact that the Government expects Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton and London City Airports all to be 100% full by 2030 (Table 33), based on no additional runways and current planning caps remaining in place.
Furthermore, if, as planned, a third runway is built at Heathrow in the next 10 years, the Government projects that demand at Stansted would actually decline, from 24mppa in 2016 to 22mppa in 2030, and that even by 2040 the airport would still only be handling 32mppa, i.e. less than the present cap, which would not be reached until 2043.
According to the new forecasts, therefore, it is clear that needless damage would be inflicted on the local environment by the building of additional aircraft stands and new taxiways at Stansted in coming years when these won’t be needed for at least another quarter of a century and, potentially, never needed: a second Gatwick runway, for example, would reduce the demand for more capacity at Stansted still further, while concerns about climate change, pressure from oil prices, and security concerns could also weaken demand.
Commenting on the findings, SSE Chairman Peter Sanders said: “MAG’s overstatement of potential demand to secure support for expansion is nothing more than an opportunistic ploy. It is designed to take advantage of a lull during Government consultations on the future of aviation and to try to rush through permissions that might otherwise be restricted once the new aviation policy emerges towards the end of 2018.”
Continuing, he added: “MAG has presented its case as if failure to concede a further tranche of expansion would somehow compromise the rights of the travelling public as well as the UK economy, when the Government’s own figures show this to be far from the truth.”
The new Government forecasts also show that Ryanair’s dominance at Stansted has further increased in recent years with the Irish airline carrying 82% of all passengers in 2016 compared to 64% in 2011. [see Note 2 below] Over the past five years all the other Stansted airlines have declined by a total of 1.4m passengers, shrinking from 5.8m in 2011 to 4.4m in 2016.
Note to Editors
Note 1: see Table 32 and Fig 7.4 in UK Aviation Forecasts, published on 24 October 2017 and available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-aviation-forecasts-2017.
Table 32 (from page 101) is copied below: [The text above it in the document states:
Baseline airport forecasts
7.18 Table 32 shows the scenario forecasts under baseline capacity. As the airports become full, the forecast demand range narrows and the annual rates of growth reduce. By around 2040 this effect is evident even in the low growth scenario.
7.19 The range of the demand growth scenarios remains wider outside London. However airports which share some overlaps of catchment areas with the London airports (e.g. Birmingham and Bristol) experience ‘spill’ of passengers from London seeking alternatives to London airport and in time such airports also near or reach capacity. A full version of this table is in Table 63 in the data annexes.
And Figure 7.4 (Page ) is copied below:
Note 2: ibid, page 66. It states: “Ryanair continues to dominate at Stansted, carrying 68% of the passengers in 2011 and 82% in 2016. “
For further information and comment contact:
- Brian Ross, Deputy Chairman, SSE: M 07850 937143 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- Carol Barbone, Campaign Director, SSE: M 0777 552 3091 or email@example.com
- Sarah Cousins, SSE Campaign Office Manager: T 01279 814961 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Stop Stansted Expansion group claims Government forecasts cast doubt on case for raising passenger cap
6 November 2017
Campaigners opposed to an increase in the cap on passengers numbers at Stansted claim that new Government forecasts for growth in air travel undermine the case for expansion put forward by the airport’s owner.
The Stop Stansted Expansion group points to figures in the Department for Transport’s latest UK Aviation Forecasts document which include a “central forecast” of 31m for annual passengers numbers at Stansted in 2030 – within the current cap of 35m.
SSE chairman Peter Sanders said: “MAG’s overstatement of potential demand to secure support for expansion is nothing more than an opportunistic ploy. It is designed to take advantage of a lull during Government consultations on the future of aviation and to try to rush through permissions that might otherwise be restricted once the new aviation policy emerges towards the end of 2018.”
He added: “MAG has presented its case as if failure to concede a further tranche of expansion would somehow compromise the rights of the travelling public as well as the UK economy, when the Government’s own figures show this to be far from the truth.”
However, the DfT report states that the purpose of the forecasts “is primarily in informing longer term strategic policy rather than in providing detailed forecasts at each individual airport in the short term”.
It says the overall national forecast is subject to a level uncertainty, which is all the greater when applied to individual airports.
The report also says that the forecasts aim to reflect current planning restrictions and “should not be considered a cap on the development of individual airports”.
A spokesman for Stansted Airport said that its growth over the past five years had “significantly exceeded” previous projections from both the Government and the Airports Commission, effectively putting it 10 years ahead of where official forecasts said it would be.
“Unfortunately, the Government’s recently published forecasts suffer from the same fundamental flaws as their previous forecasts, in particular their failure to take account of commercial drivers that have delivered the exceptionally strong growth for Stansted Airport and its low cost carriers, such as highly competitive air fares and long term commercial agreements with airlines,” he added.
“For that reason we welcome the DfT’s acceptance that the purpose of its recently published forecasts is not to provide detailed projections for each individual airport, and the recognition that other forecasts may be more appropriate in informing local planning decisions.
“Looking to the future, our independently prepared traffic forecasts show continued strong growth at Stansted, with the airport serving 35m passengers in 2023. These forecasts provide the airport with the business case for the substantial investment in new passenger facilities that we will be making over the coming years.”
Leader of Hounslow Council, Councillor Steve Curran: “We’d like to see a better not bigger Heathrow”
Hounslow residents are being reminded they have just 6 weeks left to submit their views on the expansion of Heathrow to the DfT, through the government’s revised draft Airports National Policy Statement which includes information on long-term aviation forecasts. The 2nd consultation on the draft NPS also provides some information on the impact of changes arising from updated noise analysis, a new air quality plan, government policy changes and responses to the first consultation. The deadline for the consultation is December 19th. A 3rd Heathrow runway, with up to 50% more flights, would have a huge impact on Hounslow – and not only by the noise of flight paths over the borough. The Leader of Hounslow Council, Councillor Steve Curran, said: “Our position on Heathrow Airport remains, as it has always been, that we’d like to see a better not bigger airport. The government’s recommended expansion at Heathrow will have a huge impact on the residents and businesses of Hounslow. The council wants to ensure that issues of noise, pollution and additional congestion are properly addressed. … I strongly urge all Hounslow residents and businesses to make sure they have their say online.”
Heathrow Airport expansion: Hounslow residents encouraged to have their say on third runway proposals
The revised draft statement includes information on long-term aviation forecasts
By Lois Swinnerton (Get West London)
6th NOV 2017
Hounslow residents are being reminded they have just over six weeks left to share their views on the expansion of Heathrow Airport .
Locals can put forward their opinions to new evidence in the government’s revised draft Airports National Policy Statement which includes information on long-term aviation forecasts.
The statement also sets out the impact of changes arising from updated noise analysis, a new air quality plan, government policy changes and responses to the first consulation.
The consultation is open until December 19, so residents will have to ensure their views are submitted online before that date.
The Department for Transport has said it is still on track to submit its final proposals to Parliament in the first half of next year, after which MPs will vote on the proposals.
If approved, work on the expansion is expected to begin at the beginning of 2021.
‘Huge impact on Hounslow’
Leader of Hounslow Council, Councillor Steve Curran, said: “Our position on Heathrow Airport remains, as it has always been, that we’d like to see a better not bigger airport.
“The government’s recommended expansion at Heathrow will have a huge impact on the residents and businesses of Hounslow.
“The council wants to ensure that issues of noise, pollution and additional congestion are properly addressed.
“This Department of Transport consultation is an important step towards a final decision and I strongly urge all Hounslow residents and businesses to make sure they have their say online.
“Have a look at all the information and put your views across.
“The consultation is open to everyone and we want to ensure voices from our borough are heard.”
.[….. then there are comments by Heathrow airport …. the usual stuff ….]
More information about the planned expansion can be found on the government’s website .
To have your say, click here .
DfT publishes another 8 week consultation on the Heathrow NPS, showing further weaknesses
As stated in September, the Government has now published a second part of its consultation on the “Airports NPS”, on building a 3rd Heathrow runway. The 8 week consultation ends on 19th December. This consultation contains updated air passenger forecasts which were not produced for the earlier NPS consultation (which ended in May). It also looks at air pollution issues, which were not covered properly before, and also noise. This consultation comes exactly one year since the Government announced it favoured a 3rd Heathrow runway. The DfT is very aware of the problem Heathrow has with air pollution saying the runway means “there remains, however, a risk that the options could delay or worsen compliance with limit values, albeit decreasing over time.” Since the report by the Airports Commission, in July 2015, the arguments it put forward for the 3rd Heathrow runway have been seriously undermined – on economics, air pollution, carbon emission, noise, cost to the taxpayer etc. Yet Government tries to push on with it. Zac Goldsmith, MP for Richmond Park, commented: “It is as if our politicians have been collectively hypnotised, but sooner or later reality will click and the project will be shelved once again.” Consultation link
Andy McDonald (Shadow Transport Sec) speech – more clarity needed from government on aviation policy
Some comments by Andy McDonnell, to the AOA conference: “None of the Brexit policy papers covered transport – which doesn’t reflect well on the government’s priorities. … Labour’s view is that any new agreements for aviation following Brexit should replicate the status quo as far as possible including retention of access to the Single European Skies system and full membership of the European Aviation Safety Agency. … Last month’s revised public consultation into proposals for a third runway at Heathrow once again highlighted the urgent need for clarity on the future of airport capacity. … Labour supports expansion provided our tests on capacity, emissions and regional benefits are met. In addition, expansion must be premised upon making better use of our existing capacity and developing a strategy to support smaller airports. … we regret that aviation is not more prominent in either the air quality plan or clean growth strategy. Labour believes the Department for Transport needs to set out in more detail how it will deliver the provisions of the Climate Change Act within aviation. … We believe that any changes [to airspace] should be made on the basis of noise impact and in full consultation with affected communities.”
Aviation industry needs urgent clarity from the government on expansion and Brexit
3 November 2017 (Transport Times)
By Andy McDonald MP, Shadow Secretary of State for Transport
A strong aviation industry is crucial to the UK’s status as a global, outward looking nation; it is particularly important following our decision to leave the European Union.
The British aviation industry is the largest in the EU and the third largest in the world after the United States and China. It provides £50 billion of economic benefits to the UK as well as sustaining nearly a million jobs. Getting the right Brexit deal for aviation is therefore vital.
That’s why Labour has called on the government to prioritise securing an agreement on aviation as we leave the EU. None of the Brexit policy papers covered transport – which doesn’t reflect well on the government’s priorities. Airlines plan a year in advance, so working back from March 2019 means the deadline is four months away. This uncertainty is highly damaging for the industry although some companies evidently seem to be less concerned than others.
Labour’s view is that any new agreements for aviation following Brexit should replicate the status quo as far as possible including retention of access to the Single European Skies system and full membership of the European Aviation Safety Agency. Anything less will make life harder for the industry.
Last month’s revised public consultation into proposals for a third runway at Heathrow once again highlighted the urgent need for clarity on the future of airport capacity.
Labour supports expansion provided our tests on capacity, emissions and regional benefits are met. In addition, expansion must be premised upon making better use of our existing capacity and developing a strategy to support smaller airports.
The government’s consultation on its aviation strategy up to 2050 is welcome but we regret that aviation is not more prominent in either the air quality plan or clean growth strategy. Labour believes the Department for Transport needs to set out in more detail how it will deliver the provisions of the Climate Change Act within aviation.
We support the government’s proposals to modernise our airspace which were finally published last month. Modernisation can improve safety and increase efficiency while helping to constrain the environmental impact. We believe that any changes should be made on the basis of noise impact and in full consultation with affected communities.
There is a strong case for examining the overall effectiveness of air passenger duty. Is there a more effective way to drive behavioural change across the industry in terms of pollution and noise? At the very least there is a compelling case for one rate of air passenger duty across the United Kingdom.
We need to get more passengers to airports by public transport. I accept progress has been made on this but we need to go further, which is why Labour would instruct the National Infrastructure Commission to assess the surface access needs to our airports to inform future road building and investment into our rail network.
For example, the links between rail and airports for the 16 million people in the north of England are not good enough and the government’s plans for the region’s transport networks are unambitious. I know Manchester airport is investing £1 billion in a transformation programme. Labour supports a Crossrail for the North to boost connectivity between the region’s cities and drive economic growth across the north of England and into north Wales.
I don’t want to see air passengers short-changed by Brexit. UK air passenger rights following Brexit should not be less than they currently are.
The industry’s workforce is one of its greatest assets and, in consultation with the trade unions, the driving force for much of its success. Many UK airports have extensive investment plans totalling many billions of pounds. These plans are a great opportunity to boost the skills of the workforce and deliver apprenticeships, training and opportunities to local supply chains.
Three quarters of visitors to the UK come by air. Outside of the EU, we are going to need an entirely new framework for customs and border controls. The government must therefore commit to providing additional resources to Border Forces to ensure they can process the increased passenger numbers. It must also work closely with industry to adapt border arrangements following Brexit.
I am determined that new technology must not endanger the excellent safety record we have in the UK aviation industry. The government must consider bringing forward new and stronger regulations and, indeed, legislation to ensure that drones and lasers to not compromise air safety.
The Conservatives say that they are the champions of business. In fact, they are the first government in recent memory for whom the economy is not their number one priority. Labour will continue to support business and industry, including the aviation industry, through the many challenges and opportunities which lie ahead.
Edited version of a speech to the Airport Operators Association conference on 30th October.
Neil’s 400 mile walk to Scotland: Day 14 – Easter Monday meeting with Andy McDonald MP
On his 400 mile walk from Harmondsworth to Edinburgh, Neil missed spending Easter with his family – but he has his Uncle Ray, his sup[port driver. And powerful determination to save his village from a 3rd Heathrow runway. He has been walking at least 20 miles per day, getting ahead of schedule. On Bank Holiday Monday, Neil met up with Andy McDonald, MP for Middlesborough and Labour Shadow Transport Secretary. Andy was interested in the scrapbook of the Harmondsworth community that Neil is taking to Scotland, showing some of the people who would be affected by the runway. Neil and Andy talked about the amount of taxpayer money (including from people in all the regions) that would be necessary to support the runway – effectively helping fund a foreign company’s infrastructure in the south. They also talked about the tax evasion loop hole that Heathrow has exploited over the past ten years, paying high dividends but very low corporation tax. And the failure of Heathrow to live up to jobs promises in the past. Mr McDonald did say that he was looking at the government’s recommendation to see if it passed Labour’s “four tests” and that assessment is “underway.” Neil was impressed that Andy understood many of the issues well, and placed emphasis on ensuring a high quality of life for all.