Scottish Government Urged to Intervene in Heathrow Plans

19.2.2008     (All media Scotland)

The UK Government are currently backing plans to build a third runway at Heathrow
(1), which would lead to a 180 million tonne increase in Britain’s emissions from
air travel between 2020 and 2060. (2)  

The third runway would also be likely to increase short-haul flights to Scotland
– the most recent figures show that almost 15 million domestic flights are taken
each year from London’s airports. (3)  

It is estimated that the construction cost for the runway would be a staggering
£13bn. (4)

The Scottish Government must be consulted by law as part of this process, because
of the implications such a decision would have for Scotland’s efforts to tackle
climate change.

Greens therefore today lodged a motion at Holyrood urging Scottish Ministers
to put their weight behind the campaign against a third runway at Heathrow. (5)

Patrick Harvie MSP said:

“Decisions made in London about Heathrow will not just affect the south-east
of England – Scotland must have its say too.  A third runway for Heathrow would
encourage ever more unnecessary shorthaul flights to and from Scottish airports,
making it even less likely that Scottish Ministers will be able to meet their
climate targets.

“The rail network is in desperate need of investment, and £13bn would be much
better spent on sustainable transport than wasted on this outdated approach to
air travel.”


1. See:

2. Figure from London Councils research:

3. Civil Aviation Authority figures:

4. See:

5. Patrick Harvie’s motion as lodged today at Holyrood:   That this Parliament
calls upon the Scottish Government to take into consideration its own commitments
to reducing carbon emissions and to promoting sustainable transport when formulating
its response to the DfT consultation ‘Adding Capacity at Heathrow Airport’, and,
given such commitments, urges Ministers through this consultation to oppose the
proposals for the construction of a third runway at Heathrow.

James Mackenzie

Media and Communications

Scottish Green MSPs

Scottish Parliament

Edinburgh EH99 1SP

Tel: 0131 348 6360

Mob: 0790 99 33 074

Fax: 0131 348 5972

Contact: James Mackenzie

Email: 0131 348 6360