Top business executives lead revolt on Heathrow 3rd runway
plans for a third runway at London’s Heathrow airport.
Kingfisher, and Sir Roy Gardner, chairman of Compass – and highlights the deep divisions within the business community over the expansion
of Britain’s largest airport.
saying environmental concerns were outweighed by benefits to the economy. The
CBI and TUC led a vigorous business lobby in favour of the extra runway.
about the decision on the third runway, both in terms of the rationale put forward
and the environmental impact. It’s possible to be pro-transport, pro-aviation
and yet, at the same time, pro responsible citizenship."
not been made. A business perspective on the situation would focus much more
on how we restructure existing resources at Heathrow, with high-speed rail and
options at other airports, before pushing ahead with more capacity that seems
to be driven by transit-passenger growth rather than improving Heathrow as a hub
for UK plc."
review of the options, but have felt inhibited about speaking out for fear of
somehow being seen as disloyal to the business community. I believe the opposite,
which is that responsible business leaders must bring their experience to this
debate to ensure we get the right answer for the UK in the long term."
and BAA, Heathrow’s owner, all of whom stand to benefit from the airport’s expansion
and have campaigned strongly for it.
in their cornflakes this morning when they read how business leaders are lining
up to oppose the construction of a new runway at Heathrow. As we reveal today,
a group of Britain’s top entrepreneurs, including Charles Dunstone of Carphone
Warehouse and Justin King of J Sainsbury, have had enough of everyone assuming
that they support the plan. They think a third runway at Heathrow is a dumb idea
and are not afraid to say so.
The business community, carefully marshalled by British Airways, Virgin Atlantic
and BAA, was regarded as a natural supporter of Heathrow expansion. The CBI and
TUC, normally deadly rivals, made common cause on the issue, and urged Brown to
back the runway because the benefits to the economy outweighed the harm done to
to approve the new runway earlier this year. It now turns out that not all business
leaders agree with what Brown was told, and some of them would like the issue
to be looked at again.
over the capital, increased greenhouse gas emissions, air pollution in west London
from increased activity around Heathrow and the nuisance of extra noise â€” the
rebellious executives say the business benefits from an expanded Heathrow are
not clear. Many of the extra trips could be done by high-speed rail, they say,
and the two existing runways at Heathrow should provide sufficient capacity to
answer Britain’s network needs.
Heathrow to grow again as a true hub would merely promote transfer traffic â€” a
worthy goal for airports such as Dubai, where the whole intention is to create
a transport interchange, but not for a crowded island like ours, where servicing
genuine visitors should be the priority.
& Co will be accused of not understanding the airline business, of failing
to see that, without an extra runway at Heathrow, London will become an international
backwater, with an economy robbed of the high-value trade associated with extra
business world supports their runway plan. The tide has begun to turn against
expansion at Heathrow.
their businesses. But they are serious about the environment and they want a rethink
of a government decision that they believe is flawed. They will break their silence
tomorrow in an open letter and I will be surprised if they don’t gain huge support.
This is an emotive subject and a large percentage of the public say their voice
has not been properly heard.
benefit of new runways at Heathrow and Stansted. But Geoff Hoon said the mistake
did “not materially affect” evidence presented on the impact of expansion of the
airport. The Heathrow 3rd runway and 6th terminal net benefit comes down from
£5.4billion to £5.1billion. (Standard)
economic and environmental case for expanding Heathrow airport. The briefing produced
last week by House of Commons library researchers, who are widely respected for
their objectivity and trusted by MPs, casts doubt on some of the government’s
key assumptions. (Sunday Times)
of 241 from all other businesses.
that business is clamouring for a 3rd runway. Outside the aviation industry,
only 241 businesses from right across the UK felt the need to express their view.
How underwhelming is that." (HACAN)