Tories vow to ditch Stansted expansion plans

9.5.2009   (New Civil Engineer)

Shadow Transport secretary Theresa Villiers renewed her pledge to scrap plans
for a second Stansted runway yesterday at a meeting with campaign group Stop Stansted
Expansion (SSE)


At the meeting, Villiers discussed the implications of the Competition Commission’s
ruling that BAA must sell Stansted and heard details of the reduction in the Government’s
air passenger forecasts which now show that there would no demand for a second
Stansted runway before 2030.

At the end of the meeting Villiers said that she was "… more convinced than ever
that a second Stansted runway was environmentally unacceptable and could not be
justified on economic grounds."

However, she also recognised there was a risk that there may be an attempt by
the Government to rush the application through before the next General Election.

SSE strongly welcomed the Shadow Secretary of State for Transport’s recognition
that a second Stansted runway made neither environmental nor economic sense.  

"The Shadow Secretary of State was remarkably well informed about the issues
at Stansted but nevertheless keen to understand every detail about the current
situation,"   said SSE Economics Adviser Brian Ross

"It was helpful that earlier this week the leaders of some of Britain’s leading
businessmen came out against airport expansion, very much echoing the doubts about
the economic benefits which SSE has been expressing for a long time."