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MPs say no expansion of Heathrow without key green commitments

by on December 3, 2015

The Government should not back the building of a third runway at Heathrow until a number of key environmental conditions can be met, MPs have urged.

That’s the view of the Commons Environmental Audit Committee which this week published a report insisting that if the administration opts for expansion at Heathrow it must be able to reconcile this with meeting legal air pollution limits.

The all-party group of MPs also said that ministers would have to be in a position to commit to covering the costs of surface transport improvements, introducing a night flight ban and be able to show that an expanded Heathrow would be less noisy than a two-runway Heathrow.

A decision is due later this month on the independent Airport Commission’s recommendation for a bigger Heathrow.

Committee, Huw Irranca-Davies MP said: “To defer dealing with the environmental impact of a third runway would be irresponsible and could lead to legal challenges as a result of the potential damage to public health from increased air pollution and noise.

“If the Government decides to accept the Commission’s recommendation for a third runway in principle, we will seek assurances from the Secretary of State for Transport that environmental conditions will be met before it is given final approval.”

View the report


Roger Milne

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