Marcus Evans Group | Worldwide Headquarters | American Offices | Latin America | European Offices | African / Asian Offices

Letters: Alternatives to Heathrow expansion

Your article on the increased vigour of business lobbying in favour of Heathrow expansion (Report, 2 February) neglected to ask a simple question: does the UK need more airport capacity? We’d suggest no. A recent report by WWF and the Aviation Environment Federation shows that there is already sufficient runway and terminal capacity in the south-east and other regions to meet demand to 2050.

It’s important to note too that the UK Climate Change Act has set a legally binding target to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050 and aviation is expected to contribute to the achievement of this target. The advice of the Committee on Climate Change is that aviation emissions return to 2005 levels by 2050. However, the spokespeople from BAA, British Airways’ parent company IAG, and from London business lobby group London First all fail to mention climate change, or carbon emissions.
Jean Leston
Senior transport policy adviser, WWF-UK

• Stansted has land to accommodate a second runway, so why can’t this option be taken seriously. And why can’t Stansted become a hub airport? It is better placed to serve the Midlands and the north, and compared to Heathrow it sits in a relatively unpopulated rural area. Stansted must have a strong case on environmental and amenity grounds, which may not carry much weight with the Heathrow lobbyists but should make it a serious contender. It would need a new high-speed rail link to London and the east coast mainline, and would not come cheap, but to dismiss it would be a lost opportunity.
Bill Hunter
Holmfirth, West Yorkshire © 2012 Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies. All rights reserved. | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions | More Feeds