16th Dec 2020 update from John McDonnell MP

18/12/2020 -
Supreme Court Verdict.

Dear Fellow Resident

Supreme Court Decision on Heathrow 3rd Runway.

As you may know, I write to local residents in the Heathrow villages whenever there is a need to update people on the 3rd runway proposal.

You may have seen reports in the media that the Supreme Court has recently overturned an earlier court decision that the Government had acted illegally in its airport policy by not taking into account international agreements on tackling climate change when it considered a 3rd runway. The Supreme Court's decision simply means that the Government has to take climate change agreements and policies into account when at a later stage a planning application may be submitted.

My view is that far from allowing a 3rd runway the Supreme Court decision makes it even more certain that a 3rd runway will not go ahead. This is because the Government has this month massively increased the target for tackling climate change. The target for achieving net carbon zero emissions was 2050. Now the Governrnent has set a target of a 68% reduction by 2030.

This is a really challenging target that effectively rules out the sort of expansion that a 3rd runway would mean. The Government's own Climate Change Committee had already ruled out any further airports' expansion without dramatic changes to aviation engineering and operations, none of which are on the horizon and certainty not evidenced at Heathrow.

So, despite a lot of media interest in the court decision and statements from Heathrow Airport Ltd, there is little that has changed, and the groundswell of opinion is that given the increasing urgency of tackling climate change the 3rd is not a realistic proposition.

I am urging Heathrow Airport Ltd to be realistic and work with its staff via their unions and the local community to make Heathrow airport better not bigger. That means making Heathrow the world leader in creating an airport that is environmentally sustainable. This will preserve jobs at the same time as preserving our local environment and the planet. Let's all work together to achieve that goal.

Finally let me take this opportunity to wish you and your family a Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year.

Best wishes,

John McDonnell MP - Member of Parliament for Hayes and Harlington