Airport expansion’s disastrous effects, near and far


The Guardian, 24 October 2016:

Nigel Milton appears to be living in a parallel universe. Under current EU legislation, it is impossible to give the go-ahead for a third runway without an avalanche of legal challenges. Heathrow breaches the EU air quality directive for a number of pollutants, but nitrogen dioxide is the most intractable as local traffic and congestion is bound to increase in line with passenger numbers. The strategy being adopted by Heathrow management depends upon new diesel engines emitting less pollutants than current models, but this strategy is doomed to failure as recent studies demonstrate that even Euro 6 diesel engines emit much more NO2 on the road than they do in lab testing.

I suspect the reason that Theresa May has delayed a parliamentary vote on Heathrow (Report, 19 October) is to give the UK parliament time to invoke article 50, and repeal the relevant EU air quality directive. However, the chances of such a manoeuvre getting past the House of Lords is close to zero.

Dr Robin Russell-Jones
Chair, Help Rescue The Planet


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