Is Britain’s decision of restricting Airport Growth really going to Aid climate?


These days, ‘Binge Flying’ is creating hype in Britain’s aviation industry. The recent action taken by Britain’s coalition government for the sake of the environment protection by refusing to build new runways around London to accommodate more planes is creating controversy everywhere.

Quite sometime ago, the UK elections ended, where now, the new coalition government seems to be in its full action with activities like the cancellation of longstanding plans to build a third runway at Heathrow Airport in May 2010.

Things like, Prime Minister David Cameron taking hold of the runaway expansion plans, in order to aid climate change and high levels of greenhouse gas emissions from aviation, etc. has led to a platform for difference in opinions.

The probability that he would also reject the consent for new runways at Gatwick and Stansted, London’s second-string airports is also creating waves in Britain’s aviation industry.

Well, the real cause could be an increase in the number of weekend flights that goes against the usual and easy recurrent flights, as England has become a focal point for low-cost airlines.
Also, other areas of concern like the 2008 Climate Change Act that keeps the government adhering to reductions in emissions by at least 34 percent by 2020, as compared to the levels that were reached in 1990 is also there.

As a matter of fact, the lure to make bigger airports is immense for urban cities as new businesses and tourism contribute to the economy of the country. In view of this backdrop, the airports in Europe that are now mostly run by private companies are favoring the airport expansion and the increase in number of runaways.

The enduring example is that of the Heathrow airport where communities nearby fought for almost a decade against the airport’s runway expansion. Though people have been complaining about noise and nitrous oxide pollution in its vicinity, Heathrow airport, is one of the world’s busiest airports and a major connection point for destinations in Europe, South Asia, and the Middle East, demonstrating that a third runway may surely become a turning point in Britain’s aviation industry, benefiting the country’s economy.

Heathrow airport, which is infamous for its flight delays and endless queues; is the only airport of its size with just two runways. So, the need of a third runaway may decrease runway queues and planes circling the skies thus, preventing air congestion and therefore reducing emissions above heathrow.

To be precise, the difference of opinions and highly politicized government decisions are causing a delay in the proper assessment of the situation and need.

In such a scenario, the option of a high-speed rail network projected to substitute short-haul flights would be a better alternative. Now, only time will tell as to how things actually turn out. .

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