Statement on Heathrow decision

Councillor Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council said: “It is astonishing that the government failed to properly take into account its climate change commitments under the Paris Agreement in developing its airports strategy. Aviation is a significant contributor to climate change and we will not successfully address the climate emergency without reducing the emissions from this sector. I am pleased that the courts have underlined this.
 
“Ealing Council values Heathrow as an important local employer and we want to see the airport thrive as a global hub. We will continue to work closely with Heathrow towards this end. However, we have always been clear that the third runway proposals are not acceptable and would place too heavy a burden on Ealing’s residents in terms of congestion, noise and air pollution.
 
“It is not clear if this judgement means that expansion is dead, but if it is this must not be used as an excuse for more planes to be squeezed into Heathrow at the expense of local residents’ quality of life. We remain very concerned that proposals for parallel approaches and removal of the western departure presumption would inflict aircraft noise on far more of Ealing’s residents. There must also be no reduction in periods of respite and Heathrow should work towards a complete ban on night-time arrivals and departures.
 
“Regardless of the future of expansion proposals, there remains an urgent need to improve transport links to Heathrow in order to move more airport journeys to public transport. That means urgently pushing ahead with the western and southern rail links, improving the Piccadilly line and securing better walking and cycling routes to the airport from areas where many employees live, including Southall.”