Heathrow airport allowed to expand!
London’s Heathrow Airport, one of the busiest airports in the world, may continue with the construction plans for a third runway. On Wednesday, this was the ruling passed by the Supreme Court of the UK. The Airport has been looking at expansion plans, since many decades now. It is not at all sure whether or not the runway will be done, as the COVID 19 crisis has almost totally shut down air traffic.
Prior to the COVID 19 crisis, the Airport raked in around 80 million passengers each year. The third runway, estimated at around £14 billion (€15.5 billion), should allow 700 additional flights a day. This put the expected number of passengers per year to around 130 million. Due to the COVID 19 crisis, it was reported earlier by Heathrow, that the third runway would be completed in 2031, not in 2026.
Heathrow Airport has been looking to expand for decades. Now it is allowed by the judge. However, due to Corona, it is uncertain whether the extra runway will be added.
Environmental organizations that initiated the legal proceedings, responded, disappointed to hear the verdict. In February, climate activists in the UK and also in the Netherlands, were delighted with the decision of the London court. ‘Paris’ had been successfully implemented by a court, for the first time. As per the Supreme Court, the expansion plans of the Airport are legal.
Though according to the court, the plans dated back from a time, when lesser climatic targets were applicable.
On Wednesday, a lower court judgment, was rejected by the highest judiciary in the United Kingdom. The expansion plans were banned in February, by the London court, as the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement targets set, had been violated by Heathrow. A third runway at Heathrow Airport would cause too many emissions of harmful substances.