HIGH COURT CHALLENGE TO STANSTED AIRPORT DECISION
An Appeal will be heard in the High Court over three days – 24, 25 and 26 February, following a legal challenge against the Government’s decision to give permission to the BAA to expand Stansted Airport to 35 million passengers per year. A decision is expected in early March. The legal challenge has been brought by Stop Stansted Expansion.
Dr. Rupert Read, Prospective Green MEP for Eastern Region, will attend the pre-hearing rally to support the campaigners. The Green Party in Eastern Region has consistently supported the campaigns against expansion at Stansted – and Heathrow, Luton, Southend, Norwich and other airports.
Essex Green Party has been active in the campaign to stop Stansted Airport expanding into the countryside for several decades.
There will be a 9.30 am photocall for 10.00 am start on Tuesday 24th February outside the Royal Courts of Justice in the Strand.
Dr. Rupert Read said:
“We strongly support the long-standing efforts of Stop Stansted Expansion to thwart the might of the BAA and the Government.
“We live in strange times. On the one hand, the UK Government states, in the strongest terms, that it fully accepts the scientific case that manmade climate change is a major threat and that it intends to substantially cut the UK’s CO2 emissions. On the other hand, the same Government is pushing ahead with plans to expand Heathrow and Stansted and also supports a raft of other airport expansions, in the full knowledge that this will increase UK CO2 emissions by millions of tonnes per year.
“And whilst on the one hand ministers will tell us how important it is to protect the environment and people’s quality of life, their Heathrow and Stansted airport expansion plans will result in the destruction of the homes and businesses of thousands of people, the loss of huge tracts of countryside, loss or damage to ancient woodlands and the degradation of quality of life for communities near the airports and under flight paths. In the case of Stansted, this is all to allow even more cheap flights.
“No wonder voters have become deeply cynical about traditional politicians. We need a fresh start, and Greens are ready to step up to be part of that process – where our elected politicians say what they mean and mean what they say. If elected as a Green MEP on June 4th, I pledge to consistently oppose further airport expansion and will not deviate from that pledge.”
SSE’s legal action will concentrate on three aspects of the Government’s decision to approve the extra 10 million passengers a year and the related flights:
1. That the increase in carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gas emissions, however substantial, can be disregarded;
2. That the economic impact on the UK trade deficit, however adverse, can be disregarded;
3. That the adverse noise impacts upon local residents and people living further afield cannot amount to a reason for refusal because to do so would frustrate Government policy.