Ruth Cadbury MP has blasted Heathrow Airport for its intention to expand its number of flights per year by 25,000, regardless of whether or not it expands the third runway. Under current planning laws Heathrow is limited to 480,000 flights per year. This announcement comes at the start of Heathrow's consultation with local residents from the 8th January until 4th March 2019.
Speaking after the announcement, Ruth said ''I'm dismayed by this reckless push from Heathrow to expand the number of flights by 25,000, regardless of whether or not they build the third runway.
These proposals will mean more noise pollution, more air pollution and more congestion in west London. It also could affect the viability of direct long-haul flights from other UK airports. The Government's own figures show the national case for expanding Heathrow is very weak.
I'm very concerned that extra flights on the existing two runways will lead to both runways being used simultaneously for landings, and the current eight hour noise respite period being cut. This means yet more noise for those under the current flight paths in Hounslow, Isleworth and the south half of Chiswick. It will also mean the current 7 hour night flight regime will be relaxed, when what we actually need is a complete ban on night flights.
And a third runway will mean tens of thousands of people in Heston, Osterley, Brentford and north Chiswick not currently under the approach path to Heathrow will experience extreme levels of aircraft noise they have not experienced before. A recent report from the World Health Organisation found that we need much tougher regulations on noise pollution, and we already know that noise pollution is linked to an increase in cardiovascular disease and also impairs children's cognitive learning.
It's simply unacceptable that people will face more disruption purely so that Heathrow can push through an extra 68 flights a day.
I'm really glad that we have local campaign groups such as chATR, BashR3 and HACAN campaigning against Heathrow expansion, and I will continue to work to stop this disastrous increase in flights. ''