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Heathrow expansion is bad for the environment, bad for the economy, and a social injustice

Heathrow is already the biggest source of carbon emissions in the UK, responsible for as much carbon dioxide as Croatia’s entire economy
Heathrow is already the biggest source of carbon emissions in the UK, responsible for as much carbon dioxide as Croatia’s entire economy Credit: GETTY

The continuation of plans for a third runway at Heathrow – and the original plan itself – is utter madness. It will be regarded as the worst decision ever made by the Department for Transport (DfT), and cannot justifiably go ahead if politicians are serious about the 2050 zero carbon emissions target, announced last week. In the meantime, while we wait for what seems like its inevitable cancellation, billions of pounds of taxpayer’s money is being wasted.

Permitting Heathrow expansion is a clear signal that modern politics favours current generations over future ones – in spite of the Youth Strikes 4 Climate, in spite of Greta Thunberg’s recent visit. The challenges to Heathrow expansion were lead by a coalition of Greenpeace, the Mayor of London, local councils, and Friends of the Earth. This wasn’t some niche, local objection, but part of a rising movement of concern about climate change.

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