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Government's Aviation Plans Guilty Of Damaging The Environment

December 13, 2004 1:30 PM

Liberal Democrats in the West Midlands have welcomed a move by protesters to challenge the Government's Aviation White Paper in the High Court in London today.

Although their challenge is focussing on plans for expansion at Stansted Airport this is seen as a test case, which could mean Airports like Birmingham and Coventry having to review their expansion plans.

Liberal Democrats across the West Midlands have consistently voiced their opposition to the expansion plans for Airports in the region and say this could be a vital step in urging the Government to think again.

West Midlands Euro-MP Liz Lynne said:

"I wish the Stansted protesters well in their court action and hope this will force the Government and Airports across the West Midlands to change their mind on expansion.

"We have consistently opposed airport expansion across the West Midlands because of the damage it would cause to the local environment.

"The white paper makes a mockery of the Government's targets on carbon dioxide emissions. It is time they reformed aviation taxation to support cleaner fuels and more efficient aircraft. Aviation fuel should be taxed in the same way as other fuels and subject to the Kyoto Protocol."

Liberal Democrat PPC for Solihull Lorely Burt added:

"Following the court case by people protesting about Stansted Airport I hope Solihull Council will re-examine the need for a challenge to the expansion plans for Birmingham Airport.

"A new runway is totally unnecessary. Residents have too put up with too much noise and pollution as it is without the additional disruption the new plans would cause.

"The airport should not be expanded beyond its existing boundary. Even according to the government's own, questionable statistics, the current runway won't reach maximum capacity for more than 20 years."


For further information, comment or to book an interview, please telephone Liz Lynne on 0033388177521 (Strasbourg) or 077644 52725(mobile) or Press Officer Stuart Ritchie on 01789 266354 or 07833668158