|Council angered by industry's 'malicious speculation' over Heathrow|
Expansion without more pollution not possible say Hounslow
Commenting on the report in last week's Times newspaper that BAA is developing a charging mechanism that will reduce pollution from vehicles, Cllr Barbara Reid, Hounslow’s lead member on Aviation issues, called on the industry to focus on the main polluters – namely the aircraft – before looking beyond the airport at road traffic.
She said "Speculation is rife that there will be a third runway at Heathrow. However, all the available science shows that EU health-related pollution levels remain unacceptable.
“We are not prepared to sacrifice the health and wellbeing of our communities when there is considerable doubt about future noise and pollution levels.
"Traffic pollution is a problem, but it is the Highways Agency, Transport for London and the surrounding Local Authorities that have responsibility for road policies, not BAA. Hounslow awaits the public consultation that will be issued by the Government on this matter, and will challenge or accept them as appropriate.”
Hounslow’s Leader, Cllr Peter Thompson, added “You don’t have to be a scientist to realise that more planes means more pollution. It is highly irresponsible to be considering further expansion at Heathrow when local residents are already experiencing levels of air pollution that exceed EU limits.
“Hounslow residents will not tolerate any more expansion. The Government’s insistence that Heathrow can only be an economic success if it is allowed to expand indefinitely is short-sighted and irresponsible.
“We neither want nor need a Third Runway at Heathrow. It’s time the Government focused its energies on making Heathrow both an economic success and a responsible neighbour.”
December 12, 2006