With the Government backing of a third runway at Heathrow will this break the pollution laws? A spokesman for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy doesn't believe so stating: “The government agrees with the Airports Commission’s assessment that a new runway at Heathrow can be delivered within the UK’s carbon obligations."
This is also backed up by a new, independent research suggesting that Heathrow airport could build a new runway without breaking European pollution laws. The study measured nitrogen dioxide (NO2) levels in and around the airport and then used modelling to predict what would happen in the future.
However the current policy is for aviation emissions in 2050 to be frozen at 2005 levels - this will be a challenge, which the Government recognise, and considering how to continue to reduce the UK emissions across the economy through the 2020s the Government will set this out in their emissions reduction plan, which will send an important signal to the markets, businesses and investors.
Cait Hewitt, Deputy Director of the AEF said: “The assumption would have to be that over the next decade, we’d move from having something like 57% of London’s vehicles fleet being diesel vehicles to instead having ultra-clean electric vehicles throughout the capital. There just isn’t evidence to suggest that’s going to happen.”