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Change of policies from both government and opposition?

1st September, 2010

There are hints of changes in aviation policy from both the coalition government and the Labour opposition.

Labour leadership contender, Ed Miliband, said that if elected as leader he would abandon Labour’s support for a third runway at Heathrow. (Reported in the Evening Standard, 31/8/10). See update at end of this story.

The government is holding firm on its opposition to a third runway and to extra runways at Gatwick and Stansted. The latest confirmation is a statement issued for the ‘Examination in Public’ of the London Plan, the spatial strategy for London.

However, policy gaps still remain in relation to aviation and climate change. The coalition has refused to confirm whether the last (Labour) government’s commitment to ensure aviation’s CO2 emissions are down to 2005 levels by 2050 still stands. And there have been some signs that the whole issue of climate change may be low on the coalition’s agenda.

Update – 10.9.10

Labour leadership frontrunner David Miliband today resurrected the idea of a third runway at Heathrow.

He believes that it could boost London’s economy and businesses, according to sources close to him, and that it should go ahead as long as the climate change consequences are addressed.