Reacting to reports that a decision on airport expansion will not be taken until Winter 2017/18, Friends of the Earth Scotland Director Dr Richard Dixon commented

“In a year’s time the need to rapidly cut our emissions will be even more urgent than it is today and expanding either Heathrow or Gatwick will look like the terrible ideas they are.

“The Paris climate deal means we must be reducing climate emissions from energy, transport and agriculture if we want to keep temperature rises beneath 1.5C. Building new runways is a huge step in the wrong direction. “

“We need to get realistic about an aviation industry which has had its head in the clouds for too long on climate change and escaped any serious action to cut emissions. Governments should be making serious investment instead in public transport and low carbon infrastructure.

“Airport expansion in the South East of England should not and must not get off the ground. Sadly we will have to put up with another year’s PR propaganda and economic exaggerations from Heathrow and Gatwick.

ENDS

Notes to Editors

1. BBC: Airports expansion decision 'next year' http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-37692903

2. Friends of the Earth Scotland is
* Scotland's leading environmental campaigning organisation
* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland
* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 75 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups.
www.foe-scotland.org.uk