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GLA calls for government to cut aircraft emissions

Greater London Authority submits response to government aviation strategy calling for reduction in airport-related traffic and use of green fuels

The Greater London Authority has called on the government to reduce airport traffic and encourage use of ‘green fuels’ in aeroplanes to help improve air quality.

The recommendations came from the GLA’s Health and Environment Committee in its response to the government’s consultation on the Draft Aviation Policy Framework submitted on Wednesday (October 31).

The GLA is calling for measures to reduce traffic around airports

The draft policy framework sets out the government’s proposed strategy for aviation, including the steps it will look to take to reduce emissions from the aviation sector.

In its response, the GLA has detailed a number of proposed measures, intended to prevent future aviation strategy from aggravating air quality in London.

The Committee also raised concerns about the inadequacy of existing and proposed transport measures to mitigate air pollution levels, and recommended increased use of aircraft using lower emission fuels and reducing airport-related road traffic.

In putting together its response, the Committee examined air quality around Heathrow, where areas are already in breach of European Union air quality limits.

It claimed that in order to ensure that air quality was not worsened in these areas and that the target to reduce emissions by at least 80% by 2050 was not missed, long term legally binding targets for aviation would be necessary.

Murad Qureshi, chair of the Greater London Authority’s Health and Environment Committee, said: “Tackling the impacts of aviation is a big issue, both globally and for the people who live close to airports and bear the brunt of the detrimental effects. They could be in danger of serious health consequences.

“As politicians and experts gear up to discuss various options for airport expansion, there are understandably concerns that more runways and airports will bring increased noise and emissions which will seriously affect local residents’ quality of life.

“It is absolutely critical that the Government gets the policy right and develops the best available advice for airport operators. We urge the Government to take on board these concerns.”

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