Government will not review the Airports National Policy Statement, on…

government-will-not-review-the-airports-national-policy-statement,-on…

Government will not review the Airports National Policy Statement, on…

Government will not review the Airports National Policy Statement, on any of the challenge grounds
2021-09-10 07:43:00
The Government had the option of reviewing the Airports National Policy Statement (ANPS) after the legal challenges, which took place during 2019 and 2020. One key issue of the challenges was the impact on the UK’s climate targets of allowing Heathrow to increase its carbon emissions by up to 50%. Now the DfT has decided it will not review the ANPS, so it continues to be the underlying policy through which Heathrow could expand. The airport still has to go through the Development Consent Order (DCO) process, to get approval for a 3rd runway.  Grant Shapps, Transport Secretary of State, says that even though the UK now has a target of 78% cuts in CO2 emissions by 2035 and international aviation should be included in that target (compared to 1990 levels) and “considers that it is not possible to conclude properly that any of the policy set out in the ANPS would have been materially different had these circumstances been anticipated at the time of designation [June 2018].” The overall impact of Heathrow expansion, combined with expansion of other airports, will be considered by the Planning Inspectorate at the DCO stage.  It appears an opportunity to reduce UK aviation CO2 emissions has been missed, and government will do as little as possible on the issue. .Tweet     Part of the letter sent by the DfT to people who had asked for the ANPS to be reviewed in the light of changes to climate policy since 2018. Dear xx DECISION ON REQUESTS TO REVIEW THE AIRPORTS NATIONAL POLICYSTATEMENT UNDER THE PLANNING ACT 2008 I am writing to you as an individual or organisation that has requested that the Secretary of State for Transport review the Airports National Policy Statement (“ANPS”) under section 6 of the Planning Act 2008. The Secretary of State has carefully considered all review requests in accordance with the requirements of the Planning Act 2008 and this letter communicates his decision. Having taken account of the factors in section 6(3) and (4) of the Planning Act 2008 and the section 10(2) objective of contributing to the achievement of sustainable development (and in particular the desirability of mitigating and adapting to climate change – see section 10(3)), the Secretary of State has decided that it is not appropriate to review the ANPS at this time. As to the main matters raised in the review requests: Climate change The Secretary of State has decided that it is not appropriate to review the ANPS on the basis of climate change or carbon policy at this time. He considers that changes to HM Government’s and the Climate Change Committee’s position on climate change (including the target of net zero by 2050 now enshrined in the revised Climate Change Act 2008, the CCC’s aviation specific advice following its report on net zero, the announcement by the Government that it would target a 68% reduction in UK emissions by 2030 compared to 1990 levels pursuant to Article 4 of the Paris Agreement, and the inclusion of international aviation emissions in the sixth carbon budget and its target to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 compared to 1990 levels), as well as Parliament’s declaration of a “climate emergency”, represent a significant and unforeseen change in circumstances that was not anticipated at the time of designation of the ANPS. However, he considers that it is not possible to conclude properly that any of the policy set out in the ANPS would have been materially different had these circumstances been anticipated at the time of designation. He considers that the question of whether or not to review the ANPS should be considered again after the Government’s Jet Zero Strategy (“JZS”) has been finalised following a consultation which was launched on 14 July 2021. This sets out proposed policies that will be needed for aviation to meet net zero emissions by 2050. These policies will influence the level of aviation emissions the sector can emit and the cost of flying in the future, both of which are relevant

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