Realistic cost of carbon emissions likely to make airport expansion…

realistic-cost-of-carbon-emissions-likely-to-make-airport-expansion…

Realistic cost of carbon emissions likely to make airport expansion…

Realistic cost of carbon emissions likely to make airport expansion plans unviable
2022-01-28 11:04:00
The government’s new higher, more realistic, carbon values – putting a cost on carbon emissions from aviation – are likely to make many airport expansion schemes non-viable. The carbon value was increased, in an attempt to move towards “net zero” by 2050. The anticipated economic benefits will be drastically cut, if carbon emissions (and their negative impact on society and the planet) are costed properly. The planning law is currently inadequate and ambiguous, but campaigners hope planning authorities will take greater account of the impact of emissions on the economic case of proposed projects. The New Economics Foundation has found that the economic cases for 6 of the 7 major airport expansion proposals — including London’s Heathrow and Gatwick — use either the old carbon value, or none at all.  As yet, planning law in England does not explicitly require carbon values to be used. But the relevant planning authority can demand they are included in applications.  If the anticipated outcome of Bristol’s appeal gave a “clear line” on carbon values, it is very likely to inform other airport expansion decisions. .Tweet   Higher cost of carbon emissions threatens UK airport expansion plans Campaigners and lawyers expect greater scrutiny of larger projects after government tripled value of official benchmark By Camilla Hodgson and Philip Georgiadis (Financial Times) 27.1.2022 Tougher planning rules designed to help curb climate change are threatening the viability of UK airport expansion plans, which have become a battleground for campaigners who oppose growth of the aviation industry. New runways or terminal buildings are increasingly at risk from legal challenges on environmental grounds, according to lawyers, with one arcane metric offering activists a potential new weapon: the rising cost of carbon emissions. Campaigners are hoping that planning authorities will take greater account of the impact of emissions on the economic case of proposed projects. The government in September more than tripled the so-called “carbon value” — the official benchmark that puts a price on the emissions associated with a scheme — to reflect the country’s net zero 2050 commitment. Yet the economic cases for six of the seven major airport expansion proposals — including London’s Heathrow and Gatwick — use either the old value, or none at all, according to the New Economics Foundation, a leftwing think-tank. The NEF, which is highly critical of airport expansion on climate grounds, warned in a recent report that the increase in carbon values — the central price rose from £77 to £245 per tonne of carbon — meant the environmental impact of these projects had been “dramatically underestimated”. Sarah Fitzpatrick, a partner and head of the planning team at law firm Norton Rose Fulbright, said the aviation sector’s role as a polluter was coming under greater scrutiny. “Assessment of carbon values, and non-CO2 based emissions that contribute to climate change, are likely to be very important when promoters of airport expansion proposals are assessing their projects and seeking consent.” As yet, planning law in England does not explicitly require carbon values to be used. But the relevant planning authority can demand they are included in applications. Estelle Dehon, an environmental specialist at Cornerstone Barristers, said the increase in carbon values was “

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