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Autumn Conference: Time for rethink on aviation policy

Catherine spoke during a debate on aviation policy at the Liberal Democrat party conference in Brighton. Here is what she said:

key_fairertaxfairersociety.pngTim Yeo thinks its ok to bung another runway onto the sprawling Tarmac that is Heathrow.

That airport already pumps out pollution and noise affecting hundreds of thousands of people, but what the heck!?

It would be funny if it were not so serious

Let's check this out. Tim Yeo is the head of the parliamentary climate change committee AND a former environment minister.

Yeo boldly claims "we could cover the whole of Surrey with runways and not increase emissions by a single kilogram".

Clearly, planes are getting cleaner and that has not been easy task to achieve.

So the answer is to destroy all that good work? I think not.

Make no mistake expanding Heathrow without carefully considering all the alternatives and options is a genuine threat to our environment.

Tories preach about raising the quality of life for future generations, but then they toy with the ideas that will leave future generations with catestrophic disasters to clear up.

The lib Dems are the only party to be seriously contemplating a sustainable aviation policy, looking at its impacts on all our communities.

We know that short haul flights are the most damaging way to travel, with the highest CO2 emmissions, placed at exactly the worst place.

Yet we need to retain our business connections to our trading partners in the furthest places of the world.

That is why I support Julian's policy motion that pays particular attention to making the very best use of UK capacity for the long term.

As MEP for the south east I probably shouldn't say this, but the south east is over heated, over crowded and overflown.

Heathrow is an extremely badly located airport as Julian says.

It is time to rethink over reliance on London and the south and think uk as a whole. In European terms other parts of the uk are just as viable to become the long haul hubs. Especially as high speed rail links move north linking the uk with the rest of Europe.

It is about time Birmingham, Newcastle or Manchester airports recieved the investment they deserve.

Yes we understand the importance of aviation in a growing economy, but we also understand that expanding London will mean missing carbon reduction targets as well as having a severe impact on the life's of people in London and the south east.

Please support this motion.

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