Climate change is just a fad, says Ruth

Consultation paragraph 322

One week to go until the most sophisticated and cruel practical joke ever to be played on the two million plus residents of West London and Berkshire ends. The more I read the absurd consultation document the more I am convinced that they either can’t possibly be serious, or that they truly believe – like Mikey O’Leary - that climate change is just the current florescent angst of today’s youth.

A classic example of the DfT’s blinkered lunacy is the above paragraph from page 44 of the consultation which explains with glee what a third runway would bring. Read that last sentence again. Apparently the "unconstrained demand forecast" by 2030 would in fact be restricted, by unexplained "environmental constraints". What are these constraints that dare upset the analysts' demand forecasts?

Do they mean that people will voluntarily not fly because of environmental concerns? That airlines will seek to not fly as much as they would like? That government legislation on emissions will limit CO2 emissions and prevent flights? Or maybe that current regulations on local NOx levels will prohibit the airport from reaching the capacity it desires?

Who knows. Whatever the answer, it seems that these "environmental constraints" on the airport’s full use will miraculously disappear at some stage in the future – for, as Ruth says, these will only apply "in the early years".

So that’s all right then. In fact, once we’ve got that 4th runway we know BAA want, we can meet the whole 100% of the latent demand for passenger traffic at Heathrow – not just the measly 70% that this 3rd one will unleash.

Now wait a minute. What happens if the increasing concern about climate change globally and stronger legislation results in demand NOT increasing quite as much as the modellers once thought. What then? What if the level of demand, because of "environmental constraints", decreases so much that they don’t need this third runway, or the sixth terminal.

No, Ruth is clear, this environmental nonsense may be THE social movement of the moment, but it’s sure to pass.