Environment chiefs speak out on Heathrow

Brown dismayed

Another week, another couple of eminent critics of the Heathrow expansion plans take their turns to speak up. This time it was Stavros Dimas, EU environment chief, and Lord Smith, the new boss of the Environment Agency and a former Labour Minister speaking up for reason and scientific opinion.

Smith told The Independent that building a third runway would be "a mistake" because of pollution and noise and said he'd keep telling the government that's how it is. Meanwhile Dimas announced that a third runway would "significantly" breach European air pollution guidelines, which will soon become law.

"Technical reports underpinning the Heathrow expansion suggest that nitrogen limit values near Heathrow will be significantly exceeded in 2010, the year in which those limit values become mandatory, and that this will be the case even after 2015," he said.

You can almost picture Gordon Brown with his hands over his ears shouting "la la la la la la" because he just doesn't want to know...