Firmly against expansion
1st November 2017 – Crawley Observer
The announcement today [October 25th] that Gatwick will seek expansion with or without Heathrow expansion is not a surprise to CAGNE, Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions.
Reasons why Gatwick cant be permitted to expand:
The Rail Can’t –
- Even after completion of the Thameslink improvement, the South East Route states there will be unacceptable standing from as far out as Haywards Heath and by 2024 serious capacity problems overall (SRS pp39-40). By 2018,with or without a new runway, the SRS states (p52) that Gatwick passengers will be subject to significant congestion and standing on trains. Page references from South East Route: Sussex Area Route Study September 2015.
- The £120.5m upgrade of Gatwick Airport train station – Gatwick apparently is only contributing 7.5% towards the total cost and the new platform benefits Gatwick.
- Gatwick 2017 has set about lobbying the government for funding for over £2bn rail improvement. The Windmill Junction on the Brighton Mainline at East Croydon will cause years of delays for commuters and is only planned for natural growth of passengers in the south east not for Gatwick growth.
The Road Can’t –
- If the Government purse pays for Gatwick’s 2nd runway infrastructure, how much will it leave for the Northern Powerhouse infrastructure?
The Gatwick Brexit effect
Talk of tax on European flights, airlines moving to Europe, Gatwick is still reliant upon European business. A debate will be heard on the subject ofBrexit and aviation on 30th October.
On average 89% of Gatwick’s flights are to European destinations, growth is questionable outside of Europe as it is dependent upon leisure travel, those that are badly impacted by recessions and the value of the pound dropping against the Euro. Gatwick boasts of Norwegian Airlines growth but Moody, for 2017 has downgraded them, so where is Gatwick’s growth coming from
Did you know that the Civil Aviation Authority say 58% More Brits fly out of than foreigners fly in. [i] So that’s £ out of the UK not into the UK purse!
Impact on regional growth
Flying from a local airport, working close to your job reduces carbon emissions and so enables local prosperity and reduces the impact on climate change.
Southampton, Bournemouth airport, to name just two, could be badly impacted by Gatwick growth as airlines are enticed by low landing fees, resulting in a decline of regional airports forcing workers onto the roads to find jobs at other airports, so how does this help emissions, road congestion and climate change?
If Heathrow build a new runway and so does Gatwick what will happen to the northern powerhouse if climate change targets have to be reduced?
- Southampton passenger numbers are expected to grow from 1.84 million in 2005 to 3.05 million per year by 2015, to 6 million per year in 2030.
- Manchester Airport details 3m, July 2017 saw an increase in aircraft movements by 6% ,with more than 20,000 take offs and landings at the UK’s global gateway in the North. Cargo also increased last month with 12,059 tonnes carried, an increase of 21% which sees the annual tonnage rise to 120,513.
- East Midlands Airport grew by 3.1% to serve 588,000 passengers in July and Bournemouth Airport grew 1.2% to 81,000.
“surface access is not their problem” says Gatwick, but it is for the communities, far and wide as well as local authorities lack of budgets as do the Government.
Recent monitoring tests have shown an area north of Gatwick exceeds the EU legal limit.
Whilst this is almost entirely due to road traffic it is very similar to the situation around Heathrow but without any alternative to take the cars/freight from the roads – and this is now – so it would seem deterioration of air quality is highly likely for taxpayers around Gatwick Airport so sound reasoning says it cant be allowed to grow.
CAGNE contact details: