Scottish Liberal Democrat Leader Willie Rennie has today called on the SNP government to “see sense” and immediately withdraw its longstanding support for Heathrow’s expansion after it was revealed that the extra flights to Scotland alone would pump out an additional 600,000 tonnes of emissions by 2040.
A freedom of information request published on the Scottish Government website has revealed a third runway would result in 75,660 extra flights between Scotland and Heathrow, generating 599,578 tonnes of additional emissions by 2040 – more than the annual emissions of the whole Central African Republic.
Scottish Liberal Democrats previously revealed that the SNP Government didn’t even assess the impact on Scotland’s environment of Heathrow expansion before it controversially announced its support and signed a contract with the airport.
Willie Rennie commented:
“Heathrow expansion is environmental vandalism. The SNP must see sense and withdraw their support.
“We now know that the extra Scottish flights alone would release a staggering 600,000 tonnes of emissions into the environment. That’s more than the Central African Republic’s emissions for an entire year.
“The First Minister has been stubborn in her support for the third runway and her MPs only abstained at Westminster because they wanted more guarantees around these extra flights, not because they were worried about the climate.
“Liberal Democrats have already helped persuade the SNP to scrap their plans to slash aviation taxes. Ministers admitted that adding tens of thousands of tonnes of extra emissions was incompatible with declaring a climate emergency, so why is Heathrow expansion any different?
“Heathrow is already the single biggest emitter of emissions in the UK. It’s disgraceful for the SNP to continue to back its expansion now that they have belatedly assessed the environmental impact. They must immediately heed the evidence, change their tune and withdraw their support.”