Bad news for those of us who care about our future. Today Stop Stansted Expansion, supported by the Woodland Trust, Greenpeace, CPRE, FOE and others lost their High Court appeal against the Government’s decision to increase passenger numbers at Stansted.
High Court judge Sir Thayne Forbes reportedly said SSE’s criticisms of the way Geoff Hoon made this decision were “unjustified and without substance“. One of the main criticisms made by those supporting the appeal was that the Government had not taken into account the climate change impacts of the proposed increase in passenger numbers. If this has no substance then what does?
SSE Campaign Director Carol Barbone said: “This High Court action was never simply about winning or losing. Our primary concern was to ensure that our main battle against a second Stansted runway was not prejudiced by the wording of the original decision. However, today’s ruling seems to make matters even less clear than they were before. That is why we are seeking leave to appeal.”
It does make you shake your head in disbelief when you see decisions like this being made. This is in the same week when we were warned:
- The Amazon rainforest could shrink by 85% due to climate change
- Climate change could render half of the worlds inhabited areas unliveable; and
- Scientists and economists warned that politicians hadn’t grasped the issue of climate change.
Instead of waking up and actually showing some leadership on this Geoff Hoon and his colleagues are burying their heads in the sand and seem to believe that someone else, somewhere else will be able to solve the issue. Well I look forward to seeing this solution, but we need action from our “leaders” if we’re going to make any headway.
Meanwhile the public inquiry into the second runway at Stansted has been put back until after the Competition Commission reports on its recommendations which will probably include a requirement for BAA to sell the airport.