Caroline backs court challenge over Heathrow third runway

Caroline Pidgeon has backed a High Court action launched by local authorities, green groups and residents' groups, challenging the government's decision to approve a third runway and sixth terminal at Heathrow Airport.

The coalition’s lawyers will be claiming in court that the consultation process was fundamentally flawed, that the decision to expand Heathrow is at odds with the UK’s overall climate change targets, and that the number of measures introduced to pass the plans through Parliament mean the expansion is fundamentally different to the proposals on which the Government consulted the public in 2007. The Transport Department’s lawyers are now claiming the new measures were not part of the decision to expand Heathrow.

If the coalition wins, the decision to proceed with the runway may be overturned.

Speaking on behalf of the local councils, Richmond Council Leader Serge Lourie said:
"Policy has been made on the hoof and since the former Transport Secretary announced his decision to the House of Commons in January 2009, in my view, any justification for the decision has steadily unravelled ...

"The Government’s environmental and economic plans don’t add up, and we are going to court to test them.”

Caroline Pidgeon, Lib Dem London Assembly Transport Spokesperson, commented:
"Plans for a third runway must be stopped. Lib Dems across London are united against these plans at every level"