Heathrow's third runway grounded, but it might still take off
Dallas and Chicago have seven. Amsterdam has six. Los Angeles has four. It's a fact of life - big airports have plenty of runways. Unless you live in the UK, that is; after years of protests, councils, residents and environmental groups have won a High Court battle blocking plans for a third runway at Heathrow.
Labour MP John McDonnell, who has led the campaign against the expansion of the airport for three decades, said: "In essence this judgment means that the game is up for a third runway at Heathrow and I am calling upon the government to accept the inevitable and lift this threat to my community. What we need now is a sensible approach to developing a sustainable transport policy based upon high-speed rail."
Quite how a high-speed rail link is going to get you to Orlando next Winter remains to be seen. The coalition had argued that there was no evidence to support the government's claim that there will be enough public transport to serve the new runway, and that "economic and environmental" considerations had fundamentally changed since 2003, when expansion of the airport was set out in a government white paper. Mention was also made that the government's approval of the runway was flawed by "conspicuously unfair" public consultations.
It may just be a case of delaying the inevitable, however; if the government can show it can still meet long-term climate change targets after the addition of a third runway, there's every chance of it happening. Until then, I don't want to see a single protester anywhere near a budget airline or a last minute sunshine break to Magaluf. They're all barred.