photo of planes flying near Heathrow

Heathrow's third runway Why we should stop it

Why a monster airport is a bigger problem

Plans for a third runway at Heathrow are highly controversial. The airport is already one of the biggest single sources of greenhouse gases in the UK, and the proposal would lead to around 700 extra flights per day.

At a time when the government should be investing in sustainable transport to address the climate emergency, another runway would lock us into a high-carbon infrastructure.

Many local people don't want a third runway – and the wider environmental impacts will be huge.

More planes, more traffic, more pollution - and who wins?

1. We can’t stop climate change by building runways 

Heathrow is already the biggest single source of greenhouse gases in the UK.

A third runway will all but blow our chances of meeting our targets for cutting emissions.

2. More flights for the few 

Just 15% of the UK’s population take the majority (70%) of all flights.

A bigger airport would mainly serve the interests of frequent flyers.

3. Filthy air, more noise 

Already local people have to endure 1,300 noisy planes landing and taking off at Heathrow every day.

Air pollution locally is way above legal limits.

4. The economic argument doesn’t stack up 

The government claims a third runway will be good for the economy – but there are no guarantees.

And they haven’t factored in the true costs of climate change.

5. Transport on the wrong track 

A bigger climate-wrecking airport is a massive distraction.

We urgently need to invest in our rail and public transport networks – they’re simply not good enough for 21st century Britain.

Get the latest from our campaigns, including our fight against the third runway

Many local people don't want a bigger Heathrow

Meet the local campaigners working to protect their communities from airport expansion.

Landing a legal challenge to Heathrow expansion

Friends of the Earth believes the decision to allow a third runway is unlawful because it

  • ignores the impact of all those extra planes and traffic on the climate
  • ignores the huge consequences for future generations.

So we’re taking the government to court to get the decision overturned. We’ve won the right to a full hearing in March 2019.

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