On Tuesday this week Windsor’s MP, Adam Afriyie, co-sponsored a Bill in Parliament highlighting the issue of aircraft noise.
Adam Afriyie, who has campaigned against a 3rd Runway at Heathrow since he became MP for Windsor 11 years ago, was one of 11 MPs co-sponsoring a Ten Minute Rule Bill brought forward by Dr Tania Mathias MP calling on the Government to amend the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
The proposed bill will reclassify noise from aircraft as a ‘statutory nuisance’ giving those under the flightpaths a formal means of redress. It was passed and will receive its Second Reading on 20th January 2017.
The Conservative MP said: “I was proud to co-sponsor this Bill today. Noise pollution from aircraft is a blight on many local communities, especially in Windsor, and has been ignored for too long.
“With a decision on airport expansion due within the next year it is more important than ever to give due consideration to the effect of aircraft noise on health.”
Heathrow Airport’s noise footprint currently affects 725,500 people, more than any other airport in Europe. Despite this, the noise pollution affecting those people is not recorded as a ‘statutory nuisance’.
This Ten Minute Rule Bill would correct the anomaly whereby other forms of transport such as a motorway or a high speed rail link, are counted as a ‘statutory nuisance’ but aircraft noise is not.
Whilst acknowledging that airport expansion is important for the entire national economy Mr Afriyie said that Heathrow was ‘simply in the wrong place.’
“Whilst we need a new runway in the south east, Heathrow’s proximity to London means that expansion there will affect more than 20 times as many people than an additional runway at Gatwick.
“I hope that the Government will look at the evidence that we can achieve similar connectivity with an additional runway at Gatwick with a far smaller fiscal and environmental cost and come to a fast and firm decision to back expansion at Gatwick.”
The British airport with the second largest footprint, Manchester, affects 94,000. 28% of all people affected by aircraft noise across Europe live under the Heathrow flight paths.
Note to editors
1. Adam Afriyie is the Prime Minister’s Trade Envoy to Ghana.
2. He has a strong background in science, technology and innovation.
4. He was shadow Minister for Science from 2007-2010 and has a background in the information services and technology sector.
5. Adam Afriyie has campaigned against a 3rd Runway at Heathrow since he became an MP in 2005 and has written at length on Heathrow. To see his full record please see here.
6. A transcript of the speech by Dr Tania Mathias MP can be found here.