On 5 June 2018, the Government presented its final proposal for an airports national policy statement (NPS), which outlined its support for plans to deliver a new runway at Heathrow, with a target date of 2026.
The Opposition has always argued that any airport expansion must meet four tests - that it can effectively deliver on capacity demands, that noise and air quality issues are fully addressed, that the UK's climate change obligations are met in full and that growth across the country is supported. I believe we owe it to future generations to ensure that these factors are dealt with in exactly the right way.
Whilst I recognise the need for additional airport capacity in the south east of England, after careful consideration, I do not believe that these tests have been met. I am of the opinion that Heathrow expansion is incompatible with environmental targets and cannot be achieved without unacceptable impacts on local residents.
I believe that we must support vital investment in our country's transport infrastructure, but every investment must be tested on whether it provides real value for money and sustainability. Unfortunately, I believe that a third runway at Heathrow fails this test.
Although I voted against the National Policy Statement on Monday 25th June, the motion was passed by 415 votes to 119.