Pollution from Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) has plummeted due to the lockdown. NO2 is one of the key pollutants, whose levels regularly breach European and UK health standards. (The other main pollutant is ‘small particulates’ or PM).
There has been a lot of discussion about how we will and should come out of the pandemic. Many people have come to realise that there are more important things than growing the economy and competing with each other. There has also been a realisation of how essential governments are in protecting lives and livelihoods. And how drastic action is possible, if there is the political will.
Friends of the Earth and others won a landmark court case in February 2020 on the grounds of climate change, but Heathrow has shamefully appealed the decision.
This is what Greenpeace says:
The government keeps saying it is guided by the science when it comes to coronavirus. So why does it ignores the science, evidence and logic when it comes to aviation and climate change? See latest revelation.
For general comment (very brief) see Home Page
The government has launched a consultation on transport and climate change.
UK Airline bosses to ask for £7.5 billion bailout to survive Coronavirus.
The Court of Appeal has found in favour of the campaigners – including Friends of the Earth – who took the government to court over the third runway. The key argument was that the government in its National Policy Statement (NPS) had failed to take into account the ‘Paris Agreement’. The Paris Agreement is an international agreement, signed by UK, to reduce CO2 emissions to zero by 2050 and thereby prevent catastrophic climate change.
More and more people now realise that massive increases in flying and a third runway at Heathrow are inconsistent with the UK’s and worldwide climate targets.