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World Development Movement



Flights from Heathrow’s third runway will emit same amount of CO2 as Kenya

21 November 2007

According to figures released today (22 Nov) by the World Development Movement, to coincide with the launch of the government’s consultation process on the third runway at Heathrow, flights from the proposed runway will release as much carbon as Kenya’s total carbon emissions every year.

On Climate Change:

Benedict Southworth, director of the World Development Movement said:

“The number of flights leaving Heathrow will nearly double as a result of this expansion, creating a huge increase in harmful CO2 emissions that contribute to climate change. The fact that flights from this new runway will emit the same annual amount of CO2 emissions as Kenya does in a year is appalling.

“The government says that it is serious about tackling climate change; but in the same breath says it wants to expand the aviation sector: the UK’s fastest growing source of CO2 emissions. The reality is that most people in the developing world are too poor to fly, but they will be hit worst by climate change.

On the European Emissions Trading Scheme:

Benedict Southworth, director of the World Development Movement said:

“The government’s claim that increases in emissions from aviation will be dealt with though the EU Emissions Trading Scheme is a red herring. There are so many loopholes in the scheme, it is virtually meaningless. There is a great deal of evidence already which predicts that the price of carbon is too low and that it will have little effect in reducing emissions from aviation.”

“The World Development Movement is calling on the government to ensure that its previous and present commitments to tackling poverty are not undone by ignoring the impact of emissions from aviation on climate change.”


For comment or interview please contact:

Kate Blagojevic
Press officer, World Development Movement
0207 820 4900/4913, 07711 875 345, Email:

Notes to Editors