Following the news that Heathrow's third runway has been approved Sam Bowman, Executive Director of the ASI, asks why not approve Gatwick too? He commented:
"The approval of a third runway for Heathrow, seven years after it was first mooted by the then-government, is long overdue good news. It’s a big point in this government’s favour that it has finally gone ahead with the plans, and a sign that it might be willing to push ahead with other important projects that local NIMBYs don’t like.
"We shouldn't feel too sorry for local residents, no matter how vocal they are. Their house prices will have been lower to reflect the inconvenience of living in the flight path, compared to similar houses in quieter areas and, for anyone who has bought a house in the past four decades, also to reflect the probability of a third runway being built. So the trade-off for them is cheaper housing in exchange for a bit more ambient noise from aircraft.
"There’s no real reason that Gatwick shouldn’t also be given approval for an extra runway too, though. Britain should be as open to air passenger traffic as possible, being one of the world’s premier tourist and business travel destinations. The more runways the better. It’s also important now that the government gets the Border Force’s house in order to be able to deal with the increase in passenger numbers that the third runway will deliver, which means modernising its equipment and processes along the lines detailed in a recent Adam Smith Institute report."
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