Councillors from Bath & North East Somerset Council are to meet with their counterparts from North Somerset Council to outline their opposition to the proposed expansion of Bristol Airport.
Bath & North East Somerset Council was consulted as neighbouring planning authority in relation to the planning application submitted by Bristol Airport to North Somerset Council.
Bath & North East Somerset Council’s objection cites highways issues, which have been assessed as grounds to object based on current planning policies.
In addition Councillor Tim Ball, cabinet member for Housing, Planning and Economic Development and Councillor Sarah Warren, cabinet member for Climate Emergency, wrote to North Somerset Council leaders urging them to take account of the Climate Emergency, and the urgent need to cut carbon emissions when deciding whether to grant the airport permission to expand.
Councillor Ball said: “When Bath & North East Somerset Council declared a Climate Emergency earlier this year, it included a commitment to provide the necessary leadership to enable carbon neutrality across the district by 2030 and a commitment to oppose the expansion of Bristol Airport as incompatible with our carbon neutrality goal.
“From a planning perspective, as a consultee, we have submitted an objection on highways grounds, expressing our concern about the very real impact the increase in airport traffic will have on our nearby rural communities.
“However, we want to ensure that councillors in North Somerset do not interpret this as the sole basis of our concern about the expansion and therefore wrote to the leader of North Somerset Council and the council’s cabinet member for Planning and Transport asking for an urgent meeting to discuss the issue.”
Councillor Sarah Warren added: “The proposed expansion of Bristol Airport won’t just affect North Somerset.
“Carbon pollution from aviation is one of the fastest-growing sources of the greenhouse gas emissions which drive global climate change.
“Increasing the capacity of Bristol Airport and therefore the number of aircraft flying in and out will exacerbate the problem and that goes against the commitment that we, and indeed North Somerset Council, have made to tackle climate change in declaring a Climate Emergency.
“I’m delighted our counterparts in North Somerset have agreed to meet with us and hope they will listen to our concerns and take them on board in making their decision.”
Bath & North East Somerset Council will soon be laying out its approach to the Climate Emergency Declaration in more detail, including the commitment to oppose Bristol Airport’s proposed expansion.