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Aviation: Exhaust Emissions

Volume 486: debated on Tuesday 13 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport with reference to the answer of 19 November 2008, Official Report, columns 480-81W, on aviation: exhaust emissions, (1) whether his forecast was based on an assumption that the growth of aviation after 2030 will be limited by capacity constraints; (246322)

(2) what capacity constraints are likely to limit the growth of aviation in the UK after 2030;

(3) what the figures would be if it were assumed that between 2030 and 2050 aviation were to continue to grow at the same rate as forecast up to 2030.

The Department for Transport’s “UK Air Passenger Demand and CO2 Forecasts 2007” report explains that forecast growth in air passenger demand will be limited by UK airport capacity constraints (page 11), and by the maturing of the air travel market (page 19).

The same report, on page 36, shows the terminal and capacity assumptions used in the forecasts. By 2050, it is forecast that all modelled airports in the South East and some others elsewhere in the UK will become capacity constrained.

The 2003 Air Transport White Paper supported the building of two new runways in the South East. On this basis, assuming that the pre-2030 growth rate continued to 2050 would not present a feasible view of the world post-2030, and therefore the Department for Transport does not have a CO2 emissions forecast based on these assumptions.