Call for Moratorium on Melbourne Airport expansion

October 1, 2018 at 9:32 am 3 comments

Australia’s increasing aviation emissions – Source: The Elephant in the Sky

In September 2018 Climate Action Moreland joined the global Stay Grounded Network in working to limit aviation emissions, as authorised by our monthly meeting.

“We are strongly advocating for a moratorium on expansion of Melbourne airport infrastructure”, said John Englart, Convenor of local climate group Climate Action Moreland.

Melbourne Airport is the main domestic and international airport for the city and is located just to the north of Moreland municipality. The northern suburbs of Moreland are likely to be directly affected by the flight path of a proposed third runway.

“We are very concerned that the growth dynamic embedded within the airline industry and the private Melbourne Airport Corporation, supported by both the Victorian and Federal Governments, will lead directly to a massive increase in flights and an increase in aviation carbon emissions and climate impact.” said John Englart.

The Preliminary Draft Melbourne Airport Masterplan 2018 projects a near doubling of flights in 20 years from 34 million to more than 65 million passengers per year, and aircraft movements to increase from 238,000 to 384,000 movements per year, and freight also expected to almost double.

“Just greening airport infrastructure is no answer to limiting emissions from aviation. We need a moratorium on airport expansion to limit aviation emissions growth.” argued Englart.

Several climate scientists working in the area of shipping and aviation have called for a moratorium on airport expansion. Professor Bows-Larkin concluded at the end of her 2014 synthesis paper: All adrift: aviation, shipping, and climate change policy:

Ultimately, an uncomfortable and familiar conclusion for aviation remains: a moratorium on airport expansion at least in wealthy nations is one of the few options available to dampen growth rates within a timeframe befitting of the 2C target.

“Controlling and limiting carbon emissions is part of the duty of care of both the Federal Government and the State Government, and fully within their joint powers to enforce.” said Englart.

“Instead we see no debate on the threat of aviation emissions from either our Federal politicians or in State Parliament as part of climate policy.”

“The problem has been pushed to totally inadequate individual solutions like personal carbon offsets when it is a systemic problem with the normalisation of air travel.” argued Englart.

“The Airlines flight ticketing prices fail to reflect in any way the environmental cost or environmental damage being inflicted.” he said.

“The Federal Government, which has regulatory authority over domestic aviation emissions and airports, has failed to implement adequate policies in this area to reign in and limit the projected increase to aviation emissions.”

“Climate Action Moreland therefore calls for a moratorium on expansion of the Melbourne Airport under the Preliminary Draft Melbourne Airport Masterplan 2018.” concluded John Englart.

Submissions are currently open on the Preliminary draft Masterplan for Melbourne Airport. The Consultation period for submissions ends at 5pm on 8 October, 2018.

Note: John Englart attended as an NGO Observer for Climate Action Moreland and the Climate Action Network Australia (CANA) the United Nations Climate Change Conferences in Paris in 2015, Marrakech in 2016 and Bonn in 2017. He reported on shipping and aviation emissions at the Paris #COP21 conference.

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Entry filed under: aviation, media release, news, transport, Victorian Government. Tags: , , , .

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