12:15PM, Wednesday 08 August 2018
The legal battle against the expansion of Heathrow Airport has been launched.
Lawyers acting for a consortium of local authorities including the Royal Borough issued judicial review proceedings in the High Court yesterday.
The grounds of the challenge are on air quality, inadequate environmental assessment, climate change, surface access and breach of the habitats directive.
It also accuses the Secretary of State for Transport MP Chris Grayling of leading a ‘flawed consultation process’.
Cllr Simon Dudley (Con, Riverside) said: “We promised we would hold the Government to account and that is exactly what we are doing.
“The process surrounding their support for a third runway at Heathrow has been flawed and failed to take into account the environmental impact this project would have on our residents and the tens of thousands of others who live in the airport’s shadow.
“This judicial review seeks to shine a light on the flaws we’ve been highlighting and halt this damaging expansion project.”
The legal challenge will see the council line up alongside the London Boroughs of Hillingdon, Wandsworth, Richmond, Hammersmith and Fulham, Greenpeace and the Mayor of London.
Last month, the council announced it had set aside a further £100,000 to cover legal costs in its fight against a third runway.
But Parmjit Dhanda, executive director at Back Heathrow, said the decision of MPs to vote for the expansion of Heathrow should be respected.
He said: “These councils have chosen to spend over £1 million of taxpayers’ money over the past decade on campaign groups and expensive lawyers.
“It’s time they respected the views of local people, businesses, unions and the democratic will of Parliament.”
Environmental campaigners Friends of the Earth will also be contesting the legal basis of the Government’s decision in the High Court.
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