Waverley Borough Council is objecting to plans that would see a significant increase in flights at nearby Farnborough Airport.
The airport has applied to Rushmoor Borough Council for planning permission to increase the maximum number of annual aircraft movements at the airport from 50,000 to 70,000 per year. It also seeks to increase the weight category of the aircraft by 5,000kg, and to replace risk contour maps with Public Safety Zone maps.
The airport is primarily used by private jets and the proposals would see flights double during weekdays and bank holidays, dramatically increasing the amount of harmful greenhouse gasses that are released into the atmosphere.
In a formal response to the planning application, Waverley Borough Council expresses deep concern about the impact increased air traffic will have on Climate Change, the natural environment, protected wildlife, residents and local businesses.
Councillor Steve Williams, Waverley Borough Council Portfolio Holder for Environment and Sustainability said:
“Private jets are the most damaging form of air travel because they carry so few passengers. Waverley Borough Council has declared a Climate Emergency, and we are firmly committed to reducing the emissions that contribute to climate change. Farnborough Airport is located just five miles north of the Waverley border and these latest proposals are totally incompatible with what we’re trying to achieve.
“Our residents, businesses and wildlife would all be directly affected by an increase in light, air, and noise pollution because the airport’s flight path travels directly over the western part of our borough.
“We have three special protection areas specifically to safeguard rare bird species like the woodlark, nightjar, and Dartford warbler. It would be a travesty if these special creatures were driven from their habitat here by increased numbers of wealthy people jetting in.
“As a consequence, we are strongly urging Rushmoor Borough Council to reject this damaging planning application.”