Tuesday, 26 June 2018 04:21



The Scottish National Party has confirmed they will abstain on a vote tonight on Heathrow’s third runway, after the UK government failed to provide sufficient guarantees over any benefits they claimed it would bring to Scotland.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling failed to provide detail over which Scotland – London routes would benefit from Public Service Obligations (PSO), or which Scottish airports would be protected under PSOs to ensure they benefited from the new runway. 

In addition, the letter from the UK Government to Scottish MPs on 21 June failed to meet the ambitions set by the Scottish Government and the government has not set out the climate impact of increased aviation and how they would address it with concerns a key report was held back in order to ‘fix’ the vote for the third runway.

The SNP’s Transport spokesperson Alan Brown MP said a request to meet with Mr Grayling ahead of the vote was not followed through and a letter outlining key concerns remains unanswered.

Commenting, Alan Brown MP said:

“Chris Grayling has completely failed to make the case for Scotland – SNP MPs could not vote for a third runway at Heathrow with no guarantees of the benefits. 

“The SNP wants the best deal for Scotland. Any Heathrow expansion plan must provide significant benefits to our economy and connectivity, yet Grayling failed to provide any real assurances- or meet with me to give any guarantees.
“The UK government’s decision to delay a report on Heathrow emissions is also cause for concern.
"While the SNP has long worked with Heathrow on their plans for expansion and we will continue to work with them on the benefits that could be delivered, the UK government has let Scotland down. The Tories can't be trusted to keep their own promises, never mind the promises they make to others.
“With Airbus and airlines set to depart Brexit Britain, a third runway could well find itself in a ghost airport - the UK government should be turning their attention to getting the best possible deal when the UK leaves the EU which includes staying in the customs union and single market.”

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