Heathrow Airport: Cabinet Approves New Runway Plan – BBC

Ministers have described their backing for a new runway at Heathrow Airport as an “historic moment” for the UK.

The cabinet signed off the plans after they were approved by the government's economic sub-committee, which is chaired by Prime Minister Theresa May.

Transport Secretary Chris Grayling announced £2.6bn in compensation for residents and noise abatement measures.

Environmental groups oppose the plan, which Mr Grayling says will only happen if air quality commitments are met.

“The time for action is now,” Mr Grayling told MPs, who will be asked to vote on the expansion plan by 11 July.

He insisted the decision was being taken in the national interest and would benefit the whole of the UK – with 15% of new landing slots at the airport “facilitating” regional connectivity.

He said the £14bn runway, which could be completed by 2026, would be funded entirely privately – but MPs warned that taxpayers would end up footing the bill for billions in road improvements and other upgrades and warned that the UK's carbon emission targets would be threatened by the increase in traffic around the enlarged airport.

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