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LONDON —  The Supreme Court has breathed new life into plans for a third runway at Heathrow Airport.The scheme was previously blocked by the Court of Appeal, which said the government’s airport strategy didn’t meet up-to-date UK climate targets.

But the Supreme Court has ruled the strategy was legitimately based on previous, less stringent, climate targets at the time it was agreed. The firm behind Heathrow can now seek planning permission for the runway.

But it still faces major obstacles, including having to persuade a public inquiry of the case for expansion. And if planning inspectors approve the scheme, the government will still have the final say.

A Heathrow spokesman called the decision to lift the ban "the right result for the country".

"Only by expanding the UK's hub airport can we connect all of Britain to all of the growing markets of the world, helping to create hundreds of thousands of jobs in every nation and region of our country.

"Demand for aviation will recover from Covid-19, and the additional capacity at an expanded Heathrow will allow Britain as a sovereign nation to compete for trade and win against our rivals in France and Germany."

The business coalition Back Heathrow said it would boost the UK once it stops following EU trading rules on 31 December.

“It is a huge moment for the UK as it moves towards an uncertain Brexit, but now with the confidence that international trade could be boosted by additional capacity at the country’s only hub airport," said executive director Parmjit Dhanda.

“We believe this news reflects a unity of purpose between the highest court in the land and our parliament – which has already delivered a majority of 296 for sustainable expansion at Heathrow,” he added.

Via (BBC)

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