§ Mr. Watts
We are today beginning consultation on raising the limit on air transport movements at Stansted. This follows the application by BAA plc, the airport operator, to increase the limit to 150,000 movements each year. The Department is seeking views on this option, as well as on an alternative option of increasing the limit to 120,000 movements a year.
When planning permission was granted for the development of Stansted, an upper limit was placed on the number of air transport movements each year to ensure that the local infrastructure could cope with air traffic growth. We now need to decide whether it is time to increase that upper limit, and if so by how much, taking account of local interests and without unduly restricting the airport's ability to grow.
The Department will be seeking the views of airlines, local authorities and other interested parties. Copies of the consultation document have been placed in the Library.