Thank you to everyone who has contacted me about domestic flights and climate change.

We are in a climate emergency and green, efficient transport must be the future. A report by consumer group Which? found that despite the significantly higher carbon emissions, train fares are almost 50% more expensive on average than the same domestic UK route by plane.

Regulated train fares were increased again in 2021 and we will now see a 3.8% increase for 2022 as well. After a period of record low passenger numbers, we need to encourage people back on to trains, and this cannot be achieved when trains are unaffordable for many people.

The Committee on Climate Change has warned that aviation is likely to be the largest emitting sector in the UK by 2050, even with strong progress on technology and limiting demand. The Government has said it plans to meet its aviation net zero targets through technology, the development and growth of sustainable aviation fuels, as well as increasing efficiencies and methods to remove greenhouse gases.

Although technological solutions have potential, many such developments are in the future. Action needs to be taken now on emission reductions, and difficult decisions have to be made on capacity and demand management. Within this, I believe any consideration of airport expansion must meet strict tests on air quality, noise pollution, national economic benefit and our climate change obligations.

At the Budget and Spending Review in October, the Chancellor cut Air Passenger Duty (APD) on domestic flights just days before our country hosted a critical international climate summit. This move on APD is expected to result in a 3.5% increase in passenger journeys.

I disagree with the decision to cut APD for domestic flights. The Government needs to explain how its decision matches with its aim for net zero of domestic aviation by 2040.

Decarbonising our transport sector is one of the most pressing challenges we face, and we need more ambition and action from the Government if we are to meet net zero.

Campaign for Better Transport logo
Campaign for Better Transport logo
Link to Instagram Link to Twitter Link to YouTube Link to Facebook Link to LinkedIn Link to Snapchat Close Fax Website Location Phone Email Calendar Building Search