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Stop Bristol Airport Expansion! (SBAE) is an alliance comprised of the following groups:

cpreBristol Friends of the Earth

Read more about the SBAE alliance

All content © Stop Bristol Airport Expansion, 2009.


100 months

Easyjet Initiative Dangerously Misses the Point

Easyjet have just launched a national campaign demanding that Government takes a more ‘intelligent approach’ to aviation. However the approach Easyjet suggests would do nothing to halt airport expansion or the increase in flights.

The Easyjet initiative comes hot on the heels of the IPCC’s latest scientific report stating that serious damage to the environment caused by climate change is already escalating. Reducing CO2 emissions from flights has never been more urgent.

Easyjet is calling for the Government to encourage airlines to fly greener aircraft by levying an environmental tax on the ‘oldest, dirtiest’ aircraft and removing the burden of tax from passengers by abandoning air passenger duty.

Although taxing aircraft on their CO2 emissions seems commendable, increasing the number of ‘cleaner’ planes from the current levels of ‘dirtier’ planes will actually increase not reduce CO2 emissions from aviation.

CO2 emissions from aviation cause at least twice the environmental damage when released at altitude, however ‘clean’ the aircraft. The goal of whatever tax is levied must be to reduce, not increase, the total number of flights and to discourage airport expansion.

The demand for flying has been driven up artificially by cheap flights - especially in the UK. 

It is crucial that this demand is cut – and this can be done by significantly raising the price of flights through increased air passenger duty. 

Any taxation on the fuel efficiency of individual aircraft would be best reflected by a fuel tax. There is currently no tax on aviation fuel.

Bristol International Airport is Easyjet’s second largest hub after Gatwick.

Take Action

You can counteract Easyjet’s misleading suggestions by emailing your MP through and including the following points:

  1. State that you would like environmental taxation to be increased: in the form of higher Air Passenger Duty and direct emissions taxation on all UK flights, including currently excluded freight and private jets
  2. Call for the oldest and most polluting aircraft to be banned
  3. Call for a halt in all airport expansion due to increased noise, congestion on our roads, air and light pollution and loss of green fields to car parking which will seriously affect our communities
  4. Call for immediate commencement of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme
  5. Call for a reduction in short haul flights
  6. Call for an aviation fuel tax and VAT on air tickets
  7. Call for advertisements of air travel to show how much environmental damage is carried out when flying
  8. Point out that technological improvements to aircraft will result in only small improvements to efficiency, and will not be delivered soon enough to cut the currently increasing emissions that are contributing to climate change.

If your MP is Liam Fox or John Penrose, please write asking them to support the recently published conservative report, ‘Blue Print for the Green Economy’ and call for a halt on airport expansion in the UK and greater environmental taxation on all flights including freight and private jets.

If your MP is Labour or Liberal Democrat, please write calling for no further airport expansion in the UK and greater environmental taxation on all flights including freight and private jets.