Bristol Liberal Democrats have reiterated their objection to the expansion of Bristol Airport as North Somerset Council prepares to meet on Monday to decide on the controversial plans.
Bristol Airport are requesting a major expansion to their capacity to 12 million passengers a year, despite the airport already well under its current maximum capacity.
Bristol Liberal Democrats voted to support blocking the expansion at a local policy conference before the general election. This backed-up national party policy on the issue which was decided at the Autumn Conference under new radical measures to tackle the climate emergency.
Mary Page, Bristol Liberal Democrat Mayoral Candidate, said:
"The expansion plans seem to be about running a car parking business, not one promoting connectivity and global business.
"If Bristol is serious about tackling the climate emergency, then that means we need to be a good neighbour and take an interest in the activities of businesses in the next door council. Air pollution, CO2 emissions, and ecological interferences are all impacts of the expansion plans and we should, quite rightly, be concerned as these do not respect the arbitrary and artificial local authority borders.
"We need to act to protect the interests of Bristol citizens if activities near us threaten our health, wealth or environmental resources. The Bristol Airport, while a welcome provider of local jobs, needs to take its share of the responsibility of tackling the climate emergency. So we need to be their critical friend, asking them to take action towards the nation's net-zero emissions targets.
"It is difficult to support or justify any planning application that appears to be about running a profit-making car park business when we are encouraging everyone to take fewer journeys in polluting vehicles."
Wera Hobhouse, MP for Bath and Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for the Climate Emergency, Energy and the Environment, added:
"The Lib Dems recognise that flying is a positive part of life in a globalised world, but we also understand our moral duty not to expand an industry which is contributing to the climate crisis. We recognise the vital role that innovation will play in addressing the climate crisis. We, therefore, support the efforts of the aviation industry as they seek to develop new fuels and, if necessary, new designs of planes.
"In light of the necessity of achieving net-zero emissions, I, therefore, oppose the proposed expansion of Bristol Airport, which would make it possible for more planes to fly in and out of Bristol and cause a higher carbon footprint."