Unmasked! The environmental ramifications of Gatwick Airport’s expansion plans.


You are invited to attend a series of virtual talks hosted by CAGNE, the umbrella aviation community and environment group for Sussex, Surrey and Kent, are delighted to offer you a unique opportunity to hear from international experts talking about how Gatwick Airport’s plan to rebuild the emergency runway as a second runway would further impact you, your children’s children and our planet. 

“Aviation is the ‘big elephant’ in the room when it comes to emissions”, says CAGNE.  ‘We do not seek to demonise those that fly, and less than half the UK population actually fly, but we seek to educate and change attitudes the same way that attitudes have changed towards recycling and food waste.’


2021 we can expect to see the new owners of Gatwick Airport return with expansion plans by ‘stealth’ as they seek to use the emergency runway as a second runway.  This will significantly increase the issues this airport is creating for future generations and negating the efforts that other industries are doing to tackle climate change.

The Gatwick master plan points to an increase in the airport’s emissions from 0.77million tons of CO2 in 2017 to 0.95 million tons of CO2 in 2028, but this assessment is limited in both scope and duration: the analysis shows the emissions that Gatwick is directly responsible for (such as fuel used by vehicles at the airport, and the electricity purchased), as well as indirect emissions from passenger journeys to and from the airport and staff commuting. Aircraft emissions are also included in this calculation, but crucially, only for the landing and take-off cycle, capturing the flights emissions below an altitude of 3,000 feet only. The emergency runway would increase passenger throughput of 70mppa, this would equate to 3.63 million tons of CO2 in 2050, an increase of nearly 1million tonnes of CO2, not accounting for the harmful effects of flying that are non-CO2-related: engine NOx, contrails developing into cirrus cloud, water vapour, soot/black carbon… they actually dominate aviation’s effect on climate.

Each talk is FREE and will last one hour with an informal Q&A session. 

Email to Book a Talk cagnegatwick@gmail.com

Thursday 24th June at 7pm – Aviation New Technology and Climate Facts  – Book Talk 1. Tim Johnson, Director of Aviation Environment Federation, on aviation’s new technology and alternative aviation fuels. Prof Dan Osborn of UCL on the worry of Climate Change: ‘What if mitigation does not work in time?’ Alex Ryder, member for the Environment of the West Sussex Youth Cabinet. Chaired by Friends of the Earth

Thursday 30th September at 7pm – Our Natural World – Book Talk 2. Sarah Ward, Living Seas Officer at Sussex Wildlife Trust, ‘The Ocean is a carbon sink’. Sir Charlie Burrell will talk about his experience setting up the Knepp (West Sussex) rewilding project and how this might fit into a regional Nature Recovery Area. Chaired by CAGNE

Thursday 21st October 7pm – The Air that we Breathe – Book Talk 3. Dr Gary Fuller from Imperial College discusses the finding of his research into air quality conducted around Gatwick Airport. Bridget Fox for the Woodland Trust on the importance of tree-planting for our air quality and why trees need to stay and not make way for hotels and car parks. Chaired by Friends of the Earth

Wednesday 3rd November at 7pm – The Concerns of Future Generations – Book Talk 4. Chaired by the West Sussex Youth Cabinet – a gathering of young minds: The science tells us so clearly that if we keep building new airports, the future for our children is just unspeakably grim. Caroline Lucas, Member of Parliament Green Party (TBC). Friends of the Earth speaker (TBC)

Thursday 25th November at 7pm – Alternatives to Flying for Pleasure – Book Talk 5. Anna Hughes, Director of Flight Free UK on how you can still enjoy travel, holidays without flying – sustainable forms of travel are out there if you look. Chaired by CAGNE

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