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Civil Engineering in the papers today - Monday 15 December 2008

Hilary Benn, the environment secretary, lifted the lid yesterday on the Cabinet level debate on the expansion of Heathrow, saying the government must not contemplate allowing itself to breach air pollution limits set by the European commission. . . . .

His intervention could potentially put a break on government expansion plans - The Guardian

The number of homes being built in Britain has plummeted to its lowest level since the early 1920s as falling house prices exacerbate the crisis in the construction industry. A report out today from the Construction Products Association (CPA)and Ernst & Young reveals there have been just 135,000 housing starts this year, compared to 203,500 in 2007 - The Guardian

A third runway at Heathrow is to be approved next month as Gordon Brown prepares to overrule objections made by ministers within his Cabinet. Allies of the Prime Minister said yesterday that he was as determined as ever to support a plan that he believes is vital for Britain’s commerce – The Times

Investigating in infrastructure is one way of countering recession so business leaders have given a guarded welcome to the Scottish government’s identification of 29 transport projects it wants to see proceed over the next 20 years. But there was concern about the lack of detail over the cost and timing of these projects – and over the questions last week’s announcement raised concerning how the devolved Holyroad administration would pay for future public spending projects – The Financial Times

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