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In the papers - Wednesday, 14 May 2008

The eco-towns planned by Gordon Brown are a 'green veneer' to mask the impact of a programme to build three million new homes, conservationists said yesterday...

...Building the 10 communities in the heart of England would be environmentally unfriendly, urbanise the countryside and increase traffic congestion, campaigners said – The Daily Telegraph

Airbus has announced another delay in deliveries of its A380 superjumbo, risking further penalty payments to airlines. Airbus now plans 12 instead of 13 deliveries in 2008 and 21 instead of 25 in 2009 – The Daily Telegraph

Satellite navigation systems could be licensed by the Government in an attempt to stop lorries and coaches getting stuck in country lanes. The devices may also be given a star rating for their performance, and their packaging could be expected to make clear whether the systems were intended for use by motorists or coach drivers – The Daily Telegraph

Commuters who drive to work are facing the threat of a "car parking tax" of up to £185 a year as part of a government push to cut congestion. The "workplace parking levy" is seen as an alternative to road pricing – The Daily Telegraph

Boris Johnson, the new Mayor of London, has planted the first of 10,000 trees he promised for the capital in his election manifesto. Mr Johnson also announced the closure of the Mayor's personal newspaper The Londoner, which will save £3million a year. He will use £1million of the savings to fund his trees initiative for the city's most deprived areas – The Daily Telegraph

A tanker loaded with water has arrived in Barcelona to help the city through Spain's worst drought in decades. A six-ship flotilla, scheduled to operate for at least three months, will provide the 5.5million people of greater Barcelona, capital of the Catalonia region with 6 per cent of their usual water consumption – The Independent

Another top executive at BAA was shunted into the departure lounge yesterday as the house cleaning effort instituted by its new chief executive gathers pace. The embattled airport group announced that Mark Bullock, the managing director of Heathrow who oversaw the disastrous opening of the new Terminal 5 in March, had "chosen to leave" the company – The Independent

The managing director of Heathrow airport is stepping down in the wake of the Terminal 5 fiasco, BAA announced yesterday, as Britain's largest airport unveiled its third boss in a year. Mark Bullock resigned with immediate effect and will be replaced by Mike Brown, managing director of London Underground, at the end of the summer - The Guardian

FirstGroup is to announce an equite placing of more than £200M today, to shore up its balance sheet amid difficult credit market conditions - Financial Times

Subsidies and other support for renewable energy are a big factor in merger and acquisition activity in the industry, a survey has found, raising fears that companies are making themselves vulnerable to changes in the political climate - Financial Times

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