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“20 years” for Heathrow to fulfil noise pledges

Heathrow Qantas b747 over houses arp 3x2

Heathrow Airport has said it could take up to 20 years to fulfil the noise management pledges it is making in a bid to get the proposed third runway built.

Heathrow has pledged a package of £700M of noise insulation to 160,000 homes affected by expansion. This is more than the current offer from the airport, which includes 50% towards to cost of some windows or free secondary glazing, as well as free loft insulation, for around 49,500 homes.

However, speaking to the London Assembly Environment Committee yesterday (Thursday 16 March), Heathrow Airport director of sustainability and environment Matt Gorman suggested that residents could be waiting for up to 20 years for noise insulation. This could mean some residents will be affected by excess noise long after the third runway opens.

“Our current proposal is a 20 year period, and I have acknowledged that that is something that is comparable with other big European airports, but I take the challenge that it is potentially a long period and it is something we will need to look at,” said Gorman.

He suggested insulation works could take place before the runway opens and described delivery of the scheme as a “key issue” to be included in Heathrow’s upcoming consultation programme.

The Airports Commission has recommended Heathrow be held to account on a noise insulation scheme extending across the entire noise footprint, a European standard.

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