Lisbon airport works require environmental assessment

By TPN/Lusa, in News · 11-01-2020 16:00:00 · 0 Comments

Portugal’s environmental organisation Zero said that the expansion process of Lisbon airport is “absolutely unbelievable" from a regulatory and political point of view and warned of the lack of an Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).

Zero considered, in a statement, "unbelievable the inability of regulatory authorities to enforce the legislation,” on the day that expansion works begin (fast runway exits) at Lisbon’s airport that imply the suspension of night flights.

When the works are ready there will be an increase in airport activity in Lisbon, which will have significant impacts in areas such as air quality, noise or pressure on infrastructure, Zero said in the statement, concluding that it is incomprehensible that no EIA has been conducted.

"These works will have the immediate effect of potentially increasing the number of movements, so their cumulative effect on the environment and the quality of life of the population should be assessed," the environmentalist association said.

Zero said the works are included in the expansion strategy of Lisbon airport, and this is an unacceptable ploy of fragmentation of projects and works to circumvent the obligation of an EIA process but the National Civil Aviation Authority (ANAC) said on 16 December that the works that are now beginning are planned in the 'Masterplan' for the expansion of the airport.

The environmentalists, therefore, said that the environmental impacts resulting from the expansion works should be evaluated and the participation of the population should be allowed, and they recall that already in 2004 the European Court of Justice had ruled that works on an airport that aim to significantly increase its capacity, even if they do not include changes to the runway, should be subject to an EIA and that other European Commission guidelines go in the same direction.

The organisation warned that ANA-Aeroportos de Portugal's expansion plan still in force does not mention anything about any Lisbon airport expansion project, that the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA), as the national Environmental Impact Assessment Authority, does not respond to Zero's offices and has also not required any assessment, and that there is no Action Plan for Noise that ensures compliance with the legislated limit values.


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