Norfolk

Norwich Airport expansion plan backed by city council

Norwich Airport
Image caption Norwich Airport wants to increase passenger number to 930,000 by 2030 and 1.4m by 2045

A plan to treble passenger numbers at an airport has been backed by a council, despite environmental objections.

Norwich Airport wants to increase the annual figure from 520,000 to 1.4 million by 2045.

Labour-led Norwich City Council's cabinet agreed on Wednesday to endorse the airport's draft master plan.

But Green Party councillor Martin Schmierer said aviation's "impact on the environment cannot be overstated."

The airport's plan states its aims to serve more destinations and expand the existing terminal, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

It also wants a 500m (1,640ft) expansion of the main runway to the east into land in the Broadland council area and the relocation of the air traffic control tower south of the runway.

Labour cabinet member for sustainable growth, Mike Stonard, recommended councillors endorse the plan and said there were no direct financial implications arising from the report.

But Mr Schmierer said: "As we know aviation is one of the biggest producers of CO2 emissions; the altitude at which planes fly damages the ozone layer and the impact on the environment cannot be overstated."

He questioned how the scheme's environmental impact could be considered "neutral".

But the council's regeneration director, Graham Nelson, told the cabinet that assessment was of the impact of the endorsement itself, and not of the actual master plan.

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