FRANCE has shelved plans to extend the country’s busiest airport in Paris to respect the government’s commitment to reducing its impact on climate change.
Charles de Gaule airport, near Paris, was due to undergo a major extension project that has now been cancelled due to concerns that raising its capacity would not fall in line with the government’s climate change goals.
Speaking to Le Monde, Environment Minister Barbara Pompili confirmed that France “will always need planes, but we must move towards a more reasonable use of air travel, and reach a reduction in the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions.” Transport Minister Jean-Baptiste Djebbari recently said that boosting the airport’s capacity in the midst of a Covid-induced slump in air travel seemed like “an audacious bet”.
The decision to scrap the extension was welcomed by France’s Green Party, whose leader Julien Bayou hailed it as “a great victory for environmentalists” against what he deemed “an idiotic project”.
After London Heathrow, Charles de Gaule – named after France’s most famous 20th-century leader – is Europe’s busiest airport and handled more than 76 million passengers in 2019.
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