Scottish Affairs Committee to investigate airports

Glasgow Airport

The Scottish Affairs Committee of the UK government announced it has launched a new inquiry “considering airports in Scotland.”

The committee said the focus of the inquiry “is around the airports themselves, the impacts of Covid-19, the local community and environmental concerns.”

The committee said: “Glasgow Airport saw a drop in passenger numbers of over three quarters last year compared to 2019, and many airlines ceased operating temporarily during the height of the pandemic.

“Meanwhile, many airports in rural communities had to stay open for emergency services, key industry workers and cargo for crucial supplies.

“In the year of COP26, the committee is also keen to explore the impact environmental policies are having on airports, and in particular what schemes there are to reduce the carbon footprint of airports.”

Scottish Affairs Committee chairman Pete Wishart said: “Airports in Scotland are a lifeline for many rural communities, and for people travelling to different parts of the UK and further afield.

“In a turbulent 18 months for airports with the covid-19 pandemic, our committee is keen to explore what impact reduced numbers of flights have had on communities, and how this has impacted the local job market.

“In the year of Scotland hosting COP26, and appetite to tackle harmful emissions, we are also seeking evidence on how the carbon footprint of airports can be reduced.”

The committee said it is inviting written submissions by October 6 and these should focus on, but not be limited to:

  • What has been the effect of the coronavirus pandemic and reduced flights on Scottish airports and local communities, including tourism?
  • How do airports support the local and regional job market?
  • How effective is the movement of air freight for essential supplies in rural or isolated airports?
  • Is there a sufficient level of investment in the infrastructure around airports in Scotland?
  • How will airspace modernisation affect Scottish airports?
  • What schemes are in place to reduce the carbon footprint of airports?