Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-10-11-Speech-4-038"

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"Mr President, Mr Vice-President of the Commission, ladies and gentlemen, when it comes to the issue of airport capacity, we have to distinguish between two issues. We want to mitigate the negative effects of aviation, which is why we agree on emissions trading for the aviation industry. We may not agree about the methodology or timescales involved, Mrs Lichtenberger, but in principle, we agree that the aviation sector should make its contribution to mitigating environmental impacts. However, we must also have the courage, Mrs Lichtenberger, to say that for economic reasons we need growth in the aviation sector, both internally and in respect of third countries. When it comes to the economy, jobs and citizens' mobility, adequate airport capacity is essential, and it is essential for environmental reasons as well, by the way. If the aircraft did not have to spend so long on the ground waiting for takeoff and did not have to spend so long stacking overhead before landing, just imagine what this would do to help the environment! We have to recognise the fact that we need to develop our airports. Mr Blokland is quite right: we do not want to take responsibility away from the Member States or regions, but in our experience there have been difficulties with airport expansion in many parts of Europe. That is why our approach is right: we are requesting the Commission to put forward a coherent proposal on how we can have a European master plan and how we can introduce best practice so that we can all learn from each other and pursue this expansion effectively. My second point relates to ground handling services. I think we should wait for the new impact analysis. I think that the basic Directive was very successful as the efficiency of ground handling services has been improved in recent years and the costs for passengers have been reduced. As to whether we need further changes, that is an open question. I would not wish to decide conclusively today. I think we should wait for the outcome of the Commission's analysis, which is expected this winter, and only then should we decide whether or not there is a need for revision. We should not rush into any decisions today."@en1

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