Portugal's government will have to carry out a strategic environmental assessment for the new Lisbon airport next year.
The Portuguese government will have to carry out a strategic environmental assessment for the new Lisbon airport next year, according to two proposed amendments to the 2021 budget approved on Tuesday through ‘negative coalitions’.
On November 4, the minister for infrastructure and housing, Pedro Nuno Santos, said in parliament that the crisis caused by the pandemic had given the government time to consider a strategic environmental assessment on the new Lisbon airport.
At a hearing in parliament, as part of the discussion on the state budget for 2021 and in response to a member of parliament, Inês Sousa Real of the People-NAnimal-Nature party (PAN), the minister stressed that, before the covid-19 pandemic, the capacity of Lisbon airport was “depleted”, with “many flights” being refused, which led to a loss of revenue for several sectors of the economy.
“The urgency meant that we did not waste any more time on the need to expand Lisbon’s airport capacity,” Santos continued.
“[Now], by not removing the need to increase airport capacity, because we expect a recovery in a few years, gives us some time to consider the possibility of strategic environmental assessment,” said the minister.
Several environmental organisations have said that the process relating to the new Lisbon airport needs to be considered in the context of a strategic environmental assessment, in which several possible options are considered.
The special vote on the proposed budget and the 1,500 or so proposed amendments started last Friday and ends on Wednesday, with the final overall vote scheduled for Thursday.