The British Meditterranean Airways, a Londan-based company, has operated several empty flights between the Heathrow airport and Cardiff since some months. Not a single ticket was sold, the arrivals and departures were not announced and the airport screens did not dsplay these flights.
The environmentalists are particularly angry over the release of more than five tonnes of C02 into the atmosphere on each 140-miles journey.
BMed acknowledged the situation and said a business motive was behind its decision.
Airlines will lose their landing rights at Heathrow if they do not make use of 80% of the landing slots over a period of six-months. It is understood that BMed operated regular ‘ghost flghts’ on the short route between Heathrow and Cardiff in order to retain landing rights for the company’s summer operatios to destinations in Central Asia, Africa and the Middle East.
Airlines run empty flights for various reasons for short durations. The British Airways flew dozens of flights empty during the last week of January this year after passengers made other plans for their trips due to fears of a two-day strike by BA employees.
Business motives are behind some of the decisions that ignore environmental consequences in industries.
Richard Dyer from the environmental group Friends of the Earth said ‘It is a crazy situation but the tax regime supports this kind of behaviour.’
The incident only makes it clear that insensitivity to environmental requirments needs to be fought against effectively.