Expansion at Palma's Son San Joan airport is opposed. | T. AYUGA

A platform has been created that opposes expansion at Son Sant Joan Airport. Consisting of environmentalist organisations such as GOB and activist groups like Extinction Rebellion, the platform held a press conference this week at which there was a rejection of the claim made by the airport’s director, Tomás Melgar, that there will not be an increase in capacity.

A spokesperson, Gaspar Alomar, said that plans show that preparations are being made for the airport to handle more passengers. Analysis of the projects that the airports authority Aena has set out suggests, for example, a 16% increase in aircraft positions, increased capacity for the baggage handling system, and increases in car parking spaces - up to 1,600 new spaces.

All of these point to there being an “unquestionable” increase in capacity. Alomar added that the platform has established a website, aeroport.aguait.cat, which addresses “Aena’s lies”, and noted that since 2016 air-traffic controllers have been warning that the number of flights per hour is being exceeded.

Reached its limit
It is obvious that “the airport has reached its limit”. Melgar has said that he is willing to meet environmentalists and explain intentions for the airport in a “totally transparent” way.
The platform therefore wishes to take him up on the offer. Unconvinced by what he has said, the platform also suggests that the parties that make up the Balearic government pact “in private” believe Aena’s version.

A meeting is also wanted with the government in order to find out what its position actually is, given that projects at the airport would be contrary to its policies.

More people
The platform believes that the government is in fact wanting to incentivise air traffic.

“It clearly has a tourism model and doesn’t wish to change it. This means ever more people.” The document drawn up by the various entities refers to the “madness of unlimited growth”.

There has to be a choice between increased numbers of tourists, greater human pressure and the generation of more waste and a Majorca that is “greener, dignified and fair”.
The datable is going to rage because more flights are programmed for the coming year which means a larger footprint and more emissions.