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Just for its climate impact, Cape airport plan doesn’t fly

Airplanes at the Cape Cod Gateway Airport in Hyannis. Hyannis-area residents and business owners who rely on the airport are at odds over the proposed $22 million extension of the airport’s runway.Vincent Alban For The Boston Globe

The media can no longer save climate change for last, as in the Sept. 16 editorial, “Hyannis airport plan hits turbulence.” In an era of daily climate devastation, the climate impact of airport expansion belongs at the top of critiques, not tucked away in the final paragraph.

The Globe added insult to injury in the penultimate paragraph. A study affirming that expanding the airport “will attract more [commercial] flights” would hardly be an endorsement, with aviation emissions rising fast and carbon-cutting solutions not scaling up.

Left out entirely was this national embarrassment: Most of the primarily privately owned planes using airports like Cape Cod Gateway still burn leaded gasoline, decades after it was banned from America’s roads. In the process they dump lead pollution on surrounding communities.


Peter Fairley