Saturday 19 June 2021

Phase out Amsterdam to Brussels flights, Dutch MPs say


Dutch MPs have called for all flights between Amsterdam and Brussels to be scrapped, saying that the journey between the two capitals can be easily done by train.

The train is not only quicker than flying but better for the environment, MPs said during Tuesday’s debate on the issue. The proposal, put forward by the left-wing green party GroenLinks, was backed by D66 and ChristenUnie, both members of the current coalition cabinet.

GroenLinks MP Suzanne Kroger said during the debate that the scarcity of slots at Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport made it sensible to use them as wisely as possible.

The motion called on the government to discuss reducing the number of flights between the two cities.

Transport minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen said in a reaction that airlines are free to decide themselves where to fly. However, she said, she is already in talks with KLM, NS and Schiphol to encourage greater use of the train on short distances.

KLM operates five flights a day between the two cities, which take 45 minutes in the air. According to website Luchtvaart Nieuws, most people using the flights are in transit.

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