Whatever the cause of this, the saga has done little for his attempts to appear as a credible future prime minister.
For now though, the main reaction among campaigners against the airport will be relief. For six years Johnsons fevered vision has hovered over people living in the estuary like an alien invader. Now finally they can get back on with their lives.
The London mayor, Boris Johnson, has launched a withering attack on the “irrelevant” and “myopic” Airports Commission, after the panel tasked with deciding where to build additional runways in the south-east finally ruled out his plan for a new hub in the Thames estuary.
The commission said that after detailed study it had concluded the proposal for a new four-runway airport had “substantial disadvantages that collectively outweigh its potential benefits”.
The commission chairman, Sir Howard Davies, said there were serious doubts about its operation and deliverability.
He said: “The economic disruption would be huge and there are environmental hurdles which it may prove impossible, or very time-consuming to surmount. Even the least ambitious version of the scheme would cost £70bn to £90bn with much greater public expenditure involved than in other options – probably some £30bn to £60bn in total.”
As the young people might say, “Suck it, Boris”.
Plans to build a 24-hour £39bn hub airport on large sandbanks off the Kent coast have been unveiled.
Engineering firm Beckett Rankine wants to construct a four-runway airport on Goodwin Sands near Deal.
Director Tim Beckett said it was the “most sustainable solution” to aviation expansion in the South East and would have the “least adverse impact”.
The plan for the hub airport, the fourth proposed for the South East, is being opposed by environmentalists.
The Goodwin Sands are a series of shifting sandbanks, 11 miles long and six miles wide, that are also the site of historic shipwrecks.
They just won’t give it a rest, will they?
But Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) spokesman Jamie Weir said: “Many South East airports such as Manston currently have plenty of runway capacity, so why are new airport proposals being pitched on a daily basis?
“The question of whether we actually need fresh capacity is the one which needs to be answered before we start looking for sites. This proposal, like all of those in the Thames Estuary, fails to even recognise this.
“We believe that the UK government must prove the need for additional capacity before anything like this is contemplated.”
Earlier in the week, BoJo was pontificating on Stansted. That’s another airport outside his jurisdiction. Perhaps Kent County Council, Medway Council and the local authority for Stansted should start proposing wholesale redevelopment of London.
Building an island airport on the Goodwin Sands won’t cause environmental problems? They are completely barking.
We are campaigning against an airport on or near the Thames Estuary because it would be:
• Unaffordable for the UK
• Responsible for concreting over much of Kent
• A source of significant noise and pollution
• In the wrong location
• Devastating for wildlife
I want to post fun and interesting things, but sadly the rest of the world keeps wanting to annoy and frustrate me. The pie-in-the-sky proposals for a hub airport on the Thames Estuary or North Kent Marshes is one of the latter. I really hope the Conservative’s very own BoJo the Clown is made to eat custard pie over this.