Aviation bosses have met with MPs to insist a runway in the southeast of England could meet strict carbon, noise and pollution rules.

MPs on the environmental audit committee met with Andy Jefferson, the director of Sustainable Aviation to discuss the environmental impacts of a new runway.

Jefferson argued it could meet the targets, provided aircraft engines and biofuel technologies improve as expected.

He said: “We accept there are challenges, but we believe we can get it right. A mix of carbon and new aircraft technology could achieve a 50% reduction in emission by 2050.

“We are starting to see the A380 and Boeings which are 20% more efficient. The next technological revolution is expected 2030-2040. This is realistic and achievable.”

Jefferson added: “We accept the industry must grow within carbon limits. But there is a trade-off between noise and carbon. It’s the way planes are built. The challenge is to be low noise, low carbon and low emissions.”

His comments came as Gatwick’s chief executive claimed Heathrow expansion would be detrimental to Scotland.

Stewart Wingate said travellers would face higher fares to help cover the scheme and a share of the £6 billion public transport bill.

He added: “He added: “In contrast, Gatwick expansion would not cost taxpayers a penny. It would also promote a strong system of UK airports and encourage more direct international flights to and from Scotland.

“The Airports Commission itself concluded that several UK cities would lose connections if Heathrow expands and some of these are likely to be in Scotland.”