BUSINESS leaders have reacted with dismay after the bid to allow a third runway at Heathrow airport was rejected in court.

The Court of Appeal said the government's decision to permit the extra landing strip was unlawful as it did not take climate commitments into account.

Climate campaigners reacted with joy as the verdict was presented yesterday morning, with Heathrow vowing to appeal the decision.

Grant Schapps, transport secretary, confirmed the government would not challenge the ruling, with Boris Johnson previously stating he was not in favour of the plans.

Nicola Sturgeon has been urged to cut ties with runway promoters, who have given the SNP substantial funds for advertisements at last year's party conference.

Asked yesterday if this financial relationship with the party had enabled promoters to buy the Scottish Government’s silence, Ms Sturgeon’s official spokesman said: “No.”

In 2018 SNP MPs abstained from voting on the expansion in the House of Commons.

Scottish LibDem leader Willie Rennie called for the First Minster to 'rip up' "her agreement in support of [the] expansion" yesterday at Holyrood.

He argued no climate change assessment was made when the Scottish Government backed the third runway.

Sturgeon said questions had been "understandably and rightly raised" about the environmental impact, but added: "The decision on Heathrow expansion is not for the Scottish Government, it is not within our power or areas of responsibility.

"What we did say is that if that was going ahead, then any economic benefit of that should not miss out Scotland."

Sturgeon said she wanted all UK and Scottish policies to be "aligning with our climate change ambitions".

When Rennie made a gesture of ripping up paper, Ms Sturgeon said "Can I suggest that Willie Rennie, instead of getting up and calling for things that are outwith the powers of this Government, actually puts his shoulder to the wheel and looks at the actions this Government and this Parliament and this country has to take."

The Scottish Chamber of Commerce chief Dr Liz Cameron said that the decision "puts at risk thousands of jobs" and was a disaster for Scottish businesses.

She said: "We can’t keep bouncing back major infrastructure projects that are crucial to regional connectivity. Without expansion, it is likely airport capacity will be rerouted where there are lower ambitions for carbon reduction.

“We acknowledge the climate emergency and fully support a just transition which ensures that the costs of addressing climate change are shared equitably. We believe this judgement puts at risk thousands of jobs that Heathrow expansion would create and would have a detrimental impact on Scottish business’s ability to invest and trade. We urge the UK government to go ahead with expansion so we can get down to business.

“Business communities in Scotland will be disappointed that plans for a world-leading hub airport in the UK are now at risk. There has never been a more important time to demonstrate that Scotland and the UK is open for business.”

The Royal Institute fo Chartered Surveyors (RICS) said the Government shouldn't be planning major infrastructure projects "via the court room".

Hew Edgar, Head of RICS UK Government Relations & City Strategy, said: “The UK shouldn’t be planning major infrastructure schemes via the court room, but today’s ruling reflects the need for new infrastructure to include sustainable decision making.

“New long-term infrastructure is vital to making our economy a competitive place to do business, especially having left the EU and with ministers looking to form new trading relationships, but this needn’t come with an environmental cost."

Prof Sir Brian Hoskins, Chairman of the Grantham Institute, Imperial College London, said: “The court ruling on Heathrow expansion makes it clear that flying has to be looked at through the same climate change lens as all the rest of our activities if we are serious about fulfilling the Paris Accord on climate change and meeting the UK target of a reduction of our greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050.”