Sixty per cent of arrivals at the airport are being held in the four holding stacks over the capital and they are costing millions because of the delays and pollution caused by planes kept circling before landing at Heathrow.
Tens of thousands of travellers are being delayed, and often miss connecting flights, as Britain’s busiest airport continues to creak under the weight of demand.
Planes reportedly circle for a total of 55 hours a day over the airport, burning 190 tonnes of fuel and releasing 600 tonnes of carbon dioxide.
The wasted fuel is worth £119,000 every day, according to The Times. Average delays for the 55,800 passengers on a typical day range from four to 10 minutes, rising to 20 in the late morning peak.
Boris Johnson has urged the Government to fund a £40 billion airport in the Thames Estuary to help ease congestion at Heathrow.