Gatwick airport to consult for 6 weeks on 3 “options” for its 2nd runway

Gatwick airport is starting a public consultation, on 4th April (lasting 6 weeks – ending 16th May) on its runway submission to the Airports Commission.  The consultation has 3 options (not the same 3 as the 3 options in the July submission).  The first is the close runway (which is little use to the airport) 585 metres to the south; the second is a  wide spaced runway, 1,045 metres to the south, for segregated mode (ie. take-offs on one runway, landings on the other); or the wide spaced runway, 1,045 metres to the south, for mixed mode (both take-offs and landing) – the profitable option.  Gatwick airport very definitely wants the 3rd option. The airport says they want to  “refine and improve” their plans. However, they have to submit their plan to the Commission on 9th May, so the timing of the consultation is odd as it will end after the plans are submitted. When Gatwick submitted their schemes to the Commission in July 2013, there were 3 options;  a close runway about 600 metres south of the current runway, for “dependent segregated mode”; or a medium spaced runway about 750 metres south for “independent segregated mode”; or a wide spaced runway about 1,035 metres to the south of the current runway, for “independent mixed mode.”  Only the last option was short-listed by the Commission.   There will be 16 exhibitions in towns and villages in Kent, Sussex and Surrey.
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London Gatwick to consult publicly on second runway options

17 March 2014 (Gatwick Airport press release)

  • Gatwick seeking views and suggestions on its second runway options
  • Six-week consultation and public exhibitions will begin on 4th April 2014
  • Feedback will help refine and improve Gatwick’s second runway proposal to the Airports Commission

 

In its Interim Report published in December 2013, the Government’s independent Airports Commission included London Gatwick on its shortlist of potential locations for the next runway in the UK.

Gatwick recognises that its local communities will have many questions about what a second runway at Gatwick would mean for them, and is inviting them to participate in a six week public consultation starting on 4th April 2014.

The consultation will provide further information on the three options Gatwick proposed to the Airports Commission in its initial submission last July, and will give people an opportunity to tell the airport what they think about these. People will be able to respond online via the airport website, in person at one of 16 public exhibitions, or by post.

The reason for consulting on all three options is to provide more detail on each, the reasons for Gatwick’s provisional order of preference and to obtain views and feedback to help refine and improve the options.

Option 1 is a new runway 585m south of the existing runway, Option 2 is a new runway 1,045m south of the existing runway, with one runway used for landings and the other used for take-offs. Option 3 is similar in layout to Option 2 but both runways would be used for landings and take-offs.

While each option has its own strengths, Gatwick’s evaluation to date has led to a provisional order of preference in its consultation document, with Option 3 being its preferred first choice.

The Airports Commission focused its assessment on this option for last December’s Interim Report but said it would, however, keep this under review.

The consultation process starts next week when a letter will be sent to homes and businesses in Sussex, Kent and Surrey with details of the consultation and the list and timings of the public exhibitions. Questions within the consultation will cover a range of topics including the major environmental, economic and social considerations. The consultation findings will be published by Ipsos MORI in an independent report by this summer.

Gatwick will provide the Airports Commission with the results of this consultation and any resulting option developments so that there may be an opportunity for them to be taken into account by the Commission before it reports to the Government in the summer of 2015.

Stewart Wingate, CEO of London Gatwick, said: “The views of the local community are an essential element in shaping Gatwick’s second runway options. Therefore it is important we hear from as many people as possible through our consultation so that we can consider local opinions fully in our refined runway proposals.”

About Gatwick’s consultation

  • The options on which Gatwick is consulting on for a new 3.4 km runway are:
    • Option 1 – a new runway 585m south of the existing runway with one runway used for landings and the other used for take-offs.
    • Option 2 – a new runway 1,045m south of the existing runway with one runway used for landings and the other used for take-offs, and a new terminal between the runways.
    • Option 3 – a new runway 1,045m south of the existing runway with both runways used for landings and take-offs, and a new terminal between the runways.
  • The six-week public consultation runs from 4th April to 16th May 2014.

http://www.mediacentre.gatwickairport.com/News/London-Gatwick-to-consult-publicly-on-second-runway-options-8d5.aspx

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 Gatwick’s submission to the Airports Commission in July 2013

Gatwick’s plans are at: ”Proposals for providing Additional Runway Capacity in the Longer Term

Gatwick 2nd runway plans – to increase airport to larger than Heathrow is now – opposed by GACC   (see below)

Their 3 options

1.  This is the close spaced option for the 2nd runway, some 600 – 700 metres south of the existing runway. “Dependent Segregated Mode”

Gatwick close spaced runway about 600m 66 mppa

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2This is the medium spaced option for the 2nd runway, some over 750 metres, but under 1,000 metres or so , south of the existing runway. “Independent Segregated Mode”

Gatwick medium spaced runway under 1035 metres 82mppa

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3. This is the wide spaced option for the 2nd runway, over 1,035 metres south of the existing runway.  ”Independent Mixed Mode”

Gatwick wide spaced runway over 1035 metres 87 mppa

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Notes to Editors – from the Gatwick Airport press release

17.3.2014

About Gatwick’s consultation

  • The options on which Gatwick is consulting on for a new 3.4 km runway are:
    • Option 1 – a new runway 585m south of the existing runway with one runway used for landings and the other used for take-offs.
    • Option 2 – a new runway 1,045m south of the existing runway with one runway used for landings and the other used for take-offs, and a new terminal between the runways.
    • Option 3 – a new runway 1,045m south of the existing runway with both runways used for landings and take-offs, and a new terminal between the runways.
  • The six-week public consultation runs from 4th April to 16th May 2014.
  • Public consultations will be held in Crawley, Rusper, Smallfield, Ifield, Lingfield, Horsham, Crowborough, East Grinstead, Reigate, Crawley Down, Horley, Charlwood, Dorking, Edenbridge, Felbridge, Epsom.
  • More information and full details of where the public exhibitions will be held can be found atwww.gatwickairport.com/consultation from 4 April. The list of exhibitions will also be published in the local media.

 

About the Airports Commission process

The Airports Commission published its interim report in December 2013, finding that there was a case for an additional runway in the South East of the UK, and shortlisting Gatwick as one of three options for where a new runway could be built.

Throughout 2014, a range of detailed studies will be completed for shortlisted options.

In 2015, the Airports Commission will make recommendations to the Government on how to meet any need for additional airport capacity in the longer term.

About the Airports Commission Interim Report

The interim report was published in December 2013. It included the following information on Gatwick’s proposed options in section 6.74:

“Gatwick Airport Ltd has proposed that a new runway should be constructed south of the existing one. It has identified three options: close-spaced, wide-spaced/dependent operation and wide-spaced/independent option. The Commission’s assessment has focused on the last – a runway over 3,000m in length spaced sufficiently south of the existing runway (at least 1,035m) to permit fully independent operation. This offers the greatest increase in capacity while still having relatively low environmental and noise impacts compared with some other potential sites. The Commission will, however, keep this under review as it takes forward more detailed development and appraisal. The proposal also includes related new terminal facilities and taxiways between the new and existing runways.”

http://www.mediacentre.gatwickairport.com/News/London-Gatwick-to-consult-publicly-on-second-runway-options-8d5.aspx

 


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Consultation over Gatwick runway options

17 March 2014 (BBC)

CGI of second Gatwick runway
The proposed second runway at Gatwick is being considered by the Airports Commission
 

People in the South East will help shape the plans for Gatwick’s proposed second runway, the airport has said.

The proposal is one of three Airports Commission options for expanding UK airport capacity. The other two involve building at Heathrow.

A six-week consultation starts on 4 April with 16 exhibitions in towns and villages in Kent, Sussex and Surrey.

Gatwick Airport said it wanted to get opinions on its three runway options to help “refine and improve” them.

‘Essential element’

Letters are to be sent to homes and businesses in the three counties giving details of the events.

Questions within the consultation will cover a range of topics including environmental, economic and social considerations.

Stewart Wingate, CEO of London Gatwick, said: “The views of the local community are an essential element of shaping Gatwick’s second runway options.

“Therefore it is important we hear from as many people as possible through our consultation so that we can consider local opinions in our refined runway proposals.”

The exhibitions will be held in Crawley, Rusper, Smallfield, Ifield, Lingfield, Horsham, Crowborough, East Grinstead, Reigate, Crawley Down, Horley, Charlwood, Dorking, Edenbridge, Felbridge, Epsom.

The Airports Commission interim report was published in December. and detailed studies will be completed for short-listed options throughout 2014.

In 2015, the Airports Commission will make recommendations to the government on how to meet the need for additional airport capacity in the longer term.

 

Gatwick runway options

  • Option 1 – 585m runway south of the existing runway
  • Option 2 – 1,045m runway, south of the existing runway with one runway used for take-offs and the other for landings
  • Option 3 – similar to option 2 but with both runways used for landings and take-offs

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-26613812

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EU compromise on inclusion of long haul flights in the ETS faces opposition – vote on 19th March

A number of EU politicians plan to vote against a deal to exempt long-haul flights, to and from Europe, from paying for carbon emissions until the end of 2016 in an attempt to prevent the EU from bowing to international pressure.  The European Parliament’s 71-member Environment Committee will vote on March 19 on a deal brokered by EU diplomats earlier in March to extend a so-called “stop the clock” measure exempting intercontinental flights from regulation under its ETS.  The vote on the 19th will be a preliminary indication of whether the proposal can win enough support in the full 766-strong EU Parliament, a step required before it can become law.  If there is no agreement by the end of April, this is likely to reignite tensions with Europe’s major trading partners (US, China, India) and risk a trade war. Failure to reach agreement on continuing to allow flights into and out of the EU not to pay for their carbon emissions would be good news for environmentalists, as it would mean that an existing law that requires all aviation to pay for emissions would automatically apply. There is a lot of internal European politics involved. 
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EU compromise on airline emissions faces opposition

Thu Mar 13, 2014

* Failure to agree in April could trigger trade threats

* Previous law suspended because of international opposition

By Susanna Twidale and Barbara Lewis (Reuters)

LONDON/BRUSSELS,

A number of EU politicians plan to vote against a deal to exempt long-haul flights from paying for carbon emissions until the end of 2016 in an attempt to prevent the European Union from bowing to international pressure.

The European Parliament’s 71-member Environment Committee will vote on March 19 on a deal brokered by EU diplomats earlier in March to extend a so-called “stop the clock” measure exempting intercontinental flights from regulation under its Emissions Trading System (ETS).

Next week’s vote of the cross-party committee would be a preliminary indication of whether the proposal can win enough support in the full 766-strong EU Parliament, a step required before it can become law.

Failure to get final agreement on the compromise before the end of April would be likely to reignite tensions with Europe’s major trading partners, such as China and the United States, and risk a trade war.

But for environmentalists, it would be a triumph because it would mean that an existing law that requires all aviation to pay for emissions would automatically apply.

Under the “stop-the-clock” proposal, only internal EU flights are charged for emissions.

 

DIVISIONS

Matthias Groote, environment committee chairman in the European Parliament, said by phone there was still no majority either way in the committee on the issue.

The centre-right European People’s Party (EPP), the biggest grouping in the parliament, is broadly in favour of the extension, but liberal ALDE member Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy said by phone he was encouraging his members to vote against the deal.

Groote said there was still opposition to the deal among some members of his Socialist Party, while the Greens, the European Parliament’s fourth-biggest group, have already said they would oppose the proposal.

The European Union in 2012 started charging all airlines that use EU airports for all of their emissions.

But after fierce opposition from China and the United States, it suspended the law to give the U.N.’s global aviation body, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), more time to craft a global measure to regulate airlines’ rising output of heat-trapping gases.

Last October, the roughly 190 nations at ICAO agreed to design a global scheme by 2016, which would not take effect until 2020, and rejected letting Europe apply its own plan to foreign carriers in the meantime.

Gerbrandy said he was seeking a compromise that would mean international airlines would have to pay for their emissions once they entered European airspace, in line with a proposal put forward by the Commission.

“For me this (law) goes much further than aviation and the climate. It is about the position of the EU in the world,” he said.

Environmental campaigners also say the parliament should hold out for an airspace approach.

“The International Civil Aviation Organisation recognises that regulating emissions in states’ airspace is legal,” Bill Hemmings, aviation manager at campaign group Transport & Environment, said. “This is what the parliament should ensure happens now.” (editing by Jane Baird)

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/03/13/eu-ets-aviation-idUKL6N0MA2CM20140313

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Other recent articles about the ETS

 

Vote on ETS in European Parliament on 19th March on whether “stop the clock” continues to 2016 or 2020

March 13, 2014

MEPs on the European Parliament’s environment committee will next week (19th) be faced with a difficult choice on aviation and the ETS – accept a humiliating surrender to America, Russian and Chinese bullying, or risk a trade war with grave economic consequences. Last week negotiators reached a deal to exempt non-EU airlines from paying for their CO2 emissions, in deference to pressure from Washington, Moscow and Beijing. The EU “stopped the clock” on the scheme, except for intra EU flights, and a decision on the next stage has to be made on when, and if, the carbon emissions from flights to and from the EU can again be included. Sticking with “stop the clock” gives advantages to hub airports just outside EU airspace, such as Istanbul, at the expense of EU competitors. The Parliament is demanding that the exemption should end in 2016 rather than in 2020, and the text agreed with member states says only an ICAO agreement which reduces emissions – rather than just halting the rise in emissions – would meet the conditions to allow carbon from flights to and from the EU to continue to be excluded. The UK wants the 2020 date. If the agreement is passed in the March 19 ENVI meeting, it will be presented at the Parliament’s plenary session on April 3 for a full vote by MEPs. If passed, the regulation will come into immediate effect.

Click here to view full story…

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Good 4 min 30 secs video of interview with Peter Liese explaining the situation, and how the ETS will snap back to “full scope”in 2016 if ICAO has not performed, and a key date will be May 2018, when airlines will have to pay:

Peter Liese MEP, rapporteur on Aviation in the EU ETS, talks to environment journalist Sonja van Renssen of viEUws.eu about the provisional trilogue agreement and enforcement of the scheme on non-compliant airlines:

 http://www.vieuws.eu/environment/ets-eu-pins-hopes-on-2016-for-global-airline-emissions-deal-rapporteur-peter-liese-asserts/

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NGOs urge EU governments to take action over EU ETS enforcement against non-compliant foreign airlines

March 3, 2014

European environmental NGOs have formally requested German, Dutch and British authorities responsible for administering the Aviation EU ETS to take necessary action against airlines that failed to comply with the carbon scheme in 2012. The NGOs name airlines Air China, China Eastern, China Southern, Air India, Jet Airways, Saudia and Aeroflot as not having submitted carbon permits to cover their intra-European flights that year by the 30 April 2013 deadline. Facing international opposition, the EU temporarily suspended a requirement for airlines to report emissions from intercontinental flights to and from Europe in 2012 under the ‘Stop the Clock’ derogation. Carriers regardless of nationality were still required to comply with the scheme for flights carried out within Europe. The NGOs point out that offenders gain a competitive advantage over compliant airlines if the regulations are not enforced equally and consistently. The NGOs say “It makes no sense and undermines the EU’s position internationally to enforce the ETS partially or in an arbitrary and discriminatory manner.” EU countries must enforce compliance with the ETS in a consistent and fair manner.     Click here to view full story…

 

 

Aircraft operators hit with ETS non-compliance penalty as EU states send out enforcement notices

February 24, 2014

As part of the process of enforcing payments for carbon emissions by airlines in the ETS, notices have been sent to airlines and business jet operators that failed to comply with regulations in 2012. It is understood that one Europe-based commercial business jet owner has received a penalty from the UK authorities of some half a million euros for failing to surrender the required number of allowances by the 30 April 2013 deadline. The main EU countries (UK, German, France etc) have responsibility as Competent Authorities (CAs) for sending notices for non-compliance on the airlines of selected countries. Member states have an obligation to issue fines of €100 for every tonne of CO2 an aircraft operator fails to submit an allowance to cover. The various Member States have taken different approaches, with some countries more assiduous than others. Some EU authorities are faced with enforcing penalties on Chinese, Indian and Russian operators that carried out intra-European flights in 2012 but failed to comply with the EU ETS ‘Stop the Clock’ regime. The “Stop the Clock” derogation during 2013 meant the obligation to report emissions from intercontinental flights to and from Europe were temporarily suspended. EU states are under pressure to act from EU politicians unhappy at what they see as ‘feet-dragging’ over enforcing compliance. More detail from GreenAir online.     Click here to view full story…

 

Sandbag blog: Aviation in the ETS – still no deal

February 20, 2014

If EU governments have kept their word, letters should now be landing on the doormats of the airlines across the world who haven’t complied with the ETS. This last minute notice of penalties for non-compliant airlines is a desperate last minute attempt to show that EU laws will be applied when airlines operate in Europe. Sandbag say that though the EU data is sketchy, a number of airlines, including China Eastern and Air India, were missing from EU records, despite the law saying they should pay for their CO2 when they flew from one EU airport to another (the UK won’t currently confirm who isn’t compliant). Now the proposals for a change to the scheme are in trialogue discussion between the three pillars of the EU government, the Commission, the Parliament and the Council. MEP Peter Liese, who is leading the ETS proposals, has said he is willing to compromise further, and allow the current limited scheme to continue for 2 more years. This unsatisfactory and weak position suits EU member states afraid of confrontation or trade wars with China, India etc. Peter Liese wants EU member states to agree that the ETS should revert to full coverage (not only within Europe as at present) in 2016.    Click here to view full story…

 

 

EU’s aviation emissions ETS law ‘puts Europe’s global power to the test’, MEPs say

January 27, 2014

Euractiv reports that members of the European Parliament and industry representatives say the ETS for aviation is rapidly turning into a “political question of the EU’s influence on the world stage”. There will be a key vote by the European Parliament’s environment committee on 30th January. The Parliament’s rapporteur on aviation ETS, Peter Liese MEP, has threatened to block the EU’s efforts to amend the existing legislation if the EC does not mention which countries have undermined the ETS so far. There remain foreign carriers operating intra-EU flights without paying their ETS share, including Air China (Athens – Munich) and China Eastern (Frankfurt – Hamburg) and even intra-German ones. Airbus stakeholder states – the UK, France and Germany – have surrendered to “economic blackmail” from China, which threatened to no longer buy Airbus planes if the EU carried on with its legislation. Peter Liese is pushing the EC to shorten its current 2020 deadline and revert to a full-scope ETS from 2016, if no agreement on global measures is found in ICAO. T&E commented that “Pursuing anything less than coverage of emissions in EU airspace is environmentally unacceptable. At the same time, not enforcing the existing ETS sends a clear signal to third countries that EU sovereignty doesn’t matter and it won’t advance efforts to secure agreement on global measures either.”    Click here to view full story…

 

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6 week consultation on Heathrow’s north west runway ends – criticised for not being transparent

Heathrow has been conducting a somewhat minimalistic 6-week consultation on its plan for a new runway to the north west. The questions in the consultation (only really 2 questions, with scope for further comments) are only on factors to take in to account, and whether more people should be affected by a slightly smaller amount of aircraft niose, if fewer people should be subjected to a larger amount (dispersal or concentration). The consultation is not whether those consulted want a new runway. The public consultation sessions are now ended.  The consultation did not mention the Heathrow Hub proposal for an extension of the northern runway.  A Heathrow spokesman said: “We will take your opinions into account as we look to refine our north-west runway proposal…”  Those opposed to the plans have been critical of the consultation, saying it has been neither honest nor transparent.  Heathrow has been disingenuous in making no effort to show where the landing flight paths would go, making informed comment impossible. Either way there will be more aircraft noise for many thousands of homes. Claims that the airport will have 20 – 30% more flights and be “quieter” (properly defined) are manifestly not logical.
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Hundreds attend Heathrow consultation events on north-west runway proposal

Have your say on the Heathrow consultation due to close on Sunday

Heathrow’s plans for a third runway to the north-west of the existing two

Hundreds of people from across the borough have shared their views on the north-west runway proposal at consultation events run by Heathrow.

Residents piled into two exhibition days, held at the Holiday Inn, in Brentford, and the Civic Centre, in Hounslow, last week.

The sessions were set up to provide people with the chance to learn more about the proposal, voice their concerns and meet members of the Heathrow team.

The days were part of a six-week consultation by the airport in light of the shortlisting of a new runway or a longer existing runway by the Davies Commission, which is investigating airport expansion in the south-east of England.

Nigel Milton, director of policy and public relations said: “I would like to say a big thank you to all those in the area that have taken part in Heathrow’s local consultation in the past few weeks.

“Whether you have shared your views online or attended one of the consultation events which have taken place around the airport, we are really grateful to you for taking the time to do this.

“We will take your opinions into account as we look to refine our north-west runway proposal for the consideration of the Airports Commission in May.

“Should a third runway be recommended by the Commission and approved by the Government, it is in everyone’s interest to work together to make sure our plans are developed in the best way possible.”

However the consultation has been met with some disapproval, particularly from councillor for Brentford, Ruth Cadbury, who said ‘this so-called consultation is neither honest nor transparent’.

She said: “Heathrow Airport is consulting not on whether residents want a third runway, but which of two sites north of the current airport should be chosen.

“Furthermore, they are not prepared to show where the landing paths would go.

“Both would mean extra noise for many thousands of homes.

“By my calculations the landing path would be centred over the heart of Heston, the Sky TV studios, Brentford Station, Griffin Park, Kew Bridge, the Russian Orthodox Church and the Hogarth estate.

“Heathrow airport need to be honest with the public, and with the Davies Commission, about the impact of their proposals.”

Heathrow has now hosted all 14 of its consultation events in local areas across west London.

People who did not get a chance to attend an event can still have their say on the issues most important to them through the online consultations, which will remain open until this Sunday.

Information from the public consultation will then be collated and the north-west runway proposal refined accordingly.

It will then be resubmitted in May.

http://www.getwestlondon.co.uk/news/local-news/hundreds-attend-heathrow-consultation-events-6832268

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Consultation document

(12 short pages including many maps and diagrams).

This is the entire “interactive consultation document.”

http://user-0lbfwdw.publ.com/HAL-Community-Consultation

How to respond:

People can respond online, or they can ring a number to have a phone interview. Those who receive the booklets through the door can respond on the Freepost form, or they can attend one of the public exhibitions that are planned.


 

This is the entire online consultation response form content:

Shaping Heathrow’s north west runway proposal 

A public consultation: 3 February – 16 March 2014

Question 1

What factors do you think are the most important when planning a new runway?
All the factors listed below are important to local residents to varying degrees. Your response to this question helps us understand your priorities.

Please rank your top five in order of importance from 1 to 5 (1 = most important)

Aircraft noise
Aircraft safety/risk
Air pollution
Construction impact
Flooding
Historic buildings
Jobs/local employment
Loss of homes and businesses
National economic benefits
Public transport
Range of national/international flight destinations
Road-traffic congestion
Viability of local communities
Wildlife/ecology

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Question 2

Which of the following statements best matches your attitude to noise relief from aircraft and the number of communities living beneath flight paths?

– Providing periods of significant noise relief for all communities is more important than limiting the number of communities living beneath flight paths.

– Limiting the number of communities living beneath flight paths is more important than providing periods of significant noise relief for all communities.

– Don’t know

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Question 3

How can we improve our proposal for a new runway?

Please use the space below to tell us your ideas or to mention any other factors not covered by Questions 1 and 2.

 

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There is the opportunity of saying a lot more, in response to Question 3. The document says:

Heathrow question 3

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Earlier:

Heathrow consultation starts – 140,000 leaflets distributed – as airport hopes to minimise opposition on noise increase

February 3, 2014

Heathrow airport has started its 6-week consultation, to ask people living near the airport how they can “improve” on their runway plans – and reduce opposition to it as much as possible. The airport is sending out 140,000 short (12 page) booklets, to many neighbouring boroughs, but not Richmond (where there is fierce opposition). The thrust of the consultation is on noise. It is extremely simplistic, and should not really be considered as a proper consultation. Except for people motivated to write a lot of their own text, there is no simple way to say “No, we do not support a new runway” in the consultation response form itself. There are no questions along those lines. The form only has two questions – the first asking respondents to rank a list of criteria; the second asking if people think it is more important to have fewer communities living under flight paths affected more badly, or more communities affected a bit less. There is stunningly little detail. Colin Matthews says: “This consultation is to make sure we correctly understand what local people value and that we can take their views into account as we refine our proposal.” Everyone with an interest in Heathrow and its runway plans should reply to the questionnaire, and tell Heathrow just what they think, in the space for responses in Question 3. The consultation ends on 16th March.     Click here to view full story…

 

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Heathrow to hold 6 week consultation (starting 3rd Feb) with households on their north-west runway plan

January 17, 2014

Heathrow will start a six week consultation with local households on 3rd February, lasting till 17th March. It will ask for their views on Heathrow’s own short-listed north-west third runway plan. The airport wants to get its application as acceptable as possible to locals, to give it more chance of being permitted. “The results will help Heathrow understand what is most important to local residents and will be used to refine the runway proposal before it is resubmitted to the Airports Commission in May.” The consultation will be by post, and will be sent to the 120,000 households and businesses likely to be most impacted by the proposed plans. Those outside this area will have the opportunity to share their views online. There will also be drop-in events in nine local areas, to give people the chance to ask questions and “influence the plans.” The results will be shared with the Airports Commission, as part of Heathrow’s evidence. Heathrow knows that the issue of noise is key, and they will fail in their runway plans if there is strong enough opposition by enough people, on noise. They are hoping “mitigation” measures will be enough to reduce opposition. In reality people from huge areas of London, currently hardly affected by Heathrow aircraft noise, would be affected by this runway.                                                                Click here to view full story…

Heathrow  north west runway approach path

Map above (from AirportWatch, not from Heathrow) indicates the likely approach route (orange line)  for the North West runway, from the east (on westerlies)  The runway might be 200 metres further south, if they try and save Harmondsworth Tithe Barn (see map of that option).

 

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Vote on ETS in European Parliament on 19th March on whether “stop the clock” continues to 2016 or 2020

MEPs on the European Parliament’s environment committee will next week (19th) be faced with a difficult choice on aviation and the ETS – accept a humiliating surrender to America, Russian and Chinese bullying, or risk a trade war with grave economic consequences. Last week negotiators reached a deal to exempt non-EU airlines from paying for their CO2 emissions, in deference to pressure from Washington, Moscow and Beijing.  The EU “stopped the clock” on the scheme, except for intra EU flights, and a decision on the next stage has to be made on when, and if,  the carbon emissions from flights to and from the EU can again be included. Sticking with “stop the clock” gives advantages to hub airports just outside EU airspace, such as Istanbul, at the expense of EU competitors. The Parliament is demanding that the exemption should end in 2016 rather than in 2020, and the text agreed with member states says only an ICAO agreement which reduces emissions – rather than just halting the rise in emissions – would meet the conditions to allow carbon from flights to and from the EU to continue to be excluded. The UK wants the 2020 date. If the agreement is passed in the March 19 ENVI meeting, it will be presented at the Parliament’s plenary session on April 3 for a full vote by MEPs. If passed, the regulation will come into immediate effect.
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Good 4 min 30 secs video of interview with Peter Liese explaining the situation, and how the ETS will snap back to “full scope”in 2016 if ICAO has not performed, and a key date will be May 2018, when airlines will have to pay:

Peter Liese MEP, rapporteur on Aviation in the EU ETS, talks to environment journalist Sonja van Renssen of viEUws.eu about the provisional trilogue agreement and enforcement of the scheme on non-compliant airlines:

 http://www.vieuws.eu/environment/ets-eu-pins-hopes-on-2016-for-global-airline-emissions-deal-rapporteur-peter-liese-asserts/


 

Will MEPs bow to pressure on ETS?

By Dave Keating

12.3.2014    (European Voice)

The European Union has been humiliated in its attempts to reduce emissions from aviation

MEPs on the European Parliament’s environment committee will next week be faced with a difficult choice – accept a humiliating surrender to America, Russian and Chinese bullying, or risk a trade war with grave economic consequences.

Last week negotiators from the member states and the Parliament reached a deal on the contentious issue of including international aviation in the EU’s emissions trading scheme (ETS).  In essence, the deal will exempt non-EU airlines from paying for their CO2 emissions, in deference to pressure from Washington, Moscow and Beijing, which complained that inclusion of foreign airlines in the scheme was a breach of sovereignty.

The ETS legislation, adopted in 2008, covers emissions from all flights landing at or taking off from EU airports since 1 January 2012. But in the face of international protest, the European Commission temporarily exempted flights leaving or originating beyond EU airspace, in order to give the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) time to agree a global mechanism to control aviation emissions.

In September ICAO agreed it would create a future mechanism in 2016, and the Commission decided this was enough to propose a modified rule: an exemption until 2020 for emissions outside EU airspace, leaving only emissions occurring in EU skies covered.

But non-EU countries demanded that the EU go further, exempting all emissions from flights entering or leaving the EU – even those emissions within EU airspace. EU member states have been subjected to heavy lobbying by foreign governments to change the Commission’s proposal. Airbus has also been lobbying heavily, reportedly for fear of retaliation from China.

In January the European Parliament voted to back the Commission’s airspace approach. German centre-right MEP Peter Liese, who led negotiations for the Parliament, said bowing to foreign pressure would give advantages to air hubs just outside EU airspace, such as Istanbul, at the expense of EU competitors.

MEPs were overpowered in negotiations by member states – led by France, Germany and the UK – fearful of a potential global trade war. But the Parliament is demanding that the exemption should end in 2016 rather than in 2020, and the text agreed with member states says only an ICAO agreement which reduces emissions – rather than just halting the rise in emissions – would meet the conditions to maintain the exemption.

Amending EU legislation simply because foreign powers have demanded it, even though the European Court of Justice has ruled that the law is perfectly legal under international law, is a hard pill for MEPs to swallow. Environment committee chair Matthias Groote said last week that the outcome of the committee vote next Wednesday (19 March) is “not at all certain,” and that there is a 50/50 chance the deal will be rejected. The Liberals and Greens have already said they will reject it, and the S&D is still working out its position. The ECR group of British Conservatives and their allies may vote against because they want the expiration date to remain 2020.

A rejection of the deal would result in an immediate crisis. The original ‘stop the clock’ temporary exemption expires in April, which means foreign airlines would have to pay for all their emissions for flights in or out of an EU airport unless the legislation is changed. China has promised retaliatory measures if that happens, and the United States has already passed legislation forbidding its airlines to comply.

MEPs are under significant pressure on both sides, even within the aviation industry. The European Low Fares Airlines Association (ELFA), which represents budget carriers operating mostly within EU airspace, has said it will sue the EU if the legislation is amended, because it gives an unfair advantage to non-EU airlines.

But the Association of European Airlines, which represents large European carriers which often fly out of EU airspace, is urging MEPs to adopt the compromise so that work can begin on the search for a global solution.

Given the risks from rejection, it is most likely that MEPs will have to accept defeat and vote yes to this compromise next week. But the saga has been a humiliating reminder of the lack of international respect for EU law, and the lack of member state will to defend it when under pressure.

Siim Kallas, European commissioner for transport, told a European Policy Centre event last week that the whole episode had been “a nightmare” for the EU. He put the blame squarely on member states. “We could do it only if we have a strong front of member states,” he said.

Both within the Commission and the Parliament there is a feeling that member states undermined the EU’s efforts to put pressure on ICAO to reach a global deal, and set the EU up for failure by abandoning the legislation at the first sign of trouble.

It is a lesson neither institution is likely to forget when the ETS has to be revised for the period after 2020.

http://www.europeanvoice.com/article/imported/will-meps-bow-to-pressure-on-ets-/80039.aspx

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EU states get their way as deal struck with Parliament negotiators to continue with ‘Stop the Clock’

5th Mar 2014

Negotiators from the three European institutions – the Parliament, Commission and the Council – have reached an agreement that is likely to see an extension to 2016 of the one-year ‘Stop the Clock’ (STC) suspension of the full scope of the Aviation EU ETS.

The Commission, backed by members of the Parliament’s environment committee (ENVI), supported an airspace approach that would have seen all airlines flying to and from Europe covered by the EU ETS for the portion of flights taking place in EEA airspace.

However, worried about international repercussions, a majority of EU member states – led by France, Germany and the UK – have won their fight for a continuation of STC without appearing to have made any meaningful concessions beyond a commitment to return to the full scope from 2017 if no binding agreement is reached on a global market-based measure at ICAO.

The co-decision agreement will now be put to ENVI members on March 19 before it reaches a plenary meeting of the Parliament in April for a full vote of MEPs. The Parliament’s rapporteur on the legislation, Peter Liese, believes the deal will be accepted although the ENVI Chairman, Matthias Groote, said it was only “50-50” that it would be passed by a majority of the committee.

Justifying the climbdown, Liese said a continuation of STC until 2016 and an automatic return to full scope in 2017 – ( he is pessimistic that a binding international deal can be reached by ICAO member states at the Organization’s Assembly in late 2016)  – could ultimately prove to be better for the environment in terms of aggregated emissions covered in the 2013-2020 period than the proposed airspace coverage from 2014 until 2020.

A demand by Liese and his colleagues for EU states to earmark auction revenues for climate purposes appears to have largely been rejected although text could be inserted into the revised legislation that requires states to be more transparent on how the revenues are used.

Details on proposed exemptions from the scheme for smaller aircraft operators have so far not been disclosed.  [ But see update below, exempting private jets]. 

Commented Bill Hemmings of Brussels-based NGO Transport & Environment: “With the deal, European governments have conceded again to international pressure without getting anything meaningful in return, let alone guarantee that soaring international aviation emissions will one day be tackled. Shrinking the aviation ETS to cover intra-EU flights effectively amounts to the dismantling of a European climate law.”

He urged MEPs to reject the deal – a move that could see an automatic snap back to the full scope of the EU directive.

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Update 7th Mar 2014:

Further details on the agreement have been released, including the following:

1. Member states should take no action against aircraft operators in respect of all emissions from flights to and from countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) in each calendar year from, and including, 2013 to, and including, 2016. The derogation also applies to flights to and from so-called “outermost regions” of the EU.

2. The deadline for the surrender of allowances corresponding to verified 2013 emissions from flights between EEA countries is 30 April 2015 instead of 30 April 2014, and verified 2013 emissions for those flights being reported by 31 March 2015 instead of 31 March 2014.

3. Aircraft operators will have their free allowances reduced in proportion to the reduction of the surrender obligation. As regards activity in 2013 to 2016, member states shall publish the number of free allowances allocated to each operator four months after entry into force of the new regulation.

4. The number of allowances to be auctioned by each member state in respect of the 2013-2016 period will be reduced to correspond with its share of attributed aviation emissions for flights which are not subject to the derogation.

5. On earmarking of auction revenues, member states “should” use revenues “or their equivalent in financial value” to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, for adaptation to the impacts of climate change in the EU and third countries, especially developing countries. They should also be used for funding R&D, “including in particular in the fields of aeronautics and air transport, to reduce emissions through low-emissions transport and to cover the costs of administering the Union scheme.”

6. The Commission is to report at least once a year to the Parliament and Council on progress of the ICAO negotiations “as well as on its efforts to promote the international acceptance of market-based mechanisms among third countries.”

7. Following the 2016 ICAO Assembly, the Commission is to report to both institutions “on the actions to implement an international agreement on a global market-based measure from 2020 that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from aviation in a non-discriminatory manner, including on information with regard to the use of revenues submitted by member states.” That report should include proposals in reaction to the Assembly outcome on the appropriate scope for coverage of emissions from activity to and from countries outside the EEA from 2017 onwards.

8. From 1 January 2013 until 31 December 2020, intra-EEA flights performed by non-commercial aircraft operators (for example business jet owners) with total annual emissions lower than 1,000 tonnes of CO2 – taking into account all flights to, from and within the EEA (so-called Annex 1 flights) – should be exempted.

9. Where an aircraft operator has total annual emissions lower than 25,000 tonnes, its emissions can be considered verified if determined using the approved Eurocontrol small emitters tool.

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The trilogue deal has been attacked as discriminatory between airlines by the International Air Carrier Association, which represents 28 leisure carriers mainly based in Europe. Said its Director General, Sylviane Lust: “The effects of CO2 are worldwide. Whilst the rest of the world is working towards an ICAO solution, Europe has chosen to hurt its own interests in order not to lose face.”

If the agreement is passed in the March 19 ENVI meeting, it will be presented at the Parliament’s plenary session on April 3 for a full vote by MEPs. If passed, the regulation will come into immediate effect.

http://www.greenaironline.com/news.php?viewStory=1833

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Good 4 min 30 secs video of interview with Peter Liese

Peter Liese MEP, rapporteur on Aviation in the EU ETS, talks to environment journalist Sonja van Renssen of viEUws.eu about the provisional trilogue agreement and enforcement of the scheme on non-compliant airlines:

 http://www.vieuws.eu/environment/ets-eu-pins-hopes-on-2016-for-global-airline-emissions-deal-rapporteur-peter-liese-asserts/


 

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London aircraft noise summit increases pressure for independent aircraft noise ombudsman

The group, “Let Britain Fly” organised an “aircraft noise seminar” in order to get together various speakers to discuss the issue, and the possible establishment of an independent aircraft noise ombudsman (ANO). The summit hoped to call all political parties to create the new role, in order to try to protect the welfare of people living near airports and  under flight paths. During autumn, the business group London First,  advocated the appointment of the watchdog body, and the Airports Commission recommended it, in their  interim report in December. Campaigners at Heathrow – where there is the largest aircraft noise problem – are hopeful that there may now be a new initiative, that can help break the noise deadlock. Other campaigners at airports with different noise problems have serious concerns about the ombudsman proposal, and fear that the creation of an independent noise ombudsman might be used as a means of paving the way for airport expansion, by defusing opposition. They would back a watchdog, provided he has real powers to set and enforce standards.  What people who are overflown – and troubled by plane noise – want is for less noise.  Not just liaison, consultation, action plans and empty promises.
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Summit increases pressure for independent aircraft noise ombudsman

by  SINEAD HOLLAND   ( Herts and Essex Observer)

Stansted Airport - aerial view of main terminal building
Stansted Airport – aerial view of main terminal building

The first-ever summit to discuss solutions to aircraft noise is taking place today (Tuesday, March 11).

It is being staged collaboratively by London First, Let Britain Fly and Heathrow Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise (HACAN).

Leaders representing both sides of the argument are coming together to discuss the key elements of the issue.

The focal point is a call to all political parties to create the role of independent aircraft noise ombudsman (ANO) to protect the welfare of people living near airports and participants are being invited to put their names to a campaign statement.

The timing of this initiative is critical. During the autumn, the business group London First advocated the appointment of the watchdog, winning backing from a diverse range of stakeholders, including Stop Stansted Expansion, the London Assembly, HACAN and Virgin Atlantic.

The interim Davies Commission report, published in December, echoed the call for the ombudsman role and the Government is due to respond over the coming weeks.

Gavin Hayes, director of Let Britain Fly, said: “It’s vitally important to do everything possible to enhance the quality of life of all of those who live around Britain’s airports.

“I therefore warmly welcome the commitment of all participants to work together for the wider good.

“The summit is perfectly timed. There is a golden opportunity to ensure that aircraft noise is managed more effectively, progressively reducing it and the number of people it affects.

“We believe that the Government must seize this opportunity. We therefore call on them to create the role of the aircraft noise ombudsman, and for the other main political parties to support that process.”

Commenting on the summit, John Stewart, chairman of HACAN, said: “I’m delighted that the entire aviation community is coming together for the summit. This initiative is long overdue, and therefore one which I welcome hugely.

“This is the first time that organisations from all points of the spectrum in the debate on aircraft noise have cooperated in this way to find solutions.

“That debate has for many years been challenging, complex and, regrettably, fraught. We believe that the time has come for a fresh start to efforts to break the deadlock.”

http://www.hertsandessexobserver.co.uk/News/Uttlesford/Summit-increases-pressure-for-independent-aircraft-noise-ombudsman-20140311063007.htm

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Also

Letter to Guardian from Heathrow critics & supporters asking for aircraft noise ombudsman

Date added: March 11, 2014

The noise from planes using Heathrow airport is a huge issue, affecting hundreds of thousands of people. Noise at other airports is equally a serious problem for those affected. Over decades, local communities have had little reason to trust the airports and the authorities (a recent example being the unannounced flight path trial over Warnham, from Gatwick). Aircraft noise is considered to be an unfortunate side effect of the alleged benefits of a growing aviation sector, with those affected being necessary “collateral damage” of this industry. The Airports Commission, in its interim report in December, recommended the setting up of an independent noise authority which would be able to deal with noise issues. Now a letter, supporting the establishment of an Ombudsman, has been sent to the Guardian, signed by a long list of notable people, including many opponents of a 3rd Heathrow runway. The letter hopes the Ombudsman may establish more “trust and confidence.” However, no amount of liaison, consultation etc will actually make the amount of noise diminish, which is what most people who suffer from aircraft noise actually want. There are fears that the new body will be “long grass into which difficult issues could be consigned.”

Click here to view full story…


 

See earlier- by contrast  – from GACC (Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign)

Concerns about the effectiveness of a new aviation noise authority – and the public’s trust in it

March 4, 2014

In its interim report published on 17th December 2013, the Airports Commission recommended to government “… the establishment of an Independent Noise Authority to provide expert and impartial advice about the noise impacts of aviation and to facilitate the delivery of future improvements to airspace operations.” GACC – the Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign – has responded to this suggestion with a lot of caveats. GACC would welcome the authority if its main purpose is to reduce aircraft noise, but not if its main purpose is to persuade local residents to relax their opposition to a new runway at Gatwick. Residents want the noise to be reduced, not ‘mitigating’, and not ‘reducing the number of people affected’ if that means merely making noise worse for fewer people. . There have been years of unsatisfactory complaints mechanisms on aircraft noise, and also of broken assurances from the aviation industry. “A single point for complaints, an aircraft noise ombudsman with power to order improvement or compensation, would be welcome. But we do not see this in the recommendations of the Commission’s Interim Report.” There are fears that the new body will be “long grass into which difficult issues could be consigned.” A body designed to smooth the path of a new runway, whether at Gatwick or elsewhere would be vigorously opposed.

Click here to view full story…

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 and concerns have also been expressed by SSE (Stop Stansted Expansion):

SSE also declined to sign the joint declaration although they have always supported the establishment of an independent noise watchdog provided he has real powers to set and enforce standards.

Whilst supporting the principle, SSE chose not to attend yesterday’s ‘Noise Summit’ and not to sign the joint declaration.  This was because the pro-expansion groups ‘Let Britain Fly’, ‘London First’  and ‘Runways UK’ had orchestrated yesterday’s events and SSE were concerned that they viewed the creation of an independent noise ombudsman as a means of paving the way for airport expansion – a sort of quid pro quo.

SSE are very wary of aviation lobbyists bearing gifts.  Mischievously, the press release issued after the Noise Summit yesterday quoted SSE as supporting the establishment of an independent noise ombudsman.   That is true, to the extent that SSE do support the principle.  However, SSE is not listed as one of the signatories.

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The cost of a new Gatwick runway – £50 extra per return flight

A new research study  – ‘Who would pay for a new runway’  -  examines who would pay for a new runway at Gatwick or at Heathrow. It concludes that a new runway at Gatwick would mean an increase in airport charges (landing fees, aircraft parking charges etc) per passenger from £8 at present to £33.60 – an increase of £25, or £50 per return flight.  At Heathrow the increase would be from £19 per passenger to £31.  The calculations are based on the estimate made by the Airports Commission that a new Gatwick runway would cost £10 – £13 billion. The local Gatwick campaign, GACC, say Gatwick often claim that a new runway at Gatwick would be cheaper than one at Heathrow.  But they don’t mention that the cost would need to be borne by roughly half as many passengers at Gatwick as at Heathrow.  In the past the cost of new infrastructure was met by the Government, or spread among BAA’s airports.  But now all the airports are privately owned by separate companies.  The cost of a Gatwick runway would have to be met only by the passengers using Gatwick.  £50 extra on a return flight might well cause price sensitive passengers and airlines to choose to use Stansted instead.
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The cost of a new Gatwick runway – £50 extra per return flight

10.3.2014 (GACC – Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign) 

A research study published today - ‘Who would pay for a new runway’   –  by the Aviation Environment Federation examines who would pay for a new runway at Gatwick or at Heathrow.

It concludes that a new runway at Gatwick would mean an increase in airport charges (landing fees, aircraft parking charges etc) per passenger from £8 at present to £33.60 – an increase of £25, or £50 per return flight. 

At Heathrow the increase would be from £19 per passenger to £31.  The calculations are based on the estimate made by the Airports Commission that a new Gatwick runway would cost £10 – £13 billion.  [This figure comes from the Airports Commission Interim report .  December 2013.  Paragraph 6.75 ]

The study is written by former Treasury adviser Brendon Sewill, who is chairman of the Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign, with help from Brian Ross, economic adviser to SSE, the Stansted environmental group.

Brendon Sewill said:  ‘Gatwick Airport often claim that a new runway at Gatwick would be cheaper than one at Heathrow.  But what they do not mention is that the cost would need to be borne by roughly half as many passengers.’

In the past the cost of new infrastructure was met by the Government, or spread among the passengers at all the main UK airports.  But now all the airports are privately owned by separate companies.  Politicians will not want to pay for a new runway out of public funds, and indeed any subsidy would be contrary to EU rules.  That means that the cost of a new runway at Gatwick would have to be met only by the passengers using Gatwick.

‘£50 extra on a return flight,’ Sewill added, ‘might well cause passengers and airlines to choose to use Stansted instead.’

http://www.gacc.org.uk/latest-news.php

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Airports Commission interim report says:

“6.75

The costs of expansion at Gatwick, while substantial (estimated to be between
£10-13 billion over the period to 2030, once the costs of surface access
improvements are taken into account, and with allowances for risk and optimism
bias), are lower than those of expansion at Heathrow and significantly lower than
those of any new hub airport.”

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 See also:

A new runway at Heathrow or Gatwick would mean big increases in passenger fees – New report

March 10, 2014

Who pays

The Aviation Environment Federation (AEF) has submitted a new report to the Airports Commission which casts doubt on the feasibility of building a new runway at either Gatwick or Heathrow. So far there has been little realistic discussion about who will actually pay for the proposed runways. The new study,Who Would Pay for a New Runway” by Brendon Sewill, shows that a new runway at Heathrow would be likely to mean an increase in landing fees and other airport charges from £19 per passenger now, up to £31. At Gatwick there would be a larger increase, up from £8 now to £33.60. The study points out that with all the London airports separately owned, unlike in the days of BAA, the cost will have to fall only on the passengers using that airport. If an expensive runway (and terminal) is built, the options are either that the passengers pay for it – or that it has to have public subsidy. A report for the Airports Commission, by KPMG, concluded that a new Heathrow runway would need a subsidy of around £11 billion, and a new Gatwick runway a subsidy of nearly £18 billion. However, the Government is reluctant to commit public funds, and new EU guidelines ruling out subsidies to major airports. That leaves landing charges – will passengers put up with that, or vote with their feet by using cheaper airports?

  Click here to view full story…

 

 

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Gatwick offers to pay households for noise of 2nd runway – dismissed by opponents as a “very small bribe”

Gatwick airport is on a PR and charm offensive to try to get support for a 2nd runway. This has been somewhat upset over the past two weeks by the impact on the village of Warnham of an unannounced flight path trial.  Now Gatwick airport  may have been rushed into making the offer of £1,000 per year to “all households most affected” by noise from a 2nd runway. The airport says would be equivalent to Band A Council Tax (currently £1000). Gatwick CEO Stewart Wingate said the cash would help negate some of the impact.  The airport estimate that 4,100 households would qualify for the money by 2040, using the discredited 57 decibel contour. In reality, the 57dB contour does not accurately reflect the areas where noise is annoying or causes disturbance – even the 54dB contour, as used in Europe, is an inaccurate measure. Many thousands more people – perhaps 48,000 – would need to be compensated if the 54dB contour was used. The £1,000 is a derisory figure, not even slightly compensating for loss of house value, or for loss of local amenity and quality of life.  This is a very small bribe.
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Gatwick airport offers a very small bribe!

10.3.2014 (GACC – Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign) press release

Gatwick Airport has offered an annual payment of £1,000 to about 4,000 houses most seriously affected by noise from a new runway.

Brendon Sewill, chairman of GACC, described this as ‘a very small bribe’.

–  On the measurement of noise favoured by the EU, the number of people affected by noise from a new runway, would be 48,000 (compared to 10,000 at present);[1]

–  £1,000 would be tiny compared to the loss of house values;

– The payment would not be made until after the new runway were built;

– It would do nothing to compensate anyone affected by the new flight paths currently being planned; (see below)

–  The payment would be small compared to the deterioration in the quality of life of hundreds of thousands of people – the urbanisation caused by 40,000 new houses, loss of countryside, pressure on schools, hospitals, road and rail.[3]


[1]   This figure for the 54 Lden contour is given in the GAL submission to the Airports Commission 19 July 2013, Table 8 page 31, [Page number 31, Page 39 scrolling down]  and includes  the 5,000 houses under construction in the Crawley NE sector.

http://www.gatwickairport.com/PublicationFiles/business_and_community/all_public_publications/transforming_gatwick/Gatwick_Airport_Proposals_for_additional_longterm_runway_capacity19Jul2013.pdf

[2]   See www.gacc.org.uk/latest-news

[3]   The figure of 40,000 new houses is given in a report by consultants commissioned by West Sussex County Council and the Gatwick Diamond business association.

GACC  press release.

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Gatwick airport’s press release:

Gatwick to pay ‘second runway Council Tax’ for local communities

10 March 2014 (Gatwick airport)

All households most affected by noise from a second runway at Gatwick would receive annual compensation equivalent to Band A Council Tax (currently £1000) if and when the runway becomes operational, Gatwick Airport announced today.

This represents the next stage of Gatwick’s industry leading approach to noise management at the airport (Minimise, Mitigate, Compensate). It underlines the importance that the airport attaches to addressing environmental issues and acting as a responsible neighbour.

Commenting on the proposal Stewart Wingate, CEO of Gatwick Airport, said: “Expansion at Gatwick would, without doubt, deliver many upsides for our local community in terms of jobs and investment. But we must also recognise the negative noise impacts on local people from more flights. Gatwick’s location obviously means that comparatively fewer people would be affected by a new runway. However, I believe we must do more to help those that would be affected.

“How we best compensate communities affected by major infrastructure projects is an issue facing a growing number of sectors – from aviation to energy. Our proposal would see the people most affected by expansion at Gatwick receiving monetary compensation.

“Under the scheme, we are pledging £1,000 towards Council Tax for qualifying households in the local area, if and when a second runway became operational. Our current estimate is that as many as 4,100 households (i) could qualify for this scheme and so this would provide a real and positive benefit to a significant number of people.

“Environmental issues are at the centre of the debate about runway capacity in the South East and noise reduction, mitigation and compensation are therefore at the heart of our expansion plans. This scheme will be a cornerstone of our planned package of measures for local residents.”

Gatwick’s location to the south of London means the potential impact on people is at a much lower level than at Heathrow. According to the Civil Aviation Authority, 3,650 people living in 1,600 homes around Gatwick are affected by aircraft noise today (ii). At Heathrow, on the same basis, almost 240,000 people living in 100,000 homes (iii) are impacted by aircraft noise – more than the total number of people impacted by all other major Western European airports combined.

Gatwick has long recognised that people who live near airports have concerns about noise and takes its obligations to the environment seriously. The airport is at the forefront of industry noise management initiatives, and its ongoing noise reduction scheme has already set new standards in protecting local communities against noise pollution. For example:

• Last year Gatwick became the first – and so far the only – UK airport to trial, and get permission to implement, Precision Navigation which allows aircraft to fly on much narrower flight paths rather than in wide swaths enabling aircraft to fly over areas with the least amount of people living under its flight path.

• Gatwick has also recently become the first UK airport to fully consult on modernising its airspace, which it believes could potentially reduce noise annoyance for over 65% of households currently affected, and

• Earlier this year Gatwick announced plans to roll-out one of the largest and most innovative noise mitigation schemes of any airport in the UK and across the rest of Europe, offering hundreds more local homes up to £3,000 towards double glazing and loft insulation. Over 40% more homes will be protected from noise than were covered with the old scheme.

Addressing the impact of noise on local communities will be a critical issue in winning local support and for the Airports Commission’s assessment of its short listed options. How scheme promoters address noise reduction, mitigation and compensation will be a primary focus of public debate on the benefits and impacts of a new runway being built in London and the South East.

Notes to Editors

 

(i) Gatwick Airport Limited modelling of the 2040 57 dB(A) Leq noise contour by the Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAA) Environment Research and Consultancy Division (ERCD).  [Link to this document is not given].
(ii) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/244530/lgw-2012.pdf 
(iii) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/244529/lhr-2012.pdf

 

Details of the proposed Council Tax Scheme

  • £1,000 per annum payment (indexed at CPI) to Council Tax payers resident at the time of runway opening, whose homes are within the airport’s two runway 57 dB(A) Leq noise contour.
  • This contour is the UK Government’s measure for the onset of noise annoyance. The scheme will use actual measured contours produced annually by the CAA, providing an independent benchmark, and will be updated every 5 years to reflect changes in noise performance.
  • Recognising the increased intensity and frequency of noise with a second runway, the scheme will be open to residents already within the single runway 57 dB(A) Leq noise contour.
  • We estimate that by 2040 there could be 4,100 eligible homes within the two runway contour (i).
  • Just under 100,000 households sit within Heathrow’s 57 dB(A) Leq noise contour today. (iii)
  • The scheme will not be open to residents who move into the noise boundary contour after Gatwick applies for planning permission, which would follow the Airports Commission support and Government approval.
  • The scheme will only be applicable to the existing housing stock today, and not to any new housing which might be built in the intervening period.
  • We will consult locally on this scheme if Gatwick is chosen for runway expansion by the Airports Commission, and the Government takes that recommendation forward.
  • The scheme would be in addition to any statutory compensation and blight scheme(s) we would implement if Gatwick is taken forward for runway development by the next Government.

 

About Gatwick’s new noise insulation scheme

Gatwick’s noise insulation scheme goes further than any other airport in the UK and Europe. It has reduced the noise threshold for the scheme, with the boundary line drawn flexibly to ensure entire roads and communities are included. The boundary has also been extended along the flight paths by 15km to both the east and west of the airport. This will mean that over 40% more homes are now eligible than under the old scheme.

For more information please click here.

About the London Airspace Consultation

Between 15 October 2013 and 21 January 2014, Gatwick and NATS – the UK’s leading provider of air traffic services – asked people living across Sussex, Surrey, Kent, Essex, Suffolk and Hampshire to have their say on the positioning of new flight paths in their local area.

This information will be used to help establish new routes which offer the most benefit with the least possible impact, with a particular focus on reducing the impact of aircraft noise.

Airspace above the south of England is some of the busiest in the world. This consultation is the first stage in a wider programme of proposed changes to deliver the UK’s Future Airspace Strategy (FAS), which will be legally required to come into effect in 2020.

For more information please click here.

https://www.mediacentre.gatwickairport.com/News/Gatwick-to-pay-second-runway-Council-Tax-for-local-communities-8ca.aspx

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Gatwick promises £1,000 second runway compensation

10 March 2014 (BBC)

CGI of second Gatwick runway
The proposed second runway at Gatwick is being considered by the Airports Commission
 

Thousands of households affected by noise from a possible second runway at Gatwick would be given £1,000 a year in compensation if it is built, the airport’s boss has said.

CEO Stewart Wingate said the cash, equivalent to Band A council tax, would help negate some of the impact.

It is estimated that 4,100 households would qualify for the money.

A second Gatwick runway is one of the options currently being considered by the Airports Commission.

Other options include another runway at Heathrow and an airport in the Thames Estuary.

Mr Wingate said: “How we best compensate communities affected by major infrastructure projects is an issue facing a growing number of sectors – from aviation to energy.

“Our proposal would see the people most affected by expansion at Gatwick receiving monetary compensation.”

Gatwick claims to be the UK’s second largest airport and the busiest single-runway airport in the world.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-26512998

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More on the upset caused by the unannounced flight path trial:

Villages up in arms as new Gatwick flight path shatters their peace and quiet

March 9, 2014

The Sunday Times has featured the story of the misery and upset being caused over villages in Sussex by a new trial flight path from Gatwick. The village of Warnham is particularly affected. It is a quiet village, but now has planes taking off from Gatwick thundering overhead. Some of the affected residents are the mother-in-law of Boris Johnson, who said who say the noise is so loud that it sets off baby monitors and drowns out the sound of local church bells. Also Caroline Lucas, whose family owns the 215-acre Warnham Park, with a large herd of red deer, said: “How long will future generations stay here? That’s the question you have to ask.” The 6 month trial, of which there was no notice given to local residents, is of a new departure route for planes mainly bound for southern Europe, which are now turning south earlier than they normally do. The airport says the trial is to find out if a new aircraft navigation system will allow air traffic controllers to reduce the interval between flights taking off from two minutes to one, potentially allowing more flights to take off at peak times. ie. make Gatwick even busier than now.

Click here to view full story…

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recent meeting of the Gatwick Airport Consultative Committee (GATCOM) said, discussing whether residents should be warned of the trial in advance.                             GATCOM minutes of 30th January 2014:

“It was felt that parish councils in particular should be advised of trial to enable them to respond to their constituents if problems arose. Mr. Denton would consider this but emphasised the need to obtain genuine feedback from those affected. If people were aware of the trial it was possible that they would be more alert to changes and feel obliged to comment.”     ie. don’t warn them, because they might complain.

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Francis Maude: Noise misery foreshadows Gatwick second runway

March 8, 2014

Francis Maude, MP for Horsham, has received a great number of letters and emails from distressed residents in Warnham and Rusper, in recent weeks, about the new flight path trial over them. They are saying they are being plagued by a constant stream of noisy aircraft taking off from Gatwick towards the west starting at 6am. Many people have complained directly to Gatwick Airport, the CAA and NATS – but have yet to be satisfied on a number of points. Most residents were not aware of any minimal consultation about the changes before they started. Francis Maude is asking for much more detail about the trials. These include on what criteria will the trial be assessed? Why does it need to continue for six months? and How is it being monitored? He says the misery currently being experienced by local residents foreshadows what would be a permanent feature of life in the area if a 2nd Gatwick runway were to be built. The amount of opposition to this trial suggests it is not being successful. Francis Maude says: “I have made my opposition to a second Gatwick runway many times in public and private, and am happy to reiterate this now.”

Click here to view full story…

 

GACC calls for flight path trial to stop due to anger and outrage in the village of Warnham

March 5, 2014

The Argus: Angry Warnham residents

A new flight path for take-offs from Gatwick airport has caused outrage in the parish of Warnham, near Horsham. Designed as a 6-month trial to enable more aircraft to take-off from the Gatwick runway it has already caused a wave of protest. A member of the GACC (Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign), Sally Pavey, who lives in Warnham, says: ‘The tranquillity of our 14th century, conservation village has been lost and we seem powerless to do anything about it. Everyone is up in arms as we are woken at 6.00 am with an aircraft overhead every few minutes. Living in Warnham has turned into a nightmare!’ GACC has called for the trial to be stopped. The new route is causing an unacceptable degree of upset and maximum anger. It is just a small foretaste of what is to come if a new runway were to be built. “With a new runway the new flight paths would bring anger and misery to perhaps 30 or more towns and villages. And that would be permanent, not just for 6 months. Warnham is a wake-up call for why we should all oppose a new runway.’

Click here to view full story…

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Gatwick hopes that by giving another 1,000 homes double-glazing it will defuse opposition to a 2nd runway

Date added: February 3, 2014

Gatwick airport continues to spend a lot of money in attempting to get backing for its 2nd runway and soften up opposition. It has now set up a new scheme – starting on 1st April – to give people overflown more double glazing and house insulation, to attempt to cut some of the noise. That, of course, does not work when the windows are open, or when people are outside – in a garden, or elsewhere. Gatwick says it is expanding its noise insulation scheme, to cover over 1,000 more homes across Surrey, Sussex and Kent. People will be able to apply for up to £3,000 towards double glazing for their windows and doors as well as loft insulation; ie the scheme could cost Gatwick some £3 million in total. They are now taking the 60 Leq contour, rather than the 66 Leq contour, as in the past – hence increasing the catchment area. They are also extending the area covered by 15km to both west and east of the airport. Stewart Wingate said “We understand that the public’s tolerance to noise is much lower than it was”… Gatwick is pushing hard to compare the noise problem it causes with the much larger noise problem caused by Heathrow, where flight paths go over many more densely populated areas. They ignore the issue of the low level of background noise around Gatwick, compared to background noise in a city or large town.

Click here to view full story…

 


 

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More to get Gatwick Airport noise grants

3 February 2014 (BBC)

Aircraft taking off at Gatwick Airport
The airport said it was aware the public’s tolerance to noise was lower than it used to be

Owners of more than 1,000 homes in Kent, Sussex and Surrey are eligible to claim noise insulation grants, Gatwick Airport has announced.

The grants of up to £3,000, now available to more than 40% more homes, will go towards double glazing as well as loft insulation.

The boundary for the scheme has been extended by about 10 miles (15km) to the east and west of the airport.

Noise level boundaries have also been lowered for those qualifying.

Platform opened

Stewart Wingate, Gatwick’s chief executive, said: “We understand that the public’s tolerance to noise is much lower than it was, which is why we are now extending our noise insulation scheme.”

The extended noise insulation programme will begin on 1 April.

The airport has also unveiled a £53m new platform and concourse which will allow fast trains from London Bridge and Victoria to travel through its railway station more quickly.

Platform 7, which will open to passengers next week, was funded by the airport and Network Rail.

It was officially opened by transport minister Baroness Kramer.

Signalling has also been upgraded at the station in preparation for improvements to the Thameslink service from 2018.

Mr Wingate said it was an important part of a push for a second runway at Gatwick.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-26016757

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Comment from an AirportWatch member:

Neither GAL nor the Government have sorted out compensation for the problem of noise and overflight for the existing runway yet.   These have got  worse due to the creeping changes from 1999 to now. They need to sort out the existing problems, compensate those already suffering from plane noise  from Gatwick, before thinking about their second runway.

The offer from Gatwick, with no press release or proper announcement, looks like a panicked reaction by the airport to the trouble they have caused in the Warnham area.

 

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Analysis by NATS for Airports Commission shows a 4th Heathrow runway would cut flight path capacity elsewhere

An article in the Times says a submission by NATS, the air traffic control service to the Airports Commission warns of the problems that would be caused if a 4th (not only a 3rd) runway was built.  The Airports Commission said in its interim report, that it considers another new runway might be “needed” by 2050, if the first new runway capacity has been filled by then.  Even one new runway is marginal, at best, for carbon emissions. [A 2nd new runway cannot be built and used, keeping within UK carbon targets]. There are fears that if Heathrow was allowed a 3rd runway, it would effectively become a Trojan Horse for a 4th runway – Heathrow airport has said that from 2030 a decision would have to be taken on a 4th. The effect on flight paths would mean fewer planes could use the other London airports. The Times says a 4th runway at Heathrow would reduce the combined capacity of Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Luton, Birmingham, City and Southend airports by 9%. It would cut capacity relative to a 3-runway Heathrow by 18%  due to the disruption to flight paths to the other main airports.
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Fourth runway at Heathrow ‘would block flight paths to other airports’

  • Those against Heathrow expansion said the analysis was a ‘game-changer’ in the debate – Toby Melville/Reuters
By Philip Pank, Transport Correspondent (the Times)
March 10th 2014
Full article at
Extracts:
Those against Heathrow expansion said that the analysis, seen byThe Times, was a “game-changer” in the debate over airport expansion as it undermined the long-term case for doubling the size of the country’s biggest airport.
…….
Sir Howard Davies, head of the commission, said that a third runway could be built by 2030 but it would be full by 2050.  [Airports Commission interim report, December 2013    This says on Page 12: “The Commission’s forecasts also indicate that there is likely to be a demand case for a second additional runway in operation by 2050 or, in some scenarios, earlier.” ]
…..
The Nats report, submitted to the commission last November,  [the report can be found at  Long term options: consultancy reports  The NATS report is at  NATS Advice on airspace November 2013 ] concluded that construction of a fourth runway would cut the maximum possible number of flights into the main airports to 1,550,000 from 1,680,000. Flights at Gatwick, Stansted and Luton would be reduced by 50%. London City would see a 25% reduction.  [See tables copied below – Page 41 of the NATS report].
3rd and 4th Heathrow runway info from NATS
…..
In its submission, Heathrow said that a third runway would meet the demand for air travel to 2040 but that from 2030 a decision would have to be taken on a fourth.  [The Heathrow submission to the Airports Commission in summer 2013  which is at  http://www.heathrowairport.com/static/HeathrowAboutUs/Downloads/PDF/long-term-hub-capacity-options_LHR.pdf   said:  “Heathrow regards any longer term forecasts to 2050 to be too uncertain to be a reliable planning tool at this stage. The uncertainty over long run demand makes adding a third runway at Heathrow an attractive option, as a fourth runway could be added in the longer term if it was ever required.”   See also story below from 2008] 
….
The Nats analysis highlights ….. potential limitations of a new hub in the Thames Estuary. It could increase total airport capacity by just 6%, because of the closure of Heathrow, City and Southend airports. However, if runways were tilted to run northeast-southwest, the airport would increase total capacity by 24%.
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Going back to 2008, Colin Matthew’s predecessor, Stephen Nelson refused to rule out the possibility of a 4th Heathrow runway :

Further Heathrow expansion ‘not ruled out'; could want forth runway and seventh terminal

23.01.08  (UK Airport News Info)

The chief executive of Heathrow Airport operator BAA told the London Assembly yesterday that he could not rule out the need for more ‘capacity’ at the worlds busiest international hub, beyond its current expansion proposals. The comments raised the fears that a fourth runway and a seventh terminal could eventually wanted at Heathrow.

The assembly’s environment committee met to consider the environmental impact of a proposed plan to add a third runway and a sixth terminal at Heathrow. This plans would require the village of Sipson to be bulldozed and 50 communities and towns could suffer increased noise. They will have an impact on the London boroughs of Ealing, Hammersmith and Fulham and the boroughs of Slough, Windsor and Maidenhead, Spelthorne and South Bucks District Council.

Local councils, campaigners and industry leaders attended the meeting, where the chief executive of BAA, Stephen Nelson, said that unlike his predecessor, who ruled out a further expansion in 1994 when plans for Terminal 5 were discussed, he would not commit to anything.

Mr Nelson was asked whether he was saying that there could be a fourth runway and seventh terminal. He replied: ‘It would be inappropriate for me to speculate on whether there would be a further case for expansion beyond 2030.’ He said he did not want to give ‘hostages to fortune’ by saying that the third runway would be the last big expansion. However, he told the environment committee that the proposed sixth terminal and third runway were the extent of the company’s current plans.

Current growth trends suggest that the third runway will be full long before 2030 and Heathrow will once again face losing market share to airports on the Continent. Schiphol, near Amsterdam, has five runways and Paris Charles de Gaulle has four.

John Stewart, founder and chairman of the Heathrow Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise (Hacan), said: ‘After making so many false promises in the past, BAA has decided to be honest about the fact that it is keeping its options open for further expansion. We fear that they will first lengthen the third runway and then build a fourth.’

The London Assembly committee is expected to send its recommendations on the current proposals to the government on February 26, ahead of the deadline for comments on the plans the next day.

http://www.uk-airport-news.info/heathrow-airport-news-230108.htm

 

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A new runway at Heathrow or Gatwick would mean big increases in passenger fees – New report

The Aviation Environment Federation (AEF) has submitted a new report to the Airports Commission. It casts doubt on the feasibility of building a new runway at either Gatwick or Heathrow.  So far there has been little realistic discussion about who will actually pay for the proposed runways.  The new study, “Who Would Pay for a New Runway” by Brendon Sewill, shows that a new runway at Heathrow would be likely to mean an increase in landing fees and other airport charges from £19 per passenger now, up to £31.  At Gatwick there would be a larger increase, up from £8 now to £33.60.   The study points out that with all the London airports separately owned, unlike in the days of BAA, the cost will have to fall only on the passengers using that airport.  If an expensive runway (and terminal) is built, the options are either that the passengers pay for it – or that it has to have public subsidy. A report for the Airports Commission, by KPMG, concluded that a new Heathrow runway would need a subsidy of around £11 billion, and a new Gatwick runway a subsidy of nearly £18 billion. However, the Government is reluctant to commit public funds, and new EU guidelines ruling out subsidies to major airports.  That leaves landing charges – will passengers put up with that, or vote with their feet by using cheaper airports? 
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A new runway at Heathrow or Gatwick would mean big increases in passenger fees

MONDAY 10TH MARCH (Aviation Environment Federation)

Who pays

The Aviation Environment Federation (AEF) is today (10 March) submitting a new report to the Airports Commission which casts doubt on the feasibility of building a new runway at either Gatwick or Heathrow.

The new study, “Who Would Pay for a New Runway by Brendon Sewill, and published by the AEF3, shows that a new runway at Heathrow would be likely to mean an increase in landing fees and other airport charges from £19 per passenger to £31.  At Gatwick there would be a whacking increase from £8 to £33.60.

Sewill said:  “There has been unending discussion of where a new runway should be built. But it seems that no one has stopped to ask who will pay?”

The study points out that the situation today, with each of the main airports separately owned, differs from that in the past, in that the cost of any new runway would fall only on the passengers using that airport.

The choice is simple: a new runway will require the passenger to pay through increased charges or the increase will need to be offset by a public subsidy. A report by KPMG concluded that a new Heathrow runway would need a subsidy of around £11 billion, and a new Gatwick runway a subsidy of nearly £18 billion.  But with the Government reluctant to commit public funds, and new EU guidelines ruling out subsidies to major airports, the most likely answer would be a substantial increase in ticket prices which would drive airlines to use other airports.

So, as the study concludes, “If the punters won’t pay, the runway won’t fly”.

Tim Johnson, Director of AEF which published the report, commented: “The high environmental price of a new runway is well known but to this day the aviation industry has argued that the economic benefits would far outweigh it. This report shows that it won’t just be the environment that pays but also either the passenger or the tax payer. A new question arises: Who will actually benefit?”

 Link to the report:

 http://www.aef.org.uk/uploads/Who_would_pay_for_a_new_runway_1_2_3.pdf

 

The report’s author, Brendon Sewill, has a degree in Economics from Cambridge.  He has been an adviser in the Treasury and to the British Bankers Association (in the days when banks were respectable).  He has also been a member of the National Trust Council.  Since 1990 he has been chairman of the Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign (GACChttp://www.gacc.org.uk/.

The AEF is the Aviation Environment Federation – a national organisation working to ensure the aviation industry takes full account of its environmental and social impacts.

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The cost of a new Gatwick runway – £50 extra per return flight

March 10, 2014

A new research study – ‘Who would pay for a new runway’ – examines who would pay for a new runway at Gatwick or at Heathrow. It concludes that a new runway at Gatwick would mean an increase in airport charges (landing fees, aircraft parking charges etc) per passenger from £8 at present to £33.60 – an increase of £25, or £50 per return flight. At Heathrow the increase would be from £19 per passenger to £31. The calculations are based on the estimate made by the Airports Commission that a new Gatwick runway would cost £10 – £13 billion. The local Gatwick campaign, GACC, say Gatwick often claim that a new runway at Gatwick would be cheaper than one at Heathrow. But they don’t mention that the cost would need to be borne by roughly half as many passengers at Gatwick as at Heathrow. In the past the cost of new infrastructure was met by the Government, or spread among BAA’s airports. But now all the airports are privately owned by separate companies. The cost of a Gatwick runway would have to be met only by the passengers using Gatwick. £50 extra on a return flight might well cause price sensitive passengers and airlines to choose to use Stansted instead.

Click here to view full story…

 


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 One section of the report is copied below:

 

Don’t forget the competitors

Because Heathrow exercises an hypnotic or magnetic attraction for airlines, an increase in charges from just under £20 to just over £30 per head would probably not prevent the new runway from soon reaching full capacity.

At Gatwick, however, the situation would be very different. An increase from £8 to £27 per head would come as an unpleasant shock for both airlines and passengers.

Stansted and Luton will have plenty of spare slots throughout the 2020s and 2030s. Both airports could offer much more attractive rates – at present at Stansted, as at Gatwick, they average about £8 per passenger.  A number of airlines would be tempted to move to Stansted, or at least operate new routes from Stansted. Certainly many of the new airlines which the Commission expect to be using Gatwick would be likely to choose Stansted instead.

Therefore the assumption by the Airport Commission that by 2030 Gatwick will be operating at 70% of the capacity of its two runways – that is 56 million passengers a
year – may well be too high.

The reason why the Commission’s logic is flawed is that they have relied on Department for Transport forecasts which, developed in the era before airports started competing with each other, do not take market forces into account. All airports are assumed to have similar operating costs, and the need to charge passengers the cost of building a new runway is not taken into account.

Gatwick is expected to reach full capacity on its existing runway sometime between 2020 and 2025, handling around 40 million passengers.    GAL (Gatwick Airport Ltd) say that they
hope to open the new runway perhaps as early as 2025. Taking into account intense competition from Stansted and Luton, it seems unlikely that the number of passengers in 2030 would be more than 45 million.

Simple arithmetic shows that if the cost of a new runway shared between 56 million
passengers would be £27 per passenger, then the cost shared between 45 million
would work out at £33.60.

Thus, if a new runway were to be built, every passenger passing through Gatwick in future would have to pay something like £33.60, instead of £8 at present.

On a return trip the cost would be around £67, instead of £16.

For a family of four going on holiday the cost would be £269, instead of £64.

These results are not plucked out of the air; they are based on the figures provided by the Airports Commission – with the only difference that they take into account the likely competition from Stansted and Luton.

easyJet gets heebie-jeebies

In case anyone might still be tempted to think that these figures are an exaggeration, it is good to find that they are lower than the estimate made by easyJet, Gatwick’s largest airline. In October 2013 Carolyn McCall, Chief Executive of easyJet, said:

‘Our greatest concern is [that] the CAA has handed GAL a licence to print
money and has significantly enhanced the value of the future sale of GAL by
private infrastructure fund GIP. Using GAL’s own figures passengers could be
paying £28 more per flight for years in advance of the opening of a new £9
billion runway without any real oversight by the CAA.’

£28 more, i.e. on top of the present charges of £8 per passenger. And what is giving Ms McCall the heebie-jeebies is not only the prospect of a four-fold increase in airport charges but also the thought that GAL is to be allowed to put up the price before they build the new
runway.

No wonder easyJet has not been jumping up and down with enthusiasm.

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Government wants new runway pushed through in next Parliament, with no chance to vote against it

Interview with Patrick McLoughlin, in the Spectator, by James Forsyth. It states: “But McLoughlin has a plan that may stop airport expansion being dragged into the next general election campaign.    In opposition, David Cameron was against expanding Heathrow. But in 2012, the government asked Howard Davies, an economist, to do a report on what runways Britain needs. He has been told not to publish his final conclusions until after the general election.   So I ask McLoughlin: does that mean there’ll be no general election between the report and the beginning of the building process? “Sitting here now, that would be what I would hope.”  Residents who’ll have to put up with a new runway, or even a new airport, will thus never get a chance to vote against it.”
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Full interview in the Spectator  http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/9152091/paddy-power/   is copied below:

Patrick McLoughlin on HS2, rebellion and Ukip

The Transport Secretary and former miner admits High Speed 2 won’t be through parliament by the next general election
8 March 2014  (Spectator)
McLoughlin

It was, perhaps, inevitable that heading to interview the Transport Secretary I would end up stuck in traffic — so by the time I reached Patrick McLoughlin’s office, I was running a few minutes late. The normal punishment for tardiness is to be left languishing outside a minister’s office. But McLoughlin does things differently. When I arrive, his door is open and he urges me to come straight in.

As befits a man who used to earn his crust as a miner, McLoughlin has a big physical presence. He is broad-shouldered and the buttons on his shirt sleeves look close to bursting as they try to contain his large forearms. His physical appearance is just the most obvious of the many traits that make McLoughlin stand out in a cabinet dominated by Oxbridge graduates. His life has not been one of privileged ease.

McLoughlin was born into a mining family in Stafford in 1957. He had to grow up very young when his father died — leaving him, one of his elder sisters and his mother at home. He tells me that his mother went out to work at 6.30 a.m., so I ask if his sister got him dressed, given that he had just started primary school. He looks at me like I’m slightly odd, before chuckling and declaring, ‘No, we got ourselves ready.’ The conservative notion of self-reliance was something he learned young.

McLoughlin remarks ruefully that ‘I never really knew my father at all. He died the day after my seventh birthday, so 1 December 1964.’ When I ask more, McLoughlin replies, ‘I never really talk about my father, simply because I didn’t really know him. I mean the idea that you have this great relationship with your father by the age of six…’

But by the time McLoughlin went to work at Littleton Colliery in Staffordshire, where his father and grandfather had worked before him, he was already a Tory. This did not go down well with all his colleagues, who would tell him that his father would ‘be turning in his grave’ to know his son’s politics. McLoughlin says he developed a stock response: ‘Well, it would be good to see him still having some activity.’

He says that his fellow miners, though, were not all left-wingers. ‘Most of them were Tory-minded, but they just voted Labour. So if you talked to them on taxation, immigration, defence, the monarchy — they were far more right-wing than I probably am. But they just voted Labour.’

Conversation turns, as it so often does when talking with a Tory cabinet minister, to the threat of Ukip. McLoughlin is dismissive of the idea that his party should panic if (as expected) it is beaten by Ukip in the European elections in May. Chasing Ukip support misses the point, to his mind. ‘I don’t aim at Ukip voters, I aim at Labour voters, I aim at Liberal Democrat voters.’ Warming to his theme, he continues, ‘I’m not going to aim myself at 10 per cent or 12 per cent, I’m going to aim myself at the 60 per cent who don’t vote Conservative.’

McLoughlin, certainly, is not as Eurosceptic as many of his Tory colleagues. When I ask him if he’d vote ‘out’ in a referendum held today, like his cabinet colleagues Michael Gove and Philip Hammond, he replies: ‘I would be very reluctant to see us come out of the European Union. I think there’s a lot that is very positive about our membership, about what the single market offers.’ His answer makes me wonder how McLoughlin, who was Cameron’s chief whip for almost seven years, thinks the Tory party can be held together in the event of an in-or-out referendum. When I ask him if Tory frontbenchers should be allowed to campaign on different sides, he stonewalls. ‘That will be a decision to be taken closer to that time,’ he says.

The Prime Minister told this magazine in December that he ‘envisages’ all of his front bench voting the same way in the referendum. But this question remains a very delicate one.

McLaughlin is adamant that the days of expecting total loyalty from MPs are over. ‘The idea that somehow they are all going to be silent followers of one person is something that’s gone.’

Even as Transport Secretary, he can’t escape the subject of party discipline. There are a bevy of Tory MPs opposed to having HS2 run through their patch or a new runway built in their backyard. But McLoughlin has agreed to tolerate dissent. ‘You have to accept that certain people, certain constituencies are heavily impacted by a piece of national infrastructure,’ he says. ‘Those MPs have got a duty to stand up for their constituents and make the case for their constituents. You’ll never hear me criticise that.’

McLoughlin admits that the HS2 legislation won’t be through parliament before the next election: ‘I think one has to accept that perhaps through all its stages within the next 12 months is slightly ambitious.’ It will, he says, have ‘started its parliamentary progress’. When I ask if it will be done, he answers ‘no’.

This means that it could still become an election issue — Ed Balls, the shadow chancellor, makes occasional forays against it. But McLoughlin has a plan that may stop airport expansion being dragged into the next general election campaign.

In opposition, David Cameron was against expanding Heathrow. But in 2012, the government asked Howard Davies, an economist, to do a report on what runways Britain needs. He has been told not to publish his final conclusions until after the general election.

So I ask McLoughlin: does that mean there’ll be no general election between the report and the beginning of the building process? ‘Sitting here now, that would be what I would hope.’ Residents who’ll have to put up with a new runway, or even a new airport, will thus never get a chance to vote against it.

Talking to McLoughlin, one is struck by how calm he is. In a 45-minute interview, he doesn’t once raise his voice. Even the subject of Liberal Democrats and coalition, one that sends many of his ministerial colleagues into a fury, doesn’t rile him. Instead, he simply observes that ‘there was always going to be this tension in the last 12 months’. Such calmness is going to be much needed in the coming weeks and months as Cameron and company try to work out a way to keep the Tory party together — through and beyond the next election.​

This article first appeared in the print edition of The Spectator magazine, dated  & 

http://www.spectator.co.uk/features/9152091/paddy-power/

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. There has been a lot of pressure, on all three political parties, to agree to accept the Airports Commission findings in advance, whatever they say.

None of the parties have agreed, so far, to do so.

There have been articles like

Political parties must honour airports report

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/10521524/Political-parties-must-honour-airports-report.html

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and

comment from ABTA:

“Whichever option emerges as the preferred solution will need cross-party political support. What businesses, investors and customers want to see now is commitment from all three parties to accepting the analysis and recommendations of the Davies Commission”

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