Hertfordshire County Council objects to Luton Airport expansion, due to negative environmental impacts

Proposals to expand Luton Airport have been described as “madness” by a Hertfordshire county councillor.  The council unanimously voted to oppose further expansion of Luton airport at a meeting on 26th November, as they realised the expansion plans to increase to 32 million passengers a year by 2039 (from almost 17m now) would harm the environment. The airport’s proposals – to be decided by Luton Borough Council – include a second terminal north of the runway, an extensive new airfield infrastructure and a third station. There is a huge conflict of interest, as Luton Council both owns the airport, and decides on its planning applications.  At a time of growing realisation of the climate crises the planet faces, and with no realistic ways to reduce the carbon emissions from aviation, the industry should NOT be given permission to expand. The growth plans of airports across the country add up to a massive expansion in the number of flights and passengers, way above what could be compatible even with aiming for net-zero carbon by 2050 (and that is at least 20 years too late).The motion also called for Luton’s plans to be deferred until the new government has set out the Aviation Strategy, for the UK aviation sector, taking into account the advice of the CCC.  
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Hertfordshire County Council objects to Luton Airport expansion

By Daisy Smith   (St Albans Review)
2nd December 2019

Proposals to expand Luton Airport have been described as “madness” by a county councillor.

Hertfordshire County Council unanimously voted to oppose further expansion of the airport at a meeting last Tuesday (November 26).

Councillors said the expansion to cater for 32 million passengers a year by 2039 would harm the environment.

The proposals – which will be decided by Luton Borough Council – include a second terminal north of the runway, an extensive new airfield infrastructure and a third station.

Liberal Democrat councillor for Colney Heath and Marshalswick John Hale said: “Expanding the airport to 32 million passengers a year when we are trying to reduce carbon emissions is madness.

“The impact on residents in terms of increased noise and pollution is unacceptable.

“I am pleased the motion got the support of all parties at the council.”

The motion also called for any proposed plans to expand to be deferred until the new government has responded to a letter from national body Committee on Climate Change.

The letter calls for a reduction in airport expansion plans in order to reduce emissions from aviation.

Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate Daisy Cooper welcomed the decision made by the council.

She said: “The expansion of Luton Airport would not only have a massive impact on the climate, but also on the people of St Albans who live under the flightpath.”

London Luton Airport Ltd is holding a second consultation on its proposals. Deadline for comments is December 16.

The airport said the expansion could deliver more than 16,000 new jobs and bring £1.3 billion per year to Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire.

It also said a new funding package will be made to provide £7.5 million to authorities outside of Luton that will be most impacted by the airport.

It added it is making steps to reduce its carbon emissions.

Luton Airport corporate director Graham Olver added: “The airport is aware that neighbouring authorities take a deep interest to expand the airport.

“The airport is keen to hear the views of as many people as possible and would encourage people to attend one of its remaining six consultation events.”

To share your views, visit: futureluton.llal.org.uk

https://www.stalbansreview.co.uk/news/18074877.hertfordshire-county-council-objects-luton-airport-expansion/

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Future Luton

https://futureluton.llal.org.uk/

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The main local community group is LADACAN

(Luton and District Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise)

http://www.ladacan.org/

They say:

Luton Airport’s owners want a massive further increase in capacity by adding 14 million more passengers on top of the 18 million a year already using the Airport, so they can make even more money at the expense of quality of life for all of us.

We all have until 16th December to submit hard-hitting objections to their plans.

Local people are very concerned about the proposed expansion because it would:

  • cause 77,000 extra journeys a day on congested roads and rail services
  • increase local pollution and contribution to climate change by over 50%
  • add a further 80,000 flights a year to our already noisy and crowded skies

Click the links below to find out more about what YOU can do to help stop this:

1) Find out more by attending one of the local roadshows >> Roadshows

2) Submit a strong objection and spread the word to others >> Objections

3) Email us at info@ladacan.org to go on the mailing list

THIS IS IMPORTANT AND WE NEED TO ACT NOW !!

OTHER NEWS:

Luton Airport wants to break yet another planning condition
Not content with breaching its night noise planning condition, Luton Airport now wants to exceed its 18-million passenger limit, without delivered the mitigations which went hand-in-hand with the growth permission. >> Airport wants to exceed passenger limit

Updated application to exceed noise contour limits
Planning Condition 10 is designed to keep Luton Airport growth in balance: more flights, but quieter planes. The airport has rushed the growth ahead of the quieter planes, and now wants the rules set aside. Latest update >> Object to Condition 10 Variation

What’s Condition 10 Variation all about? Click here to visit our FAQ page

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This is LADACAN’S advice on responding to the consultation:

LADACAN opposes FutureLuToN proposals

We have until 16th December to register strong opposition to LLAL’s expansion plans.

LADACAN believes the FutureLuToN project is designed to make more cash for LLAL at the expense of quality of life and the environment in the whole surrounding area. There are a number of reasons why this Nationally Significant Infrastructure Project would not be in the public interest, and we have summarised them below.

If you agree, and want to OPPOSE this project, you need to review our objections, put them in your own words and add your own additional points (perhaps your reaction to what you saw at one of the LLAL roadshows, or your experience from the expansion project which has been happening over the last 7 years) and email them as objections.

This is probably less risky than being suckered by their online application form when ends to manipulate responses to make them look as if they are in support.

GROUNDS FOR OBJECTION – COMMUNITIES WILL BE ADVERSELY IMPACTED

FutureLuToN is bad for communities which already suffer the unmitigated impacts of the recent doubling of capacity – on the busiest routes an additional 90% flights a year. To cram in more passengers, the aircraft have got bigger and noisier, and the number of quieter-engine planes has been offset by introducing more of the larger noisier ones.

TO OBJECT: If you agree with that point, you can copy this email address or click on it to email futureluton@llal.org.uk and base your objection in your own words on our points below:

“I strongly oppose any additional expansion of capacity at Luton Airport on the grounds that it is not in the public interest for the following reasons:

300-450 planes a day already fly at very low altitude over Hertfordshire causing noise, loss of sleep and negative health effects which impact people’s wellbeing. None of effects of doubling capacity from 9 to 18 million passengers between 2013 and 2019 have been mitigated: planes are still held low for up to 16 miles, aircraft have got larger and noisier, the Airport has breached its noise contour limits since 2017.

All of this has seriously degraded quality of life in Hertfordshire, over which all of Luton’s arriving and departing aircraft must fly.

Luton Airport has no control over the complete UK Airspace redesign being delivered in the next few years, other airport expansions such as Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted and unknown Brexit effects. It is madness to consider any further expansion plans until we see the outcome of these vital external influences.

Luton is simply trying to jump on the bandwagon of projections for airport capacity which are out of date and unjustifiable in today’s climate. “Making best use of the runway” is not an adequate justification for adding 14 million to the 18 million passengers a year at this Airport so that Luton Borough Council can make yet more money.

The government’s Aviation Policy Framework requires the benefits of airport growth to be balanced with mitigations for the environmental impacts. The current expansion project has taken all the benefits but delivered no balancing mitigations. Night flights have doubled in the past 5 years from 8,000 to 16,000 per year and the night noise contour limit has been exceeded for 3 years.

Since 2013, Luton Airport had doubled its capacity and delivered huge revenue increases BUT: planes are still held low for up to 16 miles; the fleet has become noisier because the 5% slightly quieter neo aircraft have been offset by 5% more of the larger, louder Airbus A321 and Boeing 777 types; flight paths have remained fixed in an out-of-date airspace design.

The current expansion project was due to run until 2028 and should be required to continue until then with no further additional capacity even being considered until all of the noise mitigations have been delivered and all of the existing noise planning conditions satisfied including a reduction of noise contours and a reduction of noise violation limits.

Name, Address, Postcode”

GROUNDS FOR OBJECTION – CLIMATE WILL BE ADVERSELY IMPACTED

FutureLuToN is bad for climate change given the strong effect which aviation has not just from high-level pollutants but contrails which cause additional clouds. The Climate Change Committee has written to government clearly stating that aviation growth must be at least halved to reach net zero by 2050 – the bare minimum we must do to survive.

TO OBJECT: If you agree with that point, you can copy this email address or click on it to email futureluton@llal.org.uk and base your objection in your own words on our points here:

“I strongly oppose any additional expansion of capacity at Luton Airport on the grounds that it is not in the public interest for the following reasons:

DfT aviation demand forecasts in 2017 pegged Luton at 18 million passengers until 2050. In 2019 the Climate Change Committee wrote to government saying that airport expansion must be slashed by at least 50% in order to meet the commitment to net zero carbon emission growth by 2050. Yet Luton’s expansion plan ignores both these facts.

Aviation is one of the most energy and carbon intensive forms of transport, whether measured per passenger km or per hour travelling. In the UK, aviation’s share of emissions is predicted to grow from around 6% today to 25% by 2050, even if the sector is successfully capped at level of 37.5 MtCO2 (equivalent to 2005 levels) as been recommended by the Committee on Climate Change.

Aircraft emit CO2, NOx and harmful particulates while taxiing on the ground and while airborne. The most recent evidence indicates that other non-CO2 effects due to release of high-altitude NOx and formation of contrail clouds could double the warming impact of aviation.

Newer engines are only about 15% more fuel efficient. Official UK forecasts predict annual fleet carbon-efficiency improvements of less than one percent between now and 2050.

Luton Airport has already doubled in capacity in just the last 7 years. It is not appropriate for it to continue this trajectory because no proven and effective mitigations for noise, pollution and increased carbon emissions have been delivered.

Name, Address, Postcode”

GROUNDS FOR OBJECTION – ROAD AND RAIL NETWORKS ARE INADEQUATE

FutureLuToN is bad for commuters because the additional 14 million passengers will cause on average 77,000 additional journeys to and from the airport each day, double that during peak season, clogging road and rail services and causing more pollution. Luton has a very poor track record of passenger use of public transport.

TO OBJECT: If you agree with that point, you can copy this email address or click on it to email futureluton@llal.org.uk and base your objection in your own words on our points here:

“I strongly oppose any additional expansion of capacity at Luton Airport on the grounds that it is not in the public interest for the following reason:

Surface transport by road and rail to and from Luton Airport is busy and often very congested, with no east/west public transport provision. An extra 30,000 passenger rail journeys a day would degrade our already inadequate rail services.

In just the last 7 years, 9 million additional passengers a year have already been added to the road and rail networks feeding Luton Airport, which equates to more than 80,000 passenger journeys a day allowing for drop-off, at busy times.

There is no east/west rail connection to Luton, and the east/west road links are country roads. The main M1 north/south link is heavily congested at busy times and gridlocks if an incident occurs. Trains are often standing room only at Harpenden and further south in the rush hour, and from London going north during the evening peak.

Name, Address, Postcode”

GROUNDS FOR OBJECTION – THE PROPOSER HAS BROKEN TRUST

FutureLuToN is bad for confidence in balanced growth – the airport has taken all the benefits of the recent expansion but failed to deliver better routes, increased altitudes, reduced noise, a quieter fleet, and no evidence that the claimed jobs have materialised. The entire airspace in the south-east is due to be redesigned and until that happens nobody can be sure where these proposed 220,000 flights per year will actually go.

TO OBJECT: If you agree with that point, you can copy this email address or click on it to email futureluton@llal.org.uk and base your objection in your own words on our points here:

“I strongly oppose any additional expansion of capacity at Luton Airport on the grounds that it is not in the public interest for the following reasons:

Luton Airport is owned by Luton Borough Council, its Local Planning Authority, via a private company LLAL which is governed by a board made up of officers and members of the Borough Council, yet is not publicly accountable.

Robin Porter is the CEO of Luton Borough Council (which sets and has failed to enforce a breach of Luton Airport noise planning condition 10 caused by rapid growth). Robin Porter is also now the CEO of LLAL (which currently receives £55 million per year from the airport operators and benefits directly from airport growth). In 2014, LLAL set up a financial incentivisation scheme to stimulate rapid growth at Luton Airport (see p16 of the London Luton Airport Ltd 2016 annual accounts).

Since then, the airport capacity has grown at unprecedented rate, with numbers of passengers doubling in just 7 years, flights up by 40% overall, and yet no balancing mitigations have been delivered. Departures are still held low for up to 16 miles because expansion has rushed ahead of airspace modernisation. Noise impact has increased year-on-year since 2013 because expansion has rushed ahead of fleet modernisation. Night flights have doubled from 8,000 to 16,000 in 5 years and the night noise contour planning condition has been breached since 2017 with no enforcement.

This unbalanced expansion is entirely at odds with the government’s Aviation Policy which states that the benefits of aviation growth must be shared with communities. Over the past 7 years expansion at Luton, driven by LLAL through financial incentivisation, has delivered significant cash benefits to the airport owners, worse environmental impacts for local communities through increased noise, emissions and congestion,and no mitigation. 8 years remains of that project and the owners need to be constrained to deliver redesigned airspace, continuous climb, an overall quieter fleet, and noise and emissions reduction to redress the imbalance.

Even though the decision about future expansion at Luton will be taken by the Planning Inspectorate, the past history of expansion shows that Luton Borough Council has proved ineffective in dealing with the conflict of interest arising because it receives significant cash dividends from the airport but at the same time has a responsibility to protect residential amenity. The fact that it has not enforced against the breach of noise planning condition 10 which was predicted in 2016 and was at least partly due to the  rapid growth incentivisation by LLAL, highlights the conflict.

Name, Address, Postcode”

BEWARE: if you do decide to fiull in their online response form, the questions are worded so that you can easily be suckered into appearing to agree with the proposals. For example, how do you answer the following question if you don’t think they should build a new Terminal on a park:

“Do you have any comments on our proposed park, that would replace Wigmore Valley Park?”

We would recommend prefixing the answer to every response by “I strongly oppose any further capacity expansion at Luton Airport, and I want to see the owners and operators focus on delivering mitigations and abiding by all the current planning conditions.”

See http://www.ladacan.org/llal-consultation-on-futureluton-proposals/

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Local campaigners, AXO, encourage local residents to respond to the Southampton airport expansion consultation

There is a planning application consultation by Southampton Airport, that closes on 23rd December. The airport has published plans for a 164-metre runway extension.  The planning application, lodged with Eastleigh Borough Council, is the first phase of its growth set out in its “masterplan” which it charmingly calls (oxymoron) “A Vision For Sustainable Growth.”  The application is likely to be considered by the council on 21st January 2020.  Local opposition group, AXO (Airport Expansion Opposition) Southampton is urging people to read the application, and submit their comments. There are serious concerns about road congestion, and increases in air pollution – as well as the inevitable increase in noise. The longer runway would mean larger aircraft could use it. AXO warns that the application should not be decided before the CAA’s Airspace Change consultation process is completed, as this may change significantly the impact on residents under or near the flight path. It also should not be decided until the government has finalised its Aviation Strategy, for all UK aviation, expected in early-mid 2020, when it has taken into account the new legal situation for aviation carbon emissions, with a net-zero target for 2050.

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  • Airport expansion needs to be considered on a regional/national level rather than at local level – expansion of Heathrow would draw custom away from regional airports, and the impact of expansion at other regional airports will impact on passenger flows through Southampton Airport
  • The expansion would lead to increased traffic generation with associated congestion and air pollution as well as air pollution from the flights themselves. The airport makes some very optimistic assumptions about its ability to increase use of public transport as a means of getting to the airport. In reality, rail cannot take much increase so it is likely the majority of traffic arriving at the airport will be on our already congested roads. The policy of Eastleigh BC to prioritise the Chickenhall Road link and effectively dismiss the ‘Eastleigh Railway Chord’ [to link the airport to Portsmouth and the East with greater ease] makes a mockery of the airport MD’s advertising of its rail links.
  • There will be increased noise for those under the flight path. At present over 5600 local people experience noise levels of 55dB and above – this is twice the loudness of 45dB recommended by the World Health Organisation. The number of people affected will increase with airport expansion.
  • Decision on this application should be delayed until after the Airspace Change consultation process is completed, as this may change significantly the impact on residents under or near the flight path.
  • Eastleigh Borough Council has declared a climate and environmental emergency. Airport expansion will lead to increased carbon dioxide emissions and is simply incompatible with addressing this climate emergency. The Airport’s own estimate is that carbon emissions will rise on average by 350,000 tonnes per year. For comparison, homes, industry and road traffic in the entire Borough of Eastleigh is responsible for 610,000t per year. No amount of presumed economic benefit can justify this level of increase in carbon emissions. There is no way of offsetting this level of emissions, and the airport is proposing mitigation for only the (already small) carbon emissions during the construction phase and for its own operations (current plans are for only 6,000 tonne reduction.
  • Neil Garwood (airport MD) has stated that only 2% of CO2 emissions were due to aviation. This is an absolute minimum figure that applies to global emissions. The UK government itself acknowledges that the current UK aviation emissions are 7% and set to go to 25% by 2050 – when aviation CO2 emissions are likely to be the single greatest offender in the UK. You should know this, because it has been reported extensively on the BBC – as have the recommendations by Lord Deben (the Chair of the Government Committee on Climate Change) that everyone’s appetite for air travel should be curbed and that airport expansion needs to be curtailed.
  • The expansion would lead to increased traffic generation with associated congestion and air pollution as well as air pollution from the flights themselves. The airport makes some very optimistic assumptions about its ability to increase use of public transport as a means of getting to the airport. In reality, rail cannot take much increase so it is likely the majority of traffic arriving at the airport will be on our already congested roads. The policy of Eastleigh BC to prioritise the Chickenhall Road link and effectively dismiss the ‘Eastleigh Railway Chord’ [to link the airport to Portsmouth and the East with greater ease] makes a mockery of the airport MD’s advertising of its rail links.
  • The economic benefits are overstated. The Airport promises 500 new jobs on the site, yet its last masterplan in 2004 promised an extra 391 jobs by 2015 – in fact there were 54 fewer. Its own figures show that nearly 80% of passengers are local people, so the effect on tourism from incoming visitors is limited. The percentage of flights taken for business has fallen. Moreover, in a time of climate emergency we should not be basing our economy on expansion of a sector that needs to be reduced.
  • Aviation expansion is a national issue, as we have a climate. Airport expansion therefore needs to be considered on a regional/national level rather than at local level for example, expansion of Heathrow would draw custom away from regional airports, and the impact of expansion at other regional airports will impact on passenger flows through Southampton Airport. These decisions should not be made locally on a case by case basis by the local authority that each airport happens to be located in, but should be decided nationally.
  • Decision on this application should be delayed until after the Airspace Change consultation process is completed, as this may change significantly the impact on residents under or near the flight path.

For more details from AXO, see

https://axosouthampton.wordpress.com/2019/10/09/reasons-for-objection-eastleigh/

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AXO say:

Why we’re campaigning

Whilst accepting the need for a small regional airport at Southampton, we acknowledge that the Climate Crisis means we must all fly less.


What can you do?

1) Object to Eastleigh Council

The planning application for airport expansion has been submitted [application number F/19/86707] (If this link doesn’t work you enter the number on the planning register ‘simple search’ box).

The consultation period ends on the 23/12/19 so time for reading the application, the associated documents (the devil is in the detail) and commenting is limited. The application is likely to be considered by the Eastleigh Local Area Committee (ELAC) at its meeting on 21st January 2020 (7pm).

Don’t have time to read the planning application? We have! Read our summary of concerns that you may wish to use in your objection.

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See earlier:

Southampton airport submits runway extension plans

Southampton airport has published plans for a 164-metre extension to its runway.

The planning application, lodged with Eastleigh Borough Council, is the first phase of growth outlined in the airport’s masterplan – recently re-named A Vision For Sustainable Growth.

The airport says extending the runway by 164 metres within its existing boundaries will allow it to increase passenger numbers from two to three million per year, “significantly” increase route choices and allow aircraft to reach further-afield destinations.

It would bring destinations in Scandinavia, the Eastern Mediterranean and Eastern Europe within reach, Southampton airport said.

Managing director Neil Garwood said: “Our plans will make the airport resilient to changes in the aviation market as the longer runway permits year-round viability for an increased number of airlines.

“The longer runway will enable the airport to increase its financial contribution from £160 million to £400 million per year, create over 500 new jobs, and bring huge gains in connectivity and choice for our region.

“Our development plans have been carefully prepared by a project team including ecologists and technical experts, sensitive to the needs of the local community, including comprehensive noise and air quality management plans.

“The airport has nearly four million people in its catchment area, and we firmly believe enabling them to fly from their local airport and taking tens of thousands of needless car journeys off of our already congested roads is the most sustainable way to fly.

“In construction terms, the runway extension is relatively small, but the benefit it will make to our region’s connectivity is significant.”

Southampton airport has pledged to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030, for “emissions within the airport’s control” and has owed to invest in the latest technology to maximise the use of sustainable power sources and developments such as electric aircraft.

http://www.travelweekly.co.uk/articles/350446/southampton-airport-submits-runway-extension-plans

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Almost 2,000 people sign petition against Southampton Airport expansion plans

About 1,900 people have signed a petition opposing the expansion of Southampton Airport. The local opposition campaign, Airport eXpansion Opposition (AXO), will be asking Southampton Councillors not to back plans to extend the airport’s runway by 164 metres.  AXO members will present the petition to councillors at a full council meeting. The plans to extend the runway and increase the number of flights will increase carbon emissions, and are contrary to the council’s plans to cut CO2 locally.  The airport will submit its expansion planning application to Eastleigh Borough Council. AXO said that if Southampton is serious about declaring a climate emergency, the airport expansion should not be permitted. Airports and their backers try to use the argument that it is better for people to fly (as they assume people will continue to do, in growing numbers….) from a local airport, citing the carbon emissions of their trip to/from another larger airport. Those emissions are generally small compared to those of the flight itself. And the aim of having a local airport is to get people to fly more, as it is more convenient.  Net effect – more flights, more carbon. And more noise and local impacts around the airport.

Click here to view full story…

Local opposition growing to expansion plans by Southampton airport

A group within Southampton Friends of the Earth has set up a campaign to oppose Southampton Airport expansion. Despite the Government’s recent commitment to achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, there are many airport expansion applications across the UK. This expansion cannot enable the aviation sector to meet even its current, easy, carbon target – let alone the much more stringent one required for a zero-carbon Britain by 2050. The airport will probably submit its planning application to extend the runway by 170 metres to Eastleigh Borough Council in the next few weeks. The scoping report and Master Plan have received approval in principle from Southampton City Council. Twyford Parish Council has objected, due to a proposed increase of flights over the village. Eastleigh Greens are likely to be objecting as well.  Friends of the Earth Southampton are currently putting together a petition to Southampton City Council to ask them to re-think their support for airport expansion, given that the Government is asking for net zero carbon by 2050. Campaigners started a group here to oppose the proposed expansion but it has not got a name yet. People interested can get in touch via the local FoE group foesoton@gmail.com

Click here to view full story…

 

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Heathrow growth – election briefing (one page) from the No 3rd Runway Coalition – check your candidates’ views

The No 3rd Runway Coalition has put together a simple one-page briefing on Heathrow and its proposed new runway, to help people quiz their parliamentary candidates, and check they know the real facts. The Coalition says: “Supporting Heathrow Expansion comes at the expense of the regions and to the UK as a whole.  Here’ s why it should be opposed.” The briefing deals with the Economic costs, the carbon implications, noise, air pollution, transport impacts, and connectivity. Lots of key points, including on economics:  ” The Government’ s own economic analysis found that once all negative impacts are monetised, a third runway could bring net NEGATIVE economic benefits to the UK overall in the long term.  There is no explicit job model and no clear job creation analysis included in the Airports National Policy Statement. Many of the few jobs created will be low-skilled and short term.  The costs of the project are now expected to rise to over £31bn, increasing Heathrow’s debt from £11bn (2014) to over £40bn in 2028. This could still increase further.” On noise: “Data from the CAA reveals that 2.2 MILLION people would experience an increase in noise from an expanded Heathrow.”

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GENERAL ELECTION 2019 BRIEFING – Heathrow 3rd runway

Supporting Heathrow Expansion comes at the expense of the regions and to the UK as a whole.  Here’ s why it should be opposed.

ECONOMIC COSTS

  • The Government’ s own economic analysis found that once all negative impacts are monetised, a third runway could bring net NEGATIVE economic benefits to the UK overall in the long term.
  • There is no explicit job model and no clear job creation analysis included in the Airports National Policy Statement. Many of the few jobs created will be low-skilled and short term.
  • The costs of the project are now expected to rise to over £31bn, increasing Heathrow’s debt from £11bn (2014) to over £40bn in 2028. This could still increase further.

CLIMATE CHANGE

  • Heathrow is already the biggest single source of carbon emissions in the UK and expansion will add an extra 8-9 megatonnes of CO2 per year. Thus, a third runway is not compatible with the UK’ s legally binding climate targets.
  • The Committee on Climate Change has advised the Government to limit growth in passenger demand to 25% between now and 2050. The Government currently anticipates twice this level of passenger growth.
  • While the CCC model assumes 31 megatonnes of CO2 by 2050 from aviation, the Government’ s forecasts are that with Heathrow expansion, UK aviation emissions would be as high as 40 megatonnes annually by 2050.
  • Consequently, growth would need to be curbed at all other UK airports if a third runway is built in order for the UK not to breach its carbon targets.

AIR POLLUTION

  • The Government accepts Heathrow expansion would have a “ significant negative ” effect on Air Quality.
  • Government has provided no evidence to show how Heathrow can expand and comply with legal limits and there are currently no enforcement methods should Heathrow not meet legal requirements.
  • The area around Heathrow is the second major hot spot for nitrogen dioxide (NO2) pollution in London, with breaches of legal limits having been recorded close to the airport for many years.

NOISE

  • Expansion would result in an additional 285,000 flights each year or over 700 extra flights per day.
  • Data from the Civil Aviation Authority reveals that 2.2 MILLION people experience an increase in noise from an expanded Heathrow.
  • Transport Select Committee concluded that 323,684 people will be newly affected by noise from Heathrow.
  • Hundreds of thousands of school children across the South East are already exposed to aircraft noise above 54 decibels, the sound level threshold which has a negative effect on children ’ s behaviour, memory and learning.

TRANSPORT IMPACTS

  • Expansion would result in a total of 175,000 additional daily trips on local transport networks.
  • Heathrow has to increase the proportion of passengers accessing the airport by public transport from 40% today to 50% in 2030 and 55% in 2040. However, it has only increased this figure by 1% since 2009.
  • It is unclear what the cost to the taxpayer of the road and rail infrastructure will be. Estimates of these are up to £18bn, which could easily overrun. Heathrow has only committed to contributing £1bn.

CONNECTIVITY

  • Regional Airports will lose 17 million passengers by 2050 if Heathrow expands.
  • Transport Select Committee found that expansion at Heathrow would result in 170,000 fewer flights at regional airports by 2050.
  • The UK Government currently funds three Public Service Obligations (PSOs) into London airports.
  • The total annual subsidy in 2017 for PSO’ s was £10,564,194. The average annual cost of existing PSOs in 2017 was £480,191. 50% of this cost is met by local authorities.

 

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300th Frankfurt Monday demo against aircraft noise – 1,000 people -.  “Only when no one comes, is it over!”

Back in October 2011 the Frankfurt airport 3rd runway opened. It was greeted with huge anger, because residents had not been informed how much new noise there would be, and that there would be noise where there previously was none. Huge protests started on Monday evenings (airports are public property in Germany, so protests can happen). These carried on with often as many as 1,000 people each week. People were devastated by the noise battering they were being subjected to. Now, 8 years later, the protesters have had their 300th protest, again with perhaps almost 1,000 people present. They say they will not give up, until there are no more protesters. “Only when no one comes, is it over.” Their complaints have not been addressed, about noise or particulate air pollution, or the health issues people are suffering – including depression. The airport is continuing to expand, with a new terminal. Its opponents now hope the increasing awareness of carbon emissions from aviation, with campaigns like Fridays for Future, will help put pressure on Frankfurt airport. There is a new campaign against domestic flights. 
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Slightly odd Google Translate version of this German story:

300th Frankfurt Monday demonstration against aircraft noise.  “Only when no one comes, it is over!”

11.11.19

“Deutschland fliegt nicht” means  “Germany does not fly”

Giving up is out of the question for the aircraft noise opponents: About eight years after the first protest, their 300th Monday demonstration took place at Frankfurt Airport. There are plenty of unfulfilled demands.

The participants would like to have spared the anniversary: Monday, people are coming to the Terminal 1 of Frankfurt Airport with posters for about eight years. They protest against the aircraft noise, ultrafine dust and the further expansion of the airport. Now the aircraft noise opponents demonstrated for the 300th time. Around 550 people counted the police. Thomas Scheffler, spokesman for the Alliance of Citizens’ Initiatives (BBI), spoke of more than 1,000 participants.

Frankfurt Airport is located in the center of the Rhine-Main conurbation, with hundreds of aircraft taking off and landing daily. This is felt by many people in the surrounding area whose houses are located in particular in the entry lanes. The circle of those concerned extends far beyond Frankfurt and Offenbach out to the neighboring Rhineland-Palatinate around Mainz. From there, cabaret artist Lars Reichow traveled to the demo on Monday evening and addressed the participants.

Demo was already bigger

At the end of 2011, when the new northwest runway went into operation, resistance had “increased explosively,” says Scheffler. At times even several thousand people came to the demos. Then it was a little quieter. The recently started construction of Terminal 3 caused new displeasure , the opponents fear thereby a further increase of the aircraft noise.

Lately, according to Scheffler, around 250 people have regularly come to the airport for the Monday demonstration. The demonstrators outraged because the new runway had led to an even greater aircraft noise. Not only the ultrafine dust endangers the health , but also the noise. He could cause cardiovascular problems and even depression.

More than a demand

For years, the BBI has called for a stop to the expansion of the airport and an extension of the no-fly ban. Currently, this is between 23.00 and 5.00 clock, which was then set in the construction of the Northwest runway. In addition, the Alliance wants the flight movements to be reduced every year and the Northwest runway to be shut down. The aircraft noise opponents are now hoping for an upswing through the climate debate. A new action, which was presented in the evening, is aimed at short-haul flights.

The initiators of the “Germany-flies-not” campaign are calling on people to refrain from private and professional domestic flights during the week from 10 to 16 February 2020. A photo campaign in Terminal 1 is planned – on a “do-nothing-do” sofa. A photo will be displayed on one of the world’s largest screens in Times Square, New York. Afterwards, the sofa, which is over two meters wide, travels through Germany. At the beginning of December there will be a sofa concert at Frankfurt Airport.

Minister is impressed

The operator of the Frankfurt airport does not disturb actions like these. “We take our responsibility for passive and active noise control in the vicinity of the airport very seriously,” said a Fraport spokesman. Hesse Transport Minister Tarek Al-Wazir (Greens) is impressed by the persistent commitment of the activists. “We’re ultimately pursuing the same goal,” he said. Hesse was able to do a lot within its capabilities – for example, with the seven-hour noise break, during which individual railways are temporarily not used, thus temporarily relieving neighboring municipalities of noise or the upper limit of noise.

For critics like Scheffler that’s not enough. The years of resistance had not been in vain, even if the construction of the new terminal, for instance, was a shadow over Monday’s demos. The most important success was that the subject of aircraft noise and particulate matter pollution is firmly anchored in public discourse today. And climate change movements such as “Fridays for Future” rekindled the debate surrounding the effects of air traffic. And the Monday demos? “Only when no one comes, it’s over.”

https://www.hessenschau.de/wirtschaft/fluglaermgegner-geben-nicht-auf-die-300-frankfurter-montagsdemo,fluglaerm-demo-frankfurt-100.html

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Video:

https://vimeo.com/374703530/4ab1c50783  video of part of the protest.

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There was also the launch of the “Germany does not fly” …”Deutschland fliegt nicht” campaign

 

DEMONSTRATION AGAINST CLIMATE CHANGE

Germany does not fly?

Photo: © Gegenwind 2011 Rhein-Main eV / PR Newswire New York

Photo: © Gegenwind 2011 Rhein-Main eV / PR Newswire New York
With the new campaign “Germany does not fly”, a nationwide campaign to waive domestic flights will be launched in February 2020. Campaign start is already next Monday at the Frankfurt airport.

“Germany Grounded”, freely translated “Germany does not fly”, “Deutschland fliegt nicht” was the message that flickered in New York’s Times Square on October 31 in big letters on the Reuters scoreboard and was seen by thousands of people in the world metropolis. This was the highly ambitious starting signal for the initiative launched by aviation noise opponents from the Rhine-Main area “Germany is not flying”, which will cause a sensation nationwide from February 2020. The aim of the campaign is to get as many people as possible to refrain from flying.

At least since the world-wide Fridays for Future protests, a debate about travel behaviour in Germany has flared up. Frequent flying is becoming more and more in the focus, because air travel damages the climate much more than bus or train travel. Although only about ten percent of the earth’s population has access to the luxury of flying, it accounts for five percent of global CO2 emissions. At nitrogen and water vapour emissions, the proportion is even higher. Germany’s largest airport also plays an important role: it handles 35 percent of domestic flights. Overall, Frankfurt Airport is one of the 15 largest airports in the world, transporting around 70 million passengers a year. Before the construction of Terminal 3 began, the last big step towards the airport extension was the opening of the Northwest Runway in 2011.

He also called the initiators of the campaign “Germany does not fly” on the plan, eight years ago the non-profit associations Stop-Fluglärm.de, headwind 2011 Rhein-Main and the initiative climate, environmental and noise protection in aviation founded and since then demonstrating with great perseverance on Monday evenings at Frankfurt Airport. After demonstrating 6,000 participants on 4 February 2012, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) tested to what extent higher departure angles for noise avoidance are possible and made an adjustment from 3 to 3.2 degrees.

Next Monday the 11.11. the aviation noise opponents propose a new chapter. During the 300th Monday demonstration in Terminal 1 of Frankfurt Airport, as part of the “Germany does not fly” “Deutschland fliegt nicht”  campaign, flying people are to be convinced that they will be able to forego their private and business domestic flights at the latest in the action week in February.

Furthermore, it will be presented on Monday evening “when, where and how the action will reach Germany’s airports and cities by February 2020,” said Rolf Fritsch von Gegenwind 2011. In order to generate as much attention as possible, not only companies, associations, institutions and politics but also prominent “opinion leaders” should be convinced.

Thus television presenter Joko Winterscheidt and former Olympic champion Britta Steffen have publicly commented on their flight renouncement. On 11.11. The Monday demo also receives support from cabaret artist Lars Reichow, whose performance rounds off the program.

Unlike, for example, Extinction Rebellion, which was planning to block the airspace at Heathrow Airport in London with a drone blockade, [it never happened] the aviation noise activists resort to more lenient persuasive methods: “Our appeal is directed to human reason, it should encourage thought and help “Habits change,” it says in the call.

“Flying sustainably does not mean flying,” says Hans-Peter Huppert von Gegenwind in 2011, and sees himself strengthened in Chinese philosophy: “Since Confucius, “do-nothing-together “has been a strong, non-partisan and well-tested instrument.” the “Do-Nothing-together” sofa will be revealed on which the first non-fliers will be presented. This will be photographed in January 2020, among others, before the Chancellery. The initiators are expressing their disappointment at the (not yet) made changes by the politicians. Their concept: putting responsibility in the hands of individuals rather than waiting for prohibitions, ordinances and laws.

>> Official campaign start, 11.11., Frankfurt Airport, Terminal 1, from 18 o’clock Demonstration, from 18.15 Performance cabaret artist Lars Reichow, 18.40 Presentation of the campaign and online-circuit of www.deutschland-fliegt-nicht.de

https://www.journal-frankfurt.de/journal_news/Panorama-2/Demonstration-gegen-den-Klimawandel-Deutschland-fliegt-nicht-34883.html
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See earlier:

The 200th Frankfurt airport Monday Demo (Montagsdemo) against the noise will be on 30th January

The 4th runway at Frankfurt was opened in October 2011. Due to re-alignment of flight paths, with thousands of people either newly overflown, or with more flights than before, there was uproar. The airport had not felt it necessary to warn people, or consult about the noise. Several thousand people started to congregate in the airport terminal every Monday evening, for a protest demo. (The airport buildings are public property, so the airport cannot prevent people gathering.). The 100th Monday demo was on 20th May 2014, when a group from the UK attended. Now the 200th Monday demo will take place on Monday 30th January, and a large crowd is expected. Politicians from the local area and from the region, as well as for Berlin, will be attending. The demands of the protesters are ultimately that the runway is closed down (though that is an ambitious, or unrealistic hope….) but they want no night flights from 10pm to 6am, no further airport expansion, and no 3rd terminal. Work to build the 3rd terminal started in October 2015, and the airport hopes it will open (first phase) in 2022. It is an astonishing achievement that Frankfurt residents have organised 200 Monday protests, all attended by many hundreds of people – sometimes several thousand. The demos are possible because people are so upset and angry about the noise burden that has been inflicted on them, reducing their quality of life.

Click here to view full story…

The 3rd terminal

In 2009, the German government decided to create third terminals for both Frankfurt Airport and Munich Airport, in order to handle expected passenger flows of 90 million in Frankfurt by 2020 and 50 million in Munich by 2017.

The new terminal is scheduled to be built by Fraport, south of the existing terminals on the grounds of the former Rhein-Main Air Base. The new Terminal 3 is to accommodate up to 25 million passengers and will feature 75 new aircraft positions when completely constructed. An extension of the SkyLine people mover system is planned to connect the new terminal to Terminals 1 and 2 and the airport train stations.

In August 2014, the city of Frankfurt granted building permission for the first phase of Terminal 3. The groundbreaking for the new Terminal took place on 5 October 2015. Its first phase, consisting of the main building and two of the planned four piers, is planned to open by 2022 and will be able to handle 15 million additional passengers per year. Total costs are estimated at €3 billion.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frankfurt_Airport#The_new_main_terminal


Residents around Frankfurt hold their 150th huge Monday evening protest against aircraft noise

On Monday 28th September, the 150th Monday evening protest against aircraft noise, due to the new runway, took place at Frankfurt airport. The new 4th runway was opened in October 2011, to the north west of the airport, and caused not only new flight paths but changes to existing flight paths. People had not been expecting the noise problem to be so bad. As soon as the runway opened, residents starting protesting against the noise – that was stopping them sleeping, reducing their quality of life, preventing them enjoying relaxing outside under flight paths, and reducing the prices of their homes. They started protests in the airport Terminal 1 (almost) every Monday evening. These are attended by between about 600 and 3,000 people. That is an astonishing achievement, and manifestation of real anger and determination by the thousands affected by plane noise. They are concerned now that the protests are seen to be becoming routine, and there is some appetite for more radical action, especially now that work is due to start very soon on a deeply opposed 3rd airport terminal. The style of protesting may perhaps now change. In German airport buildings are public property, so protesters are entitled to congregate in the terminal.

Click here to view full story…

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The Labour, LibDem, Conservative, Green party and SNP manifestos – bits on aviation

The election manifestos for the LibDems, Labour, and the Green Party are not available. They all have short sections on aviation. Labour comments (disappointing) include:  “Any expansion of airports must pass our tests on air quality, noise pollution, climate change obligations and countrywide benefits. We will examine fiscal and regulatory options to ensure a response to the climate crisis in a way that is fair to consumers and protects the economy.” LibDem comments include: “Reduce the climate impact of flying by reforming the taxation of international fights to focus on those who fly the most, while reducing costs for those who take one or two international return fights per year, placing a moratorium on the development of new runways (net) in the UK, opposing any expansion of Heathrow, Gatwick or Stansted “. The Greens include: “We will lobby against the international rules that prevent action being taken to tax international aviation fuel. … Ban advertising for flights, and introduce a Frequent Flyer Levy (FFL)to reduce the impact of the 15% of people who take 70% of flights. This FFL only applies to people who take more than one (return) flight a year, discouraging excessive flying…  Stop the building of new runways.” Conservatives say nothing of any consequence, avoiding mention of carbon.
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Liberal Democrats:

● Reduce the climate impact of flying by reforming the taxation of international fights to focus on those who fly the most, while reducing costs for those who take one or two international return fights per year, placing a moratorium on the development of new runways (net) in the UK, opposing any expansion of Heathrow, Gatwick or Stansted and any new airport in the Thames Estuary, and introducing a zero-carbon fuels blending requirement for domestic fights.

Manifesto link

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Labour

Labour recognises the Davies Commission’s assessment of pressures on airport capacity in the South East. Any expansion of airports must pass our tests on air quality, noise pollution, climate change obligations and countrywide benefits. We will examine fiscal and regulatory options to ensure a response to the climate crisis in a way that is fair to consumers and protects the economy.
Manifesto link
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Green Party

> Apply a Carbon Tax on all fossil fuels, as outlined above in the ‘Green New Deal for energy’ section, which will increase the cost of petrol, diesel and shipping fuel, as well as on aviation fuel for domestic flights. Domestic flights will also lose their VAT exemption and there will be an additional surcharge on domestic aviation fuel to account for the increased warming effect of emissions release at altitude. We will lobby against the international rules that prevent action being taken to tax international aviation fuel.
> Ban advertising for flights, and introduce a Frequent Flyer Levy to reduce the impact of the 15% of people who take 70% of flights. This Frequent Flyer Levy only applies to people who take more than one (return) flight a year, discouraging excessive flying.
> Stop the building of new runways and all increased road capacity, saving thousands of acres of countryside every year and protecting people from the harm of increased air pollution and traffic danger.
Manifesto link

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Conservatives

Parliament has voted in principle to support a third runway at Heathrow, but it is a private sector project. It is for Heathrow to demonstrate that it can meet its air quality and noise obligations, that the project can be financed and built and that the business case is realistic. The scheme will receive no new public money. More broadly, we will use new air traffic control technology to cut the time aircraft spend waiting to land, reducing delays, noise nuisance and pollution. We will also build on Britain’s pioneering work in electric and low-carbon flight.
Manifesto link

The SNP

We all know that aviation contributes to climate change. But we also know that many of Scotland’s remote and rural communities rely on flights.

We do not believe that aviation can simply be the preserve of the better off. We believe we must find solutions that allow all of Scotland’s communities to flourish…

We are committed to making the Highlands and Islands the world’s first net zero aviation region by 2040, with trials of low or zero emission flights, including electric planes, starting in 2021. The SNP believes aviation emissions should be counted within national emissions and targets. Aviation emissions in Scotland count towards our carbon reduction targets and the same approach should be taken across the UK.

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Scientists say rules on noise pollution, including aircraft noise, should be tightened to protect wildlife

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Noise pollution rules should be tightened to protect wildlife, say scientists

Researchers examined more than 100 studies on the impact of human-produced noise

Noise produced by human activities should be better regulated to protect wildlife, say the authors of a study exposing how sound pollution affects myriad creatures from fish to birds.

“For example in bats, they try to locate their prey via acoustic cues,” said Dr Hansjoerg Kunc, the co-author of the research from Queen’s University Belfast. “If you have the noise in the background they can’t really hear that, so they have to fly longer and invest more time and energy to find their food.”

Writing in the journal Biology Letters, researchers examined more than 100 studies on the effect of noise on a large variety of animals, from molluscs to mammals.

The studies were based on experiments in which different aspects of the animals’ behaviour or other measures, such as changes in hormone levels, were recorded before and after exposure to noise. The size of any shift from pre-noise behaviour was then calculated on a scale. The latest research took all of these calculations and put them together for six groups of animals, including fish and birds.

The results reveal that human-produced noise affects all six groups of animals considered, encompassing a wide range of species. While some studies showed greater effects than others, analysis carried out by Kunc and his team found this is not down to genetic closeness or the type of species.

“Thus, the significant response to noise can be explained by most species responding to noise rather than a few species being particularly sensitive to noise,” the authors wrote. They added that noise was important from a conservation point of view because it meant efforts to reduce the impact must take into account a host of species within different ecosystems.

Kunc said noise “can change the species composition of an area, and then of course lose the function of an ecosystem.”

The team said it was highly probable that studies have underestimated the impact of noise, but cautioned that their research did not examine whether the effects were beneficial or detrimental to species. Such considerations, they added, were complex – for example, noise that disrupts hunting could benefit prey while creating difficulties for predators.

Even where some animals benefitted, that did not mean noise should not be tackled, since the majority would experience negative effects and it could cause disruption of ecosystems, said Kunc.

Andy Radford, a professor of behavioural ecology at the University of Bristol who was not involved in the study, said particular species or populations might face different impacts – while some may be able to move away from the noise, for example, others may not, while animals might tolerate stress better than others. What’s more, even plants can be affected – for example if pollinators move away because of noise.

However, Radford said there was cause for optimism. “Unlike with, for example, chemical pollution, if a noise source moves away or is switched off, then nothing lingers in the environment itself,” he said.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/nov/20/noise-pollution-wild-life-better-regulation?

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Published:

Anthropogenic noise has become a major global pollutant and studies have shown that noise can affect animals. However, such single studies cannot provide holistic quantitative assessments on the potential effects of noise across species. Using a multi-level phylogenetically controlled meta-analysis, we provide the first holistic quantitative analysis on the effects of anthropogenic noise. We found that noise affects many species of amphibians, arthropods, birds, fish mammals, molluscs and reptilians. Interestingly, phylogeny contributes only little to the variation in response to noise. Thus, the effects of anthropogenic noise can be explained by the majority of species responding to noise rather than a few species being particularly sensitive to noise. Consequently, anthropogenic noise must be considered as a serious form of environmental change and pollution as it affects both aquatic and terrestrial species. Our analyses provide the quantitative evidence necessary for legislative bodies to regulate this environmental stressor more effectively.

Footnotes


See also

Twitter storm: noise pollution creates havoc for birds, study shows

Human activities could be affecting reproduction and even normal social behaviour

Fiona Harvey Environment correspondent (Guardian)

Thu 20 Jun 2019

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jun/20/twitter-storm-noise-pollution-creates-havoc-for-birds-study-shows

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The Effects of Noise on Biodiversity (NO0235)

Final Report for Defra

2012

By the University of Bristol

Part of the Exec Summary says: 

The major finding is that a strong evidence base does not exist regarding the potential impact of anthropogenic noise on non-marine UK PS and SPI. Definite conclusions could be made only about the reed bunting (Emberiza schoeniclus), which exhibits shifts in song frequency in response to road traffic noise. It is also likely that foraging in brown long-eared bats (Plecotus auritus), singing in European robins (Erithacus rubecula), house sparrows (Passer domesticus), starlings (Sturnus vulgaris) and bullfinches (Pyrrhula pyrrhula), and the behaviour of common toads (Bufo bufo) are affected by road traffic noise to some degree. Common issues preventing strong conclusions for other species include a lack of sufficient controls to rule out potential confounding factors (e.g. changes in the behaviour of animals near roads may be the consequence of differences in lighting, disturbance or habitat differences, rather than noise) and the use of acoustic measurements that are more relevant to humans than the auditory capabilities of the study species. In addition, hardly any studies directly considered how anthropogenic noise might impact individual fitness; while several more studies provided good proxies for fitness, definite conclusions in this regard would also be premature.

To make a fair assessment of how much anthropogenic noise affects non-marine wildlife in general, and UK PS and SPI in particular, will therefore require further empirical work. Such work should ideally address the current taxonomic bias towards studies on birds, include carefully designed experimental studies (while bearing in mind that such research on species of conservation priority raises some ethical issues), quantify the noise sources of relevance in a way that relates to the hearing capabilities of the study organism, look beyond short-term studies to consider chronic and repeated exposure, focus on response indicators that can inform models of population viability, and investigate impacts at community and ecosystem levels as well as how individuals are affected.

http://randd.defra.gov.uk/Document.aspx?Document=10048_NO0235_PublishedReport.pdf

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Loud aeroplane noise found to cause aggression in birds

Birds living near airports are more likely to be aggressive and suffer from hearing impairments, a new study has found.

August 27th, 2019

https://www.countryfile.com/wildlife/loud-aeroplane-noise-found-to-cause-aggression-in-birds/

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WHAT EFFECT DO AIRPLANES HAVE ON BIRDS? – A SUMMARY

Norbert Kempf and Ommo Hüppop,

Institute for Ornithological Research, Helgoland Ornithological Station

Date? Before 2000?

https://www.fai.org/sites/default/files/documents/ln_3-1_aircraft_effects_on_birds.pdf

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Plans to expand Bristol Airport accused of being flawed; decision put off till early 2020

A decision on Bristol Airport’s major expansion bid will not be made this year. They submitted proposals to boost passenger numbers from 10 million to 12 million a year by the mid-2020s, and to expand the airport’s on-site infrastructure.  A decision had been due over the summer but people are continuing to comment – there are currently about 3,780 objections and 1,800 letters of support.  Reasons for opposing the expansion include climate change, traffic levels, air pollution and noise.  When they declared a “climate emergency”, Bath and North East Somerset Council members also voted to oppose the airport’s expansion, amid concerns about increased congestion on rural roads in their area. There is also doubt about alleged economic benefit.  The airport and its supporters always talk up the possibility of more jobs, and improved “access international export markets.” In reality, the majority of air passengers are on leisure journeys.  The application will be considered by North Somerset Council’s planning and regulatory committee meeting in 2020, with possible dates the 22 January, 19 February and 18 March.

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  • 14 November 2019 (BBC)
Artist's impression of the new forecourt at Bristol Airport

Image copyrightBRISTOL AIRPORTAn artist’s impression of the proposed new forecourt at Bristol Airport

 

A decision on Bristol Airport’s major expansion bid will not be made this year.

The firm submitted proposals to boost passenger numbers to 12 million a year by the mid-2020s, and to expand its on-site infrastructure.

A decision had been due over the summer but people are continuing to comment – there are currently 3,787 objections and 1,807 letters of support.

Concerns have spanned from climate change to traffic and noise.

When they declared a “climate emergency”, Bath and North East Somerset Council members also voted to oppose the airport’s expansion, amid concerns about increased congestion on rural roads in their area.

It also said there was a lack of evidence about the economic benefit, the Local Democracy Reporting Service said.

The airport responded by saying there was unlikely to be a significant impact on the B3130, which runs from Pensford to Clevedon, and there would be a wide range of transport improvements.

It said it was “not made aware of any residual concerns” after meeting with council leaders.

There have been numerous supporters, including neighbouring authorities.

South Gloucestershire Council said the expansion would bring significant economic benefits to the region, but added it needed to be supported by a “step change” in public transport improvements.

The comments were echoed by Bristol City Council, which said: “Expansion of Bristol Airport will provide a significant boost to the local economy, including creating many new jobs accessible from south Bristol and access international export markets.”

The application will be considered by North Somerset Council’s planning and regulatory committee meeting in the new year.

An exact date has not been set but scheduled are meetings on 22 January, 19 February and 18 March.

Bristol Airport declined to comment.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-50416260

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Local community opposition group is

Stop Bristol Airport Expansion

 


‘Seriously flawed’ plans to expand Bristol Airport slated

Plans to increase the size of Bristol Airport are ‘seriously flawed’, according to parish councillors who live close to it.

5 November 2019

During the meeting, in Barrow Gurney, concerns of air traffic noise were raised along with observations of excessive traffic through the village.

There is a planning application, yet to be decided by North Somerset Council, to increase the passenger throughput of the airport from 10 million passengers a year to 12 million, which the parish council fears would lead to further noise intrusion.

The application includes a new canopy at the front of the building, an additional multi-storey car park and changes to the on-site road layout.

Barrow Gurney Parish Council and the Parish Councils Airport Association (PCAA) have both submitted strong objections to North Somerset Council regarding the current application.

Cllr Nick Tyrell said: “In Barrow Gurney, as in many other villages in the vicinity of the airport, there is widespread concern about the inevitable impact of airport expansion on their quality of life.

“We want to ensure that we do not have to suffer an unacceptable volume of traffic coming through the village and we do not want to experience more noise pollution.

“In our view, the current planning application is seriously flawed.

“It relies upon a significant further increase in the volume of car parking at the airport – which involves development in the greenbelt.

“This will place huge pressures on the network of rural roads in the surrounding area which already struggle to cope with the volume of through traffic generated.

“There are also major environmental issues associated with expansion, most notably the inevitable rise in CO2 levels generated by more aircraft and cars.

“This conflicts with North Somerset Council’s declaration of a climate emergency and its adoption of a low carbon reduction target to reduce emissions by 50 per cent by 2035.

“It is time to recognise that the communities around the airport need to be protected from the numerous environmental effects of airport expansion.”

The planning application, submitted in December 2018, has received more than 3,700 objections and 1,800 letters of support.

https://www.northsomersettimes.co.uk/news/villagers-raise-concerns-regarding-the-expansion-of-bristol-airpot-1-6357253
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Councils tell government to review Heathrow expansion following climate change developments

Local authorities opposed to Heathrow expansion say that changes in Government policy on climate change mean the case for a 3rd runway should be reviewed urgently. The national policy statement (ANPS) which included support for Heathrow expansion was designated in June 2018 – at a time when the UK was committed to an 80% cut in CO2 emissions, from the 1990 level, by 2050. But in June 2019 following the advice of the Climate Change Committee (CCC) the Government amended the commitment to a 100% cut  – with the strengthening based on ‘significant developments in climate change knowledge’.  This same logic needs to be applied to the ANPS. Under planning legislation a national policy statement must be reviewed if there has been a ‘significant change in any circumstances on the basis of which any of the policy set out in the statement was decided.’  And there has been. In September 2019 the CCC told the Government that the planning assumption for aviation should be to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 – and measures should be put in place that ‘limit growth in demand to at most 25% above current levels by 2050.’   The Heathrow case needs urgent review in relation to climate policy, and also noise. The councils say that Heathrow expansion is never going to happen – the obstacles are insurmountable.

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Councils tell government to review Heathrow expansion following climate change developments

4th November 2019

Heathrow

Local authorities opposed to Heathrow expansion say that changes in Government policy on climate change mean the case for a third runway should be reviewed urgently.

The national policy statement (ANPS) which included support for expansion at the airport was designated in June 2018 – at a time when the UK was committed to an 80 per cent reduction in emissions (by 2050).

In June this year following the advice of the Climate Change Committee (CCC) the Government amended the commitment to 100 per cent – the strengthening was based on ‘significant developments in climate change knowledge’.

Now campaigners say the same logic should be applied to the ANPS. Under planning legislation a national policy statement must be reviewed if there has been a ‘significant change in any circumstances on the basis of which any of the policy set out in the statement was decided.’

In September this year the CCC told the Government that the planning assumption for aviation should be to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. It added that measures should be put in place that ‘limit growth in demand to at most 25 per cent above current levels by 2050.’

The CCC concluded that ‘current planned additional airport capacity in London, including the third runway at Heathrow, is likely to leave at most very limited room for growth at non-London airports.’

The councils which comprise of Hillingdon, Wandsworth, Richmond upon Thames, Hammersmith & Fulham and Windsor and Maidenhead have now formally written to the Secretary of State under section 6 of the Planning Act 2008 calling for the 2018 ANPS to be reviewed in the light of the significant changes since then.

They say the ANPS should be reviewed to see whether expansion can be delivered consistently with new policy on climate change – and whether it can be delivered fairly across the UK.

Cllr Ravi Govindia, Leader of Wandsworth Council, said:

“The key planning assumptions on which the Government based its support for Heathrow expansion in June 2018 are now outdated. Under planning legislation the Secretary of State now has a clear duty to review the ANPS. It has become abundantly clear that he should do this on climate change grounds alone.”

Cllr Gareth Roberts, Leader of Richmond Council, said:

“It’s not just that the scientific advice to the Government on climate change has been strengthened. Since 2018 the scale of expansion across London has increased far beyond what was envisaged at the time.

“Gatwick and Luton have since then announced their own plans for adding capacity – up to 175,000 extra flights a year. The Government – despite encouraging airports to make best use of existing runway capacity in the NPS – has not assessed the combined impacts on the environment of this unplanned additional growth.”

Cllr Ray Puddifoot, Leader of Hillingdon Council, said:

“Expanding three airports in the London area will have a major impact on which areas are overflown. This is yet another example of how the people who were most likely to be affected by noise from expansion were not informed.

“Already it is clear that expansion at Luton could mean new flightpaths over Hillingdon. These are significant changes which must mean a review of the whole basis on which policy support was given to Heathrow expansion in 2018.”

Cllr Andrew Johnson, Leader of the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead, said:

“The effect on transport throughout the London area of three major airports adding tens of thousands of extra flights has not been taken into account. This is a significant area of change from 2018 and one which the Secretary of State must review.

“Expansion at three airports in the London area which all rely on the M25 will have far-reaching consequences. The increased pressure on rail and road networks in the capital will have major impacts on people’s ability to get to work and lead to worsening air quality. None of these cumulative effects have been assessed.”

Cllr Stephen Cowan, Leader of Hammersmith & Fulham Council, said:
“The government has chosen to deliberately ignore the huge environmental damage Heathrow’s proposed third runway will cause. Meanwhile, its own figures demonstrate the UK will gain a negligible return on the £18billion cost of the scheme – most of which could end up being funded by the taxpayer. There’s plenty of greener, better initiatives that such huge sums could be spent on which would produce the kind of sustainable economic growth our country desperately needs.”

The councils say that Heathrow expansion is never going to happen. The obstacles in its way including noise, air quality and now climate change, are insurmountable.

https://www3.rbwm.gov.uk/news/article/378/councils_tell_government_to_review_heathrow_expansion_following_climate_change_developments

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See earlier:

Government CO2 net zero commitment challenged in High Court, on Heathrow expansion NPS

A cross-party group of politicians will join claimants, campaigners and residents outside the High Court on the morning of Thursday 17th October as the legal challenge against the proposed expansion of Heathrow continues, with the Government’s new target of net zero emission by 2050 a key element of the judicial review.  The Court of Appeal will be hearing the challenges from Local Authorities, the Mayor of London and Greenpeace as well as Friends of the Earth, Plan B Earth and Heathrow Hub. The challenges are being made against the decision to designate the Airports National Policy Statement (ANPS). One ground is the incompatibility of the expansion plans with the UK’s climate change commitments.  The previous challenge was dismissed by the High Court on a technicality as the Government had not incorporated the Paris Agreement into law. The Climate Change Act (2008) has now been amended to incorporate a target of Net Zero by 2050, which places an even more pressing demand upon Government to limit the expansion of carbon intensive infrastructure. The No 3rd Runway Coalition said: “It’s now vital for Government to pause plans for Heathrow expansion, to reassess airport capacity strategy for the whole country.”

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Groups write to Government asking for a moratorium on airport expansion planning applications

Representatives of groups at some of the largest UK airports have written to both the Secretaries of State for Transport, and Housing, Communities and Local Government, to request a halt to airport expansion.  The letter asks them to suspend the determination by all planning authorities of applications to increase the physical capacity of UK airports, or their approved operating caps, until there is a settled UK policy position against which such applications can be judged.  Many UK airports are seeking – or have announced their intention to seek – planning approval to increase their capacity and/or their operating caps. In aggregate it has been estimated that proposals announced by UK airports would increase the country’s airport capacity by over 70% compared to 2017.  There is no settled UK policy on aircraft noise, or  policy on aviation carbon and how the sector will, as the CCC advises,  “limit growth in demand to at most 25% above current levels by 2050”.  The letter says: “Until a settled policy with set limits is established for greenhouse gas emissions and noise there should be a moratorium on all airport expansion planning applications.”
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COMMUNITIES CALL FOR MORATORIUM ON AIRPORT EXPANSION

5.11.2019 

Press release from Stop Stansted Expansion. 

A coalition of airport communities has called on the Government to suspend any increase in UK airport capacity until it has developed a plan for tackling the aircraft emissions which contribute to climate change.

The call for an immediate moratorium is set out in a letter [see Note to Editors] to the Secretaries of State for Transport and for Housing, Communities and Local Government. The letter is signed by a number of environmental and community campaign groups including Stop Stansted Expansion (‘SSE’).

Many UK airports including Belfast, Bristol, East Midlands, Gatwick, Glasgow, Heathrow, London City, Luton, Manston, Newcastle and Stansted currently have expansion plans.  However, there is still no policy setting out how greenhouse gases from the aviation industry can be reconciled with legislation committing the UK to delivering net zero emissions by 2050. The Government recently delayed until next year the publication of its new long term strategy for UK aviation, which will address the sector’s noise and climate impacts.

Expansion proposals announced by UK airports would increase the country’s airport capacity by an estimated 200 million passengers per annum, an increase of over 70% compared to the 285 million passengers that passed through UK airports in 2017.

The current plans to expand Stansted Airport to an annual throughput of 43 million passengers would, if approved, put more than a million extra tonnes of COinto the atmosphere each year.

Mike Young, SSE’s adviser on climate change issues said: “Whilst other sectors are reducing their carbon footprint, aviation COemissions continue to grow apace.  On present trends aviation will, by 2050, be the UK’s biggest contributor to climate change.  Recently issued figures for global aviation passenger transport for 2018 have the UK in third place for the greatest CO2 emissions behind the USA and China.  That is not a proud record for a country with less than one per cent of the world’s population.”

Mr Young added: “The need to tackle climate change is an urgent challenge if we are to prevent a climate emergency becoming a climate disaster.  Until a settled Government policy is established for tackling aviation greenhouse gas emissions there should be a moratorium on all airport expansion planning applications.”

FURTHER INFORMATION AND COMMENT

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Letter to two Secretaries of State (Transport and DCLG) from the Aviation Communities Forum

from

Aviation Communities Forum

Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign

Heathrow Association for the Control of Air Noise

Luton And District Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise

Stop Stansted Expansion

 

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TO:

The Rt Hon Grant Shapps

MP Secretary of State for Transport

Department for Transport

33 Horseferry Road

London, SW1P 4DR

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and

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The Rt Hon Robert Jenrick MP

Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government

2 Marsham Street London, SW1P 4DF

 

22 October 2019

Dear Secretaries of State

MORATORUM ON AIRPORT EXPANSION PLANNING APPLICATIONS

We are writing to ask you to suspend the determination by all planning authorities of applications to increase the physical capacity of UK airports, or their approved operating caps, until there is a settled policy position against which such applications can be judged.

Many UK airports including Belfast, Bristol, East Midlands, Gatwick, Glasgow, Heathrow, London City, Luton, Manston, Newcastle and Stansted are seeking or have announced their intention to seek planning approval to increase their capacity and/or their operating caps. In aggregate it has been estimated that proposals announced by UK airports would increase the country’s airport capacity by nearly 200 million passengers per annum. That would be an increase of over 70% compared to 2017.

There is currently, in our view, no settled policy position against which planning authorities can reasonably assess and determine such applications or that adversely impacted communities can reference in seeking to contest applications or seek conditions to them. The most significant gaps in the policy framework concern greenhouse gas emissions and noise.

In relation to greenhouse gas emissions, UK law now requires all UK greenhouse gas emissions to reduce to net zero by 2050. The government has confirmed to Parliament that this obligation covers the whole economy including aviation. However, it has not set out the policies and mechanisms that will apply to aviation in respect of this legal obligation.

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has recently advised that “Measures should be put in place to limit growth in demand to at most 25% above current levels by 2050”. It also advised that “The Government should assess its airport capacity strategy in the context of net zero. Specifically, investments will need to be demonstrated to make economic sense in a net-zero world and the transition towards it”.

The CCC also notes that “Current planned additional airport capacity in London, including the third runway at Heathrow, is likely to leave at most very limited room for growth at non-London airports”.

There is a clear inconsistency between the UK’s net zero legal obligation and the CCC’s advice on the one hand and the scale of the expansion being proposed by the industry on the other. The government has indicated in its response to the CCC’s 2019 Progress Report, that it will be consulting further on aviation and climate change, with a view to publishing a new policy in 2020. Until it has done so we believe there is a state of fundamental uncertainty such that it is not possible for planning authorities to determine airport expansion applications.

In relation to noise, the government’s Green Paper, Aviation 2050, proposed a new objective “to limit, and where possible, reduce total adverse effects on health and quality of life from aviation noise”. The government has also stated in the Green Paper that the aim of noise caps will be to balance noise and growth and that there should be appropriate compliance mechanisms. Finally it has stated that its new policy framework will reduce the harmful effects of aviation on the environment, such as carbon emissions, air quality and noise.

However, the government has not yet explained or provided any guidance on the factors that should be taken into account in setting noise limits, or on the circumstances in which it considers noise reductions should be possible or the relationship it expects to see between growth and noise reduction. In the absence of additional policy guidance in these areas we do not believe it is possible for planning authorities to assess whether airport’s proposals are consistent with the government’s aviation noise policies or to set appropriate noise conditions when considering applications for growth.

In summary, until a settled policy with set limits is established for greenhouse gas emissions and noise there should be a moratorium on all airport expansion planning applications.

Yours sincerely

 

 

Tim Johnson, Director, Aviation Environment Federation

Peter Barclay, Chair, Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign

Andrew Lambourne, Luton And District Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise

Charles Lloyd, Chair, Aviation Communities Forum

Peter Sanders, Chair, Stop Stansted Expansion

John Stewart, Chair, Heathrow Association for the Control of Air Noise

 

 

Cc: Paul Maynard MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Transport Robert Light, Lead Commissioner, Independent Commission on Civil Aviation Noise

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https://www.aef.org.uk/uploads/2019/10/Moratorium-letter-.pdf

 

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Sadiq Khan attacks London City Airport expansion plans – “unfettered growth is not an option”

Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, has warned London City Airport that “unfettered growth is not an option” as he criticised its plans for expansion. He said residents must have a break from plane noise, and the airport should take its air pollution and environmental responsibilities more seriously.  The airport, in a densely populated area of east London, is increasingly used for holiday travel – not business – and it wants to increase the current cap of 111,000 flights/year to 137,000 by 2030 and to 151,000 by 2035.  It hopes for 5 million passengers this year, but wants up to 6.5 million per year.  The Mayor said the current plans “would not be in the interest of Londoners”. He said noise from planes was a “fundamental issue” as changes to flight paths three years ago meant some areas were being flown over too often. Also that breaks from flights – overnight, and for 24 hours from lunchtime on Saturday – “must not be eroded” and the airport should use new technology to give residents more relief, not just to maximise profits. He said the airport must consider CO2 emissions from flights in its carbon reduction plans, as its current target of “net zero emissions by 2050 “does not include flights – only airport terminals, vehicles, and other ground operations.

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Sadiq Khan attacks London City Airport expansion plans

By Jessie MathewsonLocal democracy reporter
East London and West Essex Guardian
Sadiq Khan warned London City Airport that “unfettered growth is not an option” as he criticised its plans for expansion.

The Mayor of London said residents must have a break from flight noise, and the airport should take its air pollution and environmental responsibilities more seriously.

The airport, in the Royal Docks, Newham, East London, wants more people to use it, particularly holiday travellers – it expects a record 5 million passengers this year, up 40 per cent in the past five years.

It consulted on its draft plan from June until late September, and is currently assessing responses.

Residents are concerned the expansion plans would end the 24-hour break from overhead flights at weekends.

And the Mayor said he could not support the plans in their current form because “it would not be in the interest of Londoners”.

Mr Khan said noise from planes remained a “fundamental issue” as changes to flight paths three years ago meant some areas were being flown over too often.

He said breaks from flights – overnight, and for 24 hours from lunchtime on Saturday – “must not be eroded” and the airport should use new technology to give residents more relief, not just to maximise profits.

The Mayor also said it should set higher targets for public transport access to reduce the air pollution it causes, and questioned plans to expand parking by 20 per cent.

And Mr Khan said the airport must consider emissions from flights in its carbon reduction plans.

The airport’s current target of net zero emissions by 2050 does not include flights – only airport terminals, landing vehicles, and other ground operations.

In a letter to its chief executive Robert Sinclair, the Mayor said: “The airport’s ambitions are clear, but the draft master plan raises significant concerns.

“The airport must takes its environmental responsibilities and its impact on Londoners seriously.

“It is essential for the airport to recognise that unfettered growth is not an option and that it must be proactive in addressing its noise, air quality and carbon impacts.”

Mr Khan joins the London Assembly’s Labour, Liberal Democrat and Green groups, as well as the Mayors of Newham and Tower Hamlets in opposing the draft plans.

Newham, Tower Hamlets, Havering, Redbridge, Waltham Forest, Lewisham and Hackney councils have also criticised the current proposals.

Alan Haughton, a Blackwall resident and campaigner with Hacan East, a group opposing the airport’s expansion, welcomed Mr Khan’s letter.

He said: “It’s a very strong response from the Mayor. He obviously gets that London City Airport is acting irresponsibly with what it has put in its draft master plan.”

Mr Haughton said the airport should now provide more details of proposed changes to flight paths so residents could better understand the noise impact.

He said: “The airport need to stop. They need to kill this dead in the water – no one wants it.

“They need to scrap all expansion plans and all plans for weekend flights – until we have clear concise flight paths everything else must be on hold.”

A spokesperson for London City Airport said consulting on its plans had been the “ideal opportunity” to gather views on its future.

He said: “We take our environmental responsibilities seriously, both to local residents and to London as a whole, and our record to date on air quality, noise and carbon reduction demonstrates this commitment.

“In the event that the airport were to submit more detailed proposals in the future, these would be subject to full assessment of environmental impacts, as part of our rigorous focus on sustainable growth.”

https://www.guardian-series.co.uk/news/17993568.sadiq-khan-attacks-london-city-airport-expansion-plans/

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See also:

 

Tower Hamlets Mayor’s letter to London City Airport consultation, opposing changes that will negatively impact residents

The Mayor Tower Hamlets, John Biggs, has sent a letter to the London City Airport consultation, to express his concerns about the airport’s expansion plans. This is in addition to the more detailed response sent by the council itself. Mr Biggs says: …”the negative impacts of increasing flights at LCA would be unacceptable in terms of increasing noise levels and exacerbating climate change. The level of noise coming from aircraft needs to be tightly regulated and we believe lower thresholds for disturbance need to put in place. …  To protect residents from noise disruption LCA must retain the current 24 hour closure of the airport at weekends between 12.30pm Saturday – 12.30pm Sunday to provide respite for our residents from the noise. To limit the level of disturbance caused to our residents the restrictions on early morning, late night and weekend flights should also be retained,  …In Tower Hamlets we have declared a climate emergency and 40% of our residents live in areas with unacceptable levels of air quality. I would like to see further commitments by the airport on its plans to limit the amount of emissions from airport operations.”  See the full letter.

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Redbridge councillors agree to oppose ‘detrimental’ London City Airport expansion plans

Redbridge Councillors have agreed to oppose  (43 : 10) London City Airport’s expansion plans and express serious concern about the “detrimental effect” of noise and air pollution on the health and wellbeing of Redbridge residents.  Proposing the motion, Councillor Sheila Bain and Councillor John Howard spoke about the “profound noise and environmental impact” the proposals will have on residents, particularly those living directly under the flight paths. The motion also asked councillors to note a lack of evidence to support the claims that noise pollution, air quality and emissions will not be affected and the lack of adequate consultation by London City Airport with residents affected by the proposals, most of whom are unaware of the consultation taking place.  Councillor Paul Donovan said: “City Airport needs to think again, listen to what people are saying and realise that whilst they may need to make more money, that the environment, health and welfare of those of us living below these flight paths is more important.”

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Mayor of Newham’s challenge to London City Airport’s expansion as “fundamentally flawed, due to lack of clarity & information”

Campaigners have welcomed a demand by the mayor of Newham, Rokhsana Fiaz, to halt London City Airport’s consultation on expansion with more daily flights – until it shows how it will tackling noise and CO2 emissions. City Airport’s Consultation Master Plan suggests almost doubling the number of daily flights, with more early morning and late evening. The airport insists its consultation will continue till 20th September. The mayor called the consultation “fundamentally flawed because of lack of clarity and information” in a letter to the airport’s chief executive. She calls on the airport to halt the public consultation immediately until it publishes the “omitted technical details”. “The significance of the mayor’s move cannot be overstated. Newham is the planning authority for the airport,” said Hacan East chairman John Stewart.  Newham Council which declared a “climate emergency” earlier this year, and is seeking more evidence about the airport’s plans to tackle CO2 emissions and air pollution. A huge number of people are already badly affected by aircraft noise. Newham already has a large number of deaths, occurring prematurely, due to air pollution. London City airport growth – pollution from aircraft – would only add to that, as well as the noise assault.

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RESIDENTS DISMAYED BY LONDON CITY AIRPORT EXPANSION PLANS TO DOUBLE FLIGHT NUMBERS

London City’s Master Plan has been released, for consultation, and it is very bad news for local residents who suffer from the noise of its planes.  It is proposing to double the number of flights by 2035; to end the break when currently there are no flights between 12:30pm on Saturday and 12.30pm on Sunday; and to bring in more planes in the early morning and late evening. Residents are dismayed by the London City expansion revealed in its Master Plan published today.  The airport wants to lift the current cap of 111,000 flights allowed each year to 137,000 by 2030 and to 151,000 by 2035. Last year there were just over 75,000 flights. John Stewart, chair of HACAN East, which gives a voice to residents under the airport’s flight paths, said, “For all its green talk, this plan would be disastrous for residents.  Flight numbers could double from today’s levels.” Increasingly the airport caters for leisure passengers, not business. The consultation ends on 20th September.  The airport would need to go to a Planning Inquiry to get permission for any proposals it intends to take forward, after applying to Newham Council for its plans. Newham borough has pledged to make the borough “carbon neutral by 2030 and carbon zero by 2050”.  The airport will not be helping with that.

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