Stewart Wingate and senior Gatwick staff refuse to appear before group of local area MPs in Parliament

Sir Paul Beresford, MP for Mole Valley, has complained that Gatwick Airport Limited (GAL) has refused to appear publicly before MPs at the House of Commons to answer questions on their 2nd runway proposal.  The Chairman of the “Gatwick Coordination Group”, Crispin Blunt MP, invited Stewart Wingate, and Gatwick senior management to appear before the group in a Select Committee-style hearing in January 2015. But GAL has declined the invitation, saying GAL directors “do not think that a further public meeting is necessary”. Commenting on GAL’s decision, Sir Paul said “The MPs on the Gatwick Coordination Group collectively represent over half a million people whose lives stands to be affected by the airport’s expansion. …. Gatwick have failed to answer key points on the resilience of their surface access plan. If a second runway was to be built at Gatwick access both to and from the airport would become extraordinarily difficult.  …. Gatwick’s refusal to participate in an extended public scrutiny ….is an abdication of their responsibility as a corporate citizen in both Surrey and Mole Valley. However, given GAL’s inability to answer key questions on “show stopping” issues it is perhaps unsurprising they do not welcome further scrutiny.”
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Gatwick Refuse Public Questioning By Local MPs

18.12.2014 (By Sir Paul Beresford, sent to constituents on his mailing list)

 

Gatwick Airport Limited (GAL) has refused to appear publicly before MPs at the House of Commons to answer questions on their second runway proposal, it was confirmed yesterday.

The Chairman of the Gatwick Coordination Group, Crispin Blunt MP, invited the Airport’s CEO, Stewart Wingate, and its senior management team to appear before the other local MPs on the group in a Select Committee-style hearing in January 2015.

However, GAL yesterday declined the invitation, claiming that given the Airports Commission’s own public discussion session, and private meetings with MPs, had been held, the company’s directors “do not think that a further public meeting is necessary”.

Commenting on GAL’s decision, Sir Paul Beresford said “The MPs on the Gatwick Coordination Group collectively represent over half a million people whose lives stands to be affected by the airport’s expansion.

Enlargement of Gatwick as proposed will give London two ½ hub airports linked by the frequently crowded M25.

Gatwick have failed to answer key points on the resilience of their surface access plan. If a second runway was to be built at Gatwick access both to and from the airport would become extraordinarily difficult. The M23 is not a viable answer to these problems, stopping as it does just south of Croydon and more locally, roads are already at near peak capacity and simply cannot handle the enormous increase in traffic a second runway would bring. Gatwick has made token commitments towards modernising the surrounding road network but these empty gestures are precisely that and would be a drop in the required financial ocean.

There is also no answer forthcoming to the point that Gatwick is now estimated to be £100 billion behind Heathrow in terms of national economic benefit, and that there is no available labour force to staff this vast new business and scores of thousands of extra homes will be required in the area, when all local planning authorities are really struggling to work out how to meet existing housing demand.

On the question of housing, it is quite plain whatever Gatwick may say, that the vast majority of any new housing required would have to be built on precious and irrecoverable Green Belt land. This is an unacceptable loss – I strongly believe that we must not throw away our idyllic Surrey surroundings for the knock on building and enlarged infrastructure requirements for Gatwick’s second runway.
There is also a serious democratic issue here. They have declined to publish the financial assumptions on which they have made their case to the Davies Commission. This meeting was the last chance for us on behalf of the people we represent to publicly challenge why their numbers and assumptions remain secret.

Gatwick’s refusal to participate in an extended public scrutiny of their proposals by their local elected national representatives in a select committee type hearing is an abdication of their responsibility as a corporate citizen in both Surrey and Mole Valley. However, given GAL’s inability to answer key questions on “show stopping” issues it is perhaps unsurprising they do not welcome further scrutiny.

They do have some things to hide: They rely on one very busy rail line, while Heathrow will have a choice of five rail routes. When that stops, Gatwick largely stops. They rely on one slow arterial route out of central London, the A23, or routes via the M25. No strategic improvement is planned or would be funded by GAL.

They cannot guarantee that their shareholders will put up the finance, and their largest will be looking to disinvest before the money is required. There is no existing labour force to make this proposal work. The Commission rate them £100 billion behind Heathrow expansion in terms of national economic benefit, and they can’t challenge this when they won’t publish their numbers.

This refusal will only further damage the opinion of our constituents have of a company which has already had a catastrophic year of local relations owing to the misery inflicted upon tens of thousands of them by PR-NAV.

From Christmas Eve 2013 until now Gatwick have had an awful year. Flooding, baggage handler shortage, air traffic control, rail disruption, and new flight paths creating massive pain for their neighbours. Burying their head in the sand won’t make it go away. A vast advertising budget funded by a company domiciled abroad does not make the case for second runway. Openness to scrutiny might. Then again, I think they know it probably wouldn’t help. So this decision comes as no surprise.”

https://www.conservatives.com/OurTeam/Members_of_Parliament/Beresford_Sir_Paul.aspx

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Airports Commission adds an Addendum document on noise levels to its consultation

The Airports Commission put out their consultation on the three runway schemes, on 11th November.  But on 19th December the Commission added a document on noise, entitled the “National and local noise assessment addendum”.  It was prepared for the Commission by Jacobs, as many other papers including those on noise. The addendum deals with Imminent/Future Aircraft Modelling Assumptions.  There are tables indicating the noise levels of current and future aircraft; the latter must be partly speculative. Jacobs says these future aircraft types have been modelled by using an existing similar aircraft as a surrogate type and adjusting the noise levels as required, for arrivals and departures separately. The noise forecasts for the runway options partly depend on the noise level of the aircraft in future as well as a forecast of the mix of aircraft using each runway. There is inevitably a large degree of uncertainty in any such forecasts. 
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Additional airport capacity: noise analysis

19.12.2014 (Airports Commission)

The Commission has added another document to its consultation. This is

National and local noise assessment addendum

Airports Commission publishes consultation on shortlisted options for a new runway

These reports support the noise analysis in the consultation on the Airport Commission’s shortlisted options for additional airport capacity.

Jacobs Consultancy’s ‘Baseline’ report looks at the expected noise environment over a 60 year period on both a local and national level. It reflects expected developments in traffic growth and technological development against a ‘do minimum’ scenario with no airport expansion.

The ‘Local assessment’ considers noise impacts of schemes on the areas surrounding the expanded airport.

The ‘National assessment’ examines the national level noise impacts of schemes. It considers both their impacts on traffic at the expanded airport and the expected consequences for traffic at other major UK airports.

Large maps included in these documents have been published separately in the ‘Figures’ document.

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/additional-airport-capacity-noise-analysis

 

 

The documents on Noise in the consultation are at  https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/additional-airport-capacity-noise-analysis

The document added is the

National and local noise assessment addendum

Baseline

Local assessment

National assessment

Figures

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5. Noise:  Baseline and Local Assessment
Methodology Addendum

 

Introduction
This document is an addendum to two Jacobs Noise technical reports completed on behalf of the Airports Commission; 5. Noise: Local Assessment and 5. Noise: Baseline. These reports were published on the Airports Commission website on 11 November 2014 for public consultation and this paper is an addition to those reports.

The purpose of this document is to ensure complete transparency for the work that has been undertaken in terms of noise modelling for the three short listed schemes as determined by the Airports Commission.

The information contained in this report consists of additional information on the Air Transport Movement Schedules related to Standard Instrument Departures and Standard Arrival Routes used for noise modelling by ERCD of the three schemes. There is additional information on the surrogate aircraft used, together with information regarding the corresponding departure and arrival noise adjustments made to that surrogate aircraft to model the future aircraft.

Points to note on this additional information provided:

– If this information is used for modelling purposes by stakeholders, the noise adjustments are only relevant to the ANCON model, so have limited meaning when used in other models

– Other modellers would be able to re-run the scenarios without these adjustments

– If these adjustments are used for modelling by stakeholders, the resulting contours will not match the ANCON contours

– In the appendix of the Noise technical reports, the process for establishing the adjustments has been outlined already, allowing stakeholders to derive their own assumptions which are appropriate for their own models.

– Further detail on the methodology is available in the appendix of the Noise technical reports previously published.


 

Environmental Research and Consultancy Department

Noise Modelling for the Airports Commission: Imminent/Future Aircraft Modelling Assumptions and Aircraft Allocation

December 2014

1.1 The Environmental Research and Consultancy Department (ERCD) of the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has been commissioned by the Airports Commission to calculate forecast
noise exposure contours for the three short-listed proposals to meet long-term capacity demand in the south east of the UK.

1.2 This technical note comprises four tables which present information to accompany the traffic forecasts prepared by LeighFisher.

1.3 Tables 1 and 2 contain the assumptions used in the noise modelling of Generation 1 imminent aircraft, and Generation 2 future aircraft. Information is given on the aircraft category, type, number of seats and approximate entry into service date. Information is also given on the surrogate aircraft used, and the corresponding departure and arrival noise adjustments made to that surrogate aircraft to model the future aircraft.

1.4 The traffic forecasts provide numbers of operations for a list of aircraft types. Where these are named by aircraft model and variant, the description is explicit and refers to that single model type. In cases where the aircraft are not described so explicitly, or are given generic descriptions, the respective operations have been allocated to aircraft types that can be used in the noise modelling. Some of these allocations were advised by LeighFisher and others were allocated according to the methodology described in the document referenced below.

1.5 Tables 3 and 4 present information on the aircraft allocation for Heathrow and Gatwick respectively. The difference between the two is that turboprop aircraft do not currently operate at Heathrow, and are assumed not to operate at Heathrow in the future.

1.6 Further details and background are given in the CAA document: Noise Modelling for the Airports Commission: Methodology and Assumptions, which can be found in:

 Appendix A.3 of the Jacobs report: 5. Noise: Local Assessment, prepared for the Airports Commission (November 2014); and

 Appendix E of the Jacobs report: 5. Noise: Baseline, prepared for the Airports Commission (November 2014).

 

there follow a large number of technical tables ….


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Commission publishes new report on “strategic fit” for its consultation – on possible impact of runways on air travel cost

The Airports Commission has published another report to form the background information for its consultation. The consultation is on details of runway plans at two runway options at Heathrow, and one at Gatwick, and ends on 3rd February. The new document is entitled “Impacts of Expanding Airport Capacity on Competition and Connectivity – The case of Gatwick and Heathrow” and is by the International Transport Forum. It comes under the “strategic fit” category, and supports the strategic fit analysis in the consultation.  By strategic fit the Commission means:”To provide additional capacity and connectivity in line with the assessment of need”  and “To improve the experience of passengers and other users of aviation.” (Nothing to do with those affected by aviation impacts, but not passengers). The new document looks at possible scenarios of what might happen with either a Heathrow or Gatwick runway, and how airlines might react.  While it is probable that both airports would have to put up landing charges, to pay for a runway etc, it is likely the extra runway capacity would reduce the cost of slots and therefore lead to lower fares. The extent this might happen is conjecture, as it is not possible to accurately predict airline etc  behaviour in future.
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Airports Commission website

Additional airport capacity: strategic fit analysis

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/additional-airport-capacity-strategic-fit-analysis

 The added document

Impacts of expanding airport capacity on competition and connectivity

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/388848/impacts.pdf

The Commission says:

“These reports support the strategic fit analysis in the consultation on the Airports  Commission’s short-listed options for additional airport capacity.

The Airports Commission’s ‘Forecasts’ report sets out the methodology, assumptions and results of the commission’s forecasting of aviation demand. It includes a description of the various scenarios modelled and the differences between them.

The ‘Expanding airport capacity: competition and connectivity’ report was produced by consultants (ITF/SEO). It assesses how airlines could respond across a range of different global scenarios to expanding runway capacity at either Gatwick or Heathrow. It considers the potential connectivity and competition impacts would be generated by such responses.

The Airports Commission’s ‘Fit with wider spatial and socio-economic development strategies’ report looks at the context of each expansion option across plans including:

 

  • local authority and local enterprise partnership strategies
  • national frameworks
  • the London Plan

 


 

The documents:

Cover note

Forecasts

Expanding airport capacity: competition and connectivity

Fit with wider spatial and socio-economic development strategies

Impacts of expanding airport capacity on competition and connectivity



Just the Executive Summary is copied below:

Executive Summary

 

[The term “passenger welfare” or “air freight user welfare” are understood to mean the access to routes and services, and the cost of these services.  AirportWatch note]. 
The UK Airports Commission has short-listed three options for expanding airport capacity in the UK.  One option concerns expansion of Gatwick with an additional runway. The other options concern expansion of runway capacity at Heathrow. The impacts of expansion on passenger and air freight user welfare do not only depend on the macro-economic and aviation industry future, as defined by the aviation scenarios already developed by the Airports Commission, but also on the airline responses that can be expected as capacity comes on stream. This report assesses quantitatively the competition, scarcity and connectivity impacts of different airline responses to expanding runway capacity at Gatwick
or Heathrow.

Airlines may react in different ways to expansion of capacity at Gatwick or Heathrow. The way macro-economic conditions change, how business models develop over time and how new aircraft (such as the Boeing 787 and Airbus A350) have an impact on the industry will affect the likelihood of potential airline responses unfolding. An additional runway at Gatwick would most likely see airlines responding either with development of Gatwick into a low-cost gateway or by expanding conventional point-to-point services at Gatwick.

Additional runway capacity at Heathrow could be expected to be taken up predominantly by hub operations but in some circumstances could see growth focused on an increase in point-to-point services at the airport.

These two pairs of airline responses can be considered as representative of the range of outcomes for capacity expansion at Gatwick or Heathrow. The four responses combined with the most relevant aviation demand scenarios developed by the Airports Commission are assessed in this report for the impact on socio-economic welfare.

The four airline response-scenario combinations (‘airline response outcomes’ for short) are as follows.

Heathrow expansion

 Airline response outcome 1: ‘Hub-carrier growth at Heathrow, point-to-point growth at
Gatwick’ combined with the Airports Commission ‘Assessment of Need’ scenario.

 Airline response outcome 2: ‘Point-to-point growth at Heathrow and Gatwick, Heathrow
remains the network hub’ combined with the Airports Commission scenario ‘Low-cost is
King’.

Gatwick expansion

 Airline response outcome 3: ‘Partnerships: Gatwick becomes a low-cost gateway, Heathrow remains the network hub’ combined with the Airports Commission scenario ‘Low-cost is King’.

 Airline response outcome 4: ‘Gatwick point-to-point growth, Heathrow remains the network hub’ combined with the Airports Commission scenario ‘Relative Decline of Europe’.

 

We estimate the airline response outcomes in terms of connectivity gains, competition gains and gains due to a reduction in scarcity rents to the benefit of passengers, all in comparison to a ‘do minimum’ scenario without any expansion of capacity in the London airports system.

Approach

The analysis of the airline response outcomes takes a medium-term perspective, examining impacts in the year 2030. This choice is deliberate. Formulation of airline responses beyond 2030 would significantly reduce credibility as uncertainty regarding future business models, financial performance of the airline industry, cost levels and the survival of individual carriers becomes increasingly large. The choice of the year of analysis does have implications for the results. Growth in demand is delayed under the Relative Decline of Europe scenario and this results in benefits to passengers from capacity expansion accruing mainly after 2035 under airline response outcome 4.

The airline response-aviation scenario combinations are evaluated in terms of passenger welfare impacts related to connectivity gains (more flights and destinations), changes in competition levels (lower fares) and reduction in airline scarcity rents (lower fares), compared to the do minimum scenario.

The system currently employed for allocating slots for take-off and landing in London airports, with most slots allocated free of charge to incumbent airlines, means that rents accrue mainly to airlines.

Airline scarcity rents arise when potential demand exceeds the physical airport capacity to accommodate airline seat supply, as is currently the case at Gatwick and Heathrow. Airline rents accrue as air ticket prices increase to balance supply and demand and clear the market. Ticket prices are higher than they would be if all demand was accommodated. Airport expansion will reduce airline scarcity rents, reflected in lower airfares and lower airline revenues.

The welfare gains assessed arise mainly from the lower travel costs for UK and non-UK residents that result from runway capacity expansion at either Gatwick or Heathrow and the airline responses that unfold. The SEO Netcost model is used to estimate the effects for the year 2030 for the four airline responses outcomes.

Results

We find that reductions in airline scarcity rents make up the majority of the consumer welfare gains. All tested airline responses, including expansion of the hub operation at Heathrow, produce benefits for passengers from competition. Welfare benefits for passengers in 2030 for each of the airline response outcomes are summarised in figure 1.1.

………….. and there is a figure showing benefits to UK passengers and Non-UK passengers under the different scenarios ……………

 

The outcomes are not directly comparable as they reflect different scenarios for the overall development of aviation and the global economy and are strongly affected by differences in the pattern of GDP growth assumed. It should be noted that beyond 2030 the point-to-point airline response in the Relative Decline of Europe scenario following Gatwick expansion would be expected to begin to generate more substantial welfare gains.

Based on our assessment, we conclude the following main points.

1. For each of the airline responses expansion of Gatwick and Heathrow produces welfare benefits for passengers.

2. The reduction in airline scarcity rents is the most important element of the consumer welfare impacts of airport expansion for all airline response outcomes.

3. All tested airline responses produce benefits from competition, including those with an expanded hub operation at Heathrow, and all produce connectivity benefits.

4. Around 55% of total welfare benefits accrue to UK residents in all airline responses. In the OD [OD probably means origin / destination traffic – the actual places people come from and go to, rather than just the air travel part of their trip.  The Commission do not define it.  AirportWatch note] market, leisure traffic accounts for about three quarters of the consumer welfare gains.

5. Total consumer benefits are highest in the scenario assuming point-to-point traffic growth at Heathrow (airline response 2) and low-cost gateway development at Gatwick (airline response 3).

6. The lowest total consumer benefits are found in airline response 4, which assumes point-to-point growth at an expanded Gatwick in the Relative Decline of Europe scenario.

7. An important factor in explaining the differences between airline responses is the fact that different demand growth rates are used, depending on the Airports Commission scenario that applies for each airline response. Until 2030, growth in the Low-cost is King scenario is higher than in the Assessment of Need scenario or the Relative Decline of Europe scenario. This difference between the demand scenarios leads to higher overall welfare gains in airline responses 2 and 3 (which both assume a Low-cost is King scenario) compared to the Assessment of Need (airline response 1) and Relative Decline of Europe scenarios (airline response 4).

8. The effects quantified relate to direct welfare benefits for passengers. Changes in surface transport access conditions and the consequences of expansion in allowing passengers to switch to a more convenient airport in terms of access are not included. Similarly, wider economic effects from improved connectivity of the London area have not been quantified.

 

[The document does not mention noise or environment once, though it does mention carbon due to carbon capped etc scenarios. It does not appear to consider “welfare” of anyone other than passengers, or the costs of the noise impacts or other environmental harm. ]

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Airports Commission consultation on shortlisted options for a new runway

11.11.2014  – links to the main consultation documents. Technical suporting documents at link below.

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Links to

Additional airport capacity: consultation supporting documents

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Etihad shortly to get first of 10 Airbus A380 but won’t buy more of them – also getting first of 71 Boeing 787 Dreamliners

Etihad Airways is about to get its first Airbus A380 and its first Boeing 787.  Etihad has a total of 10 A380s on order over the next two and a half years, and now says it is not interested in ordering any more. The first starts service on 27th December, between Abu Dhabi and London, for one of its 3 flights per day. Eventually Etihad’s service to Heathrow will be an all-A380 operation.  Other routes are still being identified for the A380, which will be used on flagship routes where the airports are also slot constrained. It will be used on flights from Abu Dhabi to New York, Paris and Sydney. Etihad’s A380 features an all new premium cabin dubbed “The Residence”, a 3-room suite that includes a double bed and butler service, and costs $20,000 for the trip between Abu Dhabi and London.  Etihad’s first Dreamliner 787 will start service on 1st February, between Abu Dhabi and Frankfurt.  Etihad has 71 Dreamliners on order, 41 787-9s and 30 787-10s. 
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Etihad says won’t buy more A380s; Boeing 787 delayed

RELATED

Thursday, Dec 18, 2014 (Zawya – Gulf News)

Abu Dhabi: Etihad Airways is not interested in ordering any more AirbusA380s, while the launch of its first Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner into service has been delayed, said the airline’s James Hogan, president and chief executive, on Thursday.

“Ten A380s is the number we need. We have no discussions to acquire anymore,” he said at a press event in Abu Dhabi unveiling the airline’s first A380 and Dreamliner.

The Dreamliner has been delayed by “one to two weeks” due to “certification issues,” Hogan said.

The Dreamliner will now enter into service on the Abu Dhabi-Frankfurt route on February 1. Earlier this year, Etihad said it expected the Dreamliner to enter into service in December.

“I would rather iron out the issues that we have so that the following aircraft are on track,” Hogan said.

He added that the issues were “minor”, however, declining to specifically comment as to whetherEtihad will seek compensation for the delay.

“What’s important to me is that we deliver the product,” he said.

Etihad has 71 Dreamliners on order, 41 787-9s and 30 787-10s.

Boeing’s Dreamliner programme has been marred by a series of in-service incidents since the first flight in December 2009; however, Etihad appears to have no concerns over the aircraft’s history of incidents.

“We are very confident the issues they’ve had have been resolved,” Hogan said.

Airbus A380, meanwhile, will enter into service on time, on December 27. Etihad has placed its first of the ten A380s on one of its three daily Abu Dhabi-London services. “Eventually, Heathrow will be an all-A380 operation,” Hogan said, adding that other routes are still being identified for the superjumbo. “[The A380] will be operating flagship routes where the airports are also slot constrained,” he said.

Etihad will receive the ten A380s over the next two-and-a-half years.

The airline has already announced the A380 will eventually be used on flights from Abu Dhabi to New York, Paris and Sydney.

Etihad’s A380 features an all new premium cabin dubbed “The Residence”, a three-room suite that includes a double bed and butler service. The Residence costs $20,000 on the Abu Dhabi-London route.

Hogan said a “travel agent from America” was the first “client” on The Residence. He also said he had received at least one inquiry from a potential passenger looking to celebrate his 20th wedding anniversary.

“What we’re actually seeing is … a whole range of people wanting to take advantage of this,” Hogan added.

While Etihad is looking to rewrite the rule book on travel with its new premium class, other carriers are taking a step back. Emirates recently confirmed it will no longer just fly three-class A380s, whereby from late 2015 it will also fly two-class superjumbos.

Hogan ruled out a similar move by Etihad .

“The spec you see on-board will be the same across all day,” he said.

Etihad flew in around 200 journalists to attend Thursday’s unveiling. It flew in 50 more reporters for a press event earlier this year announcing the interiors of the two aircraft. The airline used the global media audience to unveil its new cabin crew uniform, designed by Italy’s Ettore Bilotta.

By Alexander Cornwell Staff Reporter

https://www.zawya.com/story/Etihad_says_wont_buy_more_A380s_Boeing_787_delayed-GN_18122014_191252/

 

 

 

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New Gatwick paper questioning extent of benefits to local businesses from 2nd runway

An important objective set out by the Airports Commission is: “To maximise economic
benefits…..To promote employment and economic growth in the local area….To
produce positive outcomes for local communities and the local economy”. A new paper by GACC (the Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign) challenges the assertion by Gatwick Airport Ltd (GAL) that a 2nd runway would be supportive of this objective. By engaging with opinion from local business communities, and taking a less selective view of the evidence, GACC concludes that the proposal would be detrimental for local businesses, the local economy and the community as a whole. The GACC paper (6 pages, easy to read) deals with a range of topics (shortage of labour, higher costs, inward migration, need for more houses, road and rail congestion and worse local environment  ) and includes comments from local businesses. Two examples are the problems of wages rising due to fierce competition for labour locally, where there is very low current unemployment. Also the cost to local businesses of road and rail congestion, wasting time – as well as losses to rural businesses from a deterioration in the local environment.
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Bad for Business?

A paper prepared by the Gatwick Area Conservation Campaign
with help from local businessmen

(Only 6 pages – easy to read)
An important objective set out by the Airports Commission is: ‘To maximise economic
benefits…..To promote employment and economic growth in the local area….To
produce positive outcomes for local communities and the local economy’. (1) This paper
challenges the assertion by Gatwick Airport Ltd (GAL) that a second runway would be
supportive of this objective.

By engaging with opinion from local business communities, and taking a less selective
view of the evidence, GACC concludes that the proposal would be detrimental for local
businesses, the local economy and the community as a whole.

Background

According to the Office of National Statistics there are over 30,000 businesses in West
Sussex.(2)  The majority are located in the north of the county, in the vicinity of Gatwick
Airport. Surrey has 61,900 businesses but with less concentration around Gatwick. (3)

It would be a fair guess to say that there must be around 30,000 businesses in the
Gatwick area.

Business Opinion

West Sussex County Council and Crawley Borough Council commissioned a survey of
West Sussex businesses in May 2013. (4)  It showed that only 31% of firms had employees
who ever took a flight for business reasons. Only 4% felt air travel was important ‘for
bringing overseas customers to your organisation.’

51% of firms agreed that there is a need for new runway capacity in the South East, and
52% favoured a new runway at Gatwick. Those were the ‘headline results’ that were
used to influence the vote by West Sussex County Council to support a second runway.
But the survey (and the vote) was before the full scale and implications of making
Gatwick bigger than Heathrow were generally recognised.

Nevertheless 24% of businessmen considered that Gatwick expansion ‘would
dramatically affect local home (sic) and countryside’ and 23% felt it would ‘cause too
much air and noise pollution’.

That is confirmed in a letter to GACC from a Director of a leading Sussex company:

“Established for over 150 years, we are a major international business that owns
three of the world’s leading brands and employs over 100 people locally.

“Many of our employees have already complained of the increase in aircraft noise,
particularly at night and at weekends and we are most concerned at the impact in
future of a second runway at Gatwick on this. Worsening aircraft noise is not only
affecting them personally and potentially the value of their houses but also their
leisure time; whereby some of their favourite spots for peaceful relaxation are now
blighted by aircraft noise. I suspect this will also have a negative impact on the
leisure industry in the area.”

Shortage of labour.

According to Gatwick Airport (May 2014) a new runway would create 122,000 new jobs in the South East. The Airports Commission (November 2014) puts the figure at up to 90,000 by 2060. Although it is said that these new jobs would be spread across the South East, inevitably most would be concentrated in or around the Gatwick area.

A report by Optimal Economics commissioned by Gatwick Airport points out that:
‘Within the Gatwick Diamond, there is a projected excess of employment over resident
labour supply throughout the forecast period. (6)  Gatwick Airport, however, blithely
ignore the labour shortage warnings highlighted by their own economists; it is
inevitable, that as unemployment across the area remains low, the result will be a
chronic shortage of labour. That situation is likely to put many local firms at a serious
disadvantage.

Bernard Treanor, a former manager for Royal Mail, writes:

“My experience showed that there was a constant recruitment problem for what is
now referred to as the Gatwick Diamond. Not only did the churn effect of staff
turnover lead to inefficiencies, but a constant high vacancy level led to increased
costs through overtime pay, as well as poor quality of service. It was only through
offering high overtime levels, and a variety of bonus payments, that the business
could attempt to compete on pay with the airport – but effectively fail in doing so.

The [Airports Commission consultation document] recognises that there is no local
pool of unemployment to draw on, but … does not admit that the Gatwick
Diamond has a history of being an “employment hotspot” (albeit disguised by the
recent recession), and is already dependent on … an immigrant workforce. It is
arguable that the current reliance on an EU migrant workforce will be put under
further strain given the current political situation.’ (7)”

Higher costs.

Shortage of labour would tend to push up rates of pay, again causing difficulties for local firms. The Managing Director of an advanced technology company located close to Gatwick has written to say:

“Such a shortage of labour will inevitably create a price war and wages will sky
rocket in an already very expensive area. Companies operating in a very
competitive global market will be substantially disadvantaged. (8)
Bernard Treanor makes a similar point:

“The most probable outcomes – and track records should demonstrate this – is that
labour intensive small businesses will need to compete on wage price, which will
impact their profitability and may threaten their commercial viability. For labour
intensive Public Service infrastructure, in addition to the Royal Mail, we should also
look at local government, health service, some transport and other government
agency organisations, who will not be able to compete for wages, and therefore
experience churn and vacancy levels which will impact on the quality of service
they provide to the local social and business communities.”

Inward migration.

The main effect of the creation of so many new jobs would be to draw in people from other parts of the UK and from the EU. That is welcomed by some firms because it would mean a bigger market for local shops, hotels, guest houses, taxis etc. They may, however, not have realised that it would also cause an influx of new shops, new hotels, new taxi firms etc.; meaning in turn more competition, and could result in local firms being put out of business.

More houses.

Consultants commissioned by the Gatwick Diamond Initiative and the
West Sussex County Council estimated that there would be a need for around 40,000
new houses. The Airports Commission use a lower figure and GACC is currently
investigating the difference.

A large number of new houses would be good business for house building firms, but
how many new building firms would move into the area? Would it mean better jobs for
local building workers or would most of the new jobs be filled by transient labour from
elsewhere?

Road and rail congestion.

A separate paper by GACC has shown that a second runway would mean around 136,000 extra road journeys a day in the vicinity of Gatwick. That is just for air passengers, and travel to work by airport employees and journeys to work of employees of new firms. In addition there would be all the extra commercial traffic generated by the larger airport and all the new firms.

The result would be delays at many road junctions. Longer journey times both for staff
and for deliveries would have an adverse effect on local firms.

For rail services no improvements are planned other than those already in hand to cope
with the forecast growth in demand without a new runway. Result – serious overcrowding.

Peter Suchy, the owner of a small business near Gatwick, has written to say:

“I am very concerned that a second runway would create intolerable pressure on our
local roads as there has been no definitive plan for the expansion of the road
network that will be needed for at least a ten mile radius of Gatwick. If the planned
passenger traffic (oh, and allied traffic such as people going to work) is achieved
then there is simply no way that the current one motorway (and that is fed by the
M25 from one end and that can’t cope at the moment so God only knows how it
will cope with not only the increase in Gatwick traffic but the annual increase that
we see year on year) and single carriageway A roads such as the A272, A25, A29,
A264 from East Grinstead and A22 will be able to cope, it’s bad enough now. The
other dual carriageway roads such as the A24/A264 and A21 will also be clogged
with traffic. If the powers that be seriously believe that they are going to fit the
traffic that currently surrounds Heathrow and duplicate it into the roads that
surround Gatwick then someone needs their head examining. It is a joke and the
amount of destruction of the green belt to accommodate this expansion and all the
add-ons such as housing and industrial estates is bordering on criminal.”

Loss of business premises.

The construction of the new runway would involve the demolition of 286 business premises, including City Place (head office of Nestlé) and part of Manor Royal. 286 firms would have all the expense and hassle of having to relocate.

Gatwick Airport have suggested that some firms might be accommodated on land that they would acquire between the airport and the M23 – but that to make sufficient space available, the airport car parks would need to be double decked. So the land would not come cheap. And many firms would not wish to become tenants of Gatwick Airport Ltd.
If firms wished to move elsewhere, there might be problems getting planning permission.

The managing director of the advanced technology company again:

“Some businesses will need to be relocated. Mine for instance could be a prime
candidate. The disruption will be immense. The land proposed for a new facility is
rather inappropriate, being directly under the flight path with all that entails. No
discussion of time scale or compensation has been started so we are in horrible
‘planners blight limbo’ with no apparent end in sight. With current planning rules
any new building would likely be seriously affected by lack of parking space making 
it less attractive for people to work here. We own our current site, the ownership
status of the new place is unknown.

In short the expanded airport will be bad for the majority of pre-existing businesses
and people that are already established here. The big winners will be the Airport
itself, owned by a conglomeration of overseas investment companies who have
only been in situ since 2009 and I understand are likely to sell out soon after the
decision re the new runway. We have been here since 1963 and intend to remain.”

Impact on rural businesses.

Many rural businesses depend for their success on peace and tranquillity. A prime example is Hever Castle, birthplace of Anne Boleyn.

Hever Castle supports up to 280 jobs in season. The castle’s chief executive Duncan
Leslie:

‘When people come to rural attractions they are expecting a degree of peace and
tranquillity. We believe that a second runway would almost certainly spell the end for
Hever Castle as a visitor attraction.’ (9)
The same is true for many rural businesses, for example quiet country hotels, film
making enterprises, country parks and other outdoor visitor attractions.

Worse environment – worse for business

Surrey, Sussex and Kent are pleasant places to live. But if the environment is worsened
by aircraft noise, by urbanisation, and by traffic congestion, it will become harder to
recruit and keep high quality staff.

A professional communications expert based at Haywards Heath, has written to say:

“The opening of the new headquarters and warehouse for a global component
service provider to the aviation industry in Sayers Common 20 miles from the 6
airport is perhaps a portent of what is to come, especially should a second runway
be approved for Gatwick.

The immediate Crawley catchment area is now bursting at the seams as it tries to
accommodate the burgeoning airline businesses that Gatwick needs to support it.
Some companies have become well established across East Sussex, West Sussex
and Surrey and provide welcome local employment. But increasingly they are being
forced further and further from the airport.

These remoter locations are inevitably less convenient operationally. Company
round-the-clock activities and staff movements significantly add to the traffic on
the local roads that were never designed to take it. Sadly many businesses are
guilty of further infilling and concreting of our green and pleasant counties.

When considering the environmental damage that a second runway will bring – we
must look well beyond the immediate Gatwick perimeters. The damage on the
fringes of the airport will be just a small fraction of the total impact.

Consider the housing estates and rambling industrial development, roads and other
infrastructure that Gatwick has led to in the last 50 years in the surrounding 30
miles – now double it for the proposed second runway. Do we really need it here?
Isn’t it time for another area to take the strain and enjoy the economic benefit that
a major airport can bring?”

The national picture.

There is no significant national pressure from business for a second Gatwick runway. The CBI favours expansion at Heathrow rather than at Gatwick. Recently 23 Chambers of Commerce that represent more than 40,000 UK businesses have written an open letter to the Airports Commission about the benefits of Heathrow Airport expansion.

Many people believe that a second runway anywhere in the South East would take
business away from other regions of the UK that need employment and thus be
damaging to the UK’s economic recovery and the rebalancing of the economy.

December 2014

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Notes:

(1) Airports Commission. Consultation Document Table2.1
(2)  ONS UK Business 2012
(3) Surrey County Council
(4)  Attitudes to Air Travel in West Sussex. QA Research July 2013. The survey oversampled larger businesses, and businesses in Crawley.
(5) Email 6 November 2014
(6) Optimal Economics Report. Paragraph 3.46
(7) Email from Bernard Treanor ACMA, CGMA. 27 November 2014
(8)  Email to GACC 11 June 2014
(9) http://www.sevenoakschronicle.co.uk/Gatwick-runway-spell-end-Hever-Castle-tourism/story-19806450-detail/story.html#ixzz3Kk8pufMN
December 2014

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Sir Howard Davies argues for new runway in order to keep air fares low – or get even lower

Sir Howard Davies, Chair of the Airports, writing a comment piece published in the FT, says if  “Britain is to keep pace in the global economy”, south east England needs an additional runway. But he says this would come at a high price, and the question is where the money is most effectively spent.  He says there will be a trend to more low cost long haul point to point traffic, and slightly more fuel efficient planes. And thus: “With additional runway capacity around London, these trends suggest more direct routes will be available to economically significant destinations, and an increase in the frequency of service on existing routes. Passengers and freight operators would benefit from the time saved from taking a more convenient or more direct route. There would be more airline competition, too, which would be likely to reduce costs.”  He does not mention the impact of a runway on the environment, nor noise or carbon emissions. Merely economics. His piece ends: “If this analysis is correct, removing the capacity constraint should benefit passengers, increasing the choice of routes and carriers, potentially at lower cost.”  So purely for the benefit of passengers, to give yet lower air fares (no VAT, no fuel tax, from May 2015 only two bands of APD, and minimal coverage by the ETS).
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Greater competition from airport expansion will spark fall in air fares, Airports Commission chairman argues

 

Airline ticket prices could fall spurred by greater competition if either Heathrow or Gatwick is allowed to expand.

The suggestion comes today from Airports Commission chairman Sir Howard Davies.

Writing in the Financial Times, he said: “If either is allowed to expand, there will be greater opportunity for competition between airlines, and ticket prices may therefore fall, offsetting the higher landing charges new capacity would entail.

“If this analysis is correct, removing the capacity constraint should benefit passengers, increasing the choice of routes and carriers, potentially at lower cost.”

New analysis prepared for the Commission by the International Transport Forum and SEO Economic Research, published this week, argues that UK aviation is likely to be driven by two developments.

“The first is the rise of inbound travel from emerging market economies and the associated rise in competition from airlines serving them,” said Sir Howard. “The growth of middle classes countries predominantly in south-east Asia is likely to lead to more point-to-point long haul traffic.

“The second development will be new aircraft that are coming into operation, notably the Boeing 787 and the Airbus A350 – both at least 20% more fuel-efficient than the models they replace.

“They are also quieter, meaning fewer local residents will be affected by noise. They will make it easier for lower-cost carriers to enter the long-haul market, though many have been ordered by network carriers that will also benefit from lower operating costs, potentially adding previously unviable spokes to their hub networks.

“With additional runway capacity around London, these trends suggest more direct routes will be available to economically significant destinations, and an increase in the frequency of service on existing routes.

“Passengers and freight operators would benefit from the time saved from taking a more convenient or more direct route. There would be more airline competition, too, which would be likely to reduce costs.”

He added: “The research also shows that London’s constrained capacity comes with a cost. Where demand for airport capacity exceeds supply, airlines can earn a return higher than the average cost of supplying a take-off or landing slot.

“Airports cannot capture these excess returns if their charges are capped, as at Gatwick and Heathrow.”

Sir Howard did not indicate a preference but said: “If Britain is to keep pace in the global economy, south-east England needs an additional runway.

“But this vital infrastructure will come at a high price, and the question is where the money is most effectively spent.”

The Commission will make its recommendation on additional capacity for the new government after next May’s election.

Consultation papers published last month suggest a price tag of up to £19 billion at Heathrow, for a full-length runway with related infrastructure; and about £9 billion at Gatwick.

“The numbers are huge but the private-sector owners of London’s largest airports believe the investment can be financed and will yield an acceptable return,” said Sir Howard.

“Airlines, and more importantly passengers, are concerned about what the investment will mean for the landing charges each departing passenger pays as part of the ticket price.

“At £20, Heathrow’s charges are already the highest in Europe, and we estimate they could rise to as much as £32. Gatwick’s are lower but would rise significantly.

“These large increases lead some to question the viability of all the proposals we are evaluating and to ask whether it might prove more cost-effective to expand regional airports instead.

“We considered that option in last year’s interim report and rejected it. While it is vital that other airports – including Stansted – expand, it is not possible to direct airlines to fly from airports where they do not believe demand is adequate.

“Constraining supply of take-off slots in the south-east, where demand is highest, would result in lower overall connectivity and a less efficient, less carbon-efficient network.

“Still, to assess whether expanded capacity in the south-east is likely to be a good investment, we need to consider the market reaction.

“Although we expect runways and terminals to be privately financed, some related public infrastructure spending will be needed — more at Heathrow than Gatwick.

“Forecasting airline and passenger responses is not simple. Few foresaw the dramatic growth in low-cost carriers at the expense of national airlines; will that continue? In particular, will the low-cost model spread to long-haul routes or will the attractions of the large network airlines (especially to time-pressed businesspeople) allow them to maintain or increase market share?

“Does the future lie with “hubs”, collecting and distributing traffic to smaller airports, or point-to-point traffic?”

http://www.travelweekly.co.uk/Articles/2014/12/18/51552/greater-competition-from-airport-expansion-will-spark-fall-in-air-fares-airports-commission.html
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Sir Howard’s letter:

 

Let London’s airports achieve potential

By Howard Davies

17.12.2014

“The Airports Commission I chair is working on a recommendation on additional capacity for the new government after next May’s election. The consultation papers we published last month suggest a price tag of up to £19bn at Heathrow, for a full-length runway with related infrastructure; and about £9bn at Gatwick. The numbers are huge but the private-sector owners of London’s largest airports believe the investment can be financed and will yield an acceptable return.

Airlines, and more importantly passengers, are concerned about what the investment will mean for the landing charges each departing passenger pays as part of the ticket price. At £20, Heathrow’s charges are already the highest in Europe, and we estimate they could rise to as much as £32. Gatwick’s are lower but would rise significantly.

These large increases lead some to question the viability of all the proposals we are evaluating and to ask whether it might prove more cost-effective to expand regional airports instead.

We considered that option in last year’s interim report and rejected it. While it is vital that other airports — including London Stansted — expand, it is not possible to direct airlines to fly from airports where they do not believe demand is adequate. Constraining supply of take-off slots in the south east, where demand is highest, would result in lower overall connectivity and a less efficient, less carbon-efficient network.

Still, to assess whether expanded capacity in the south east is likely to be a good investment, we need to consider the market reaction. Although we expect runways and terminals to be privately financed, some related public infrastructure spending will be needed — more at Heathrow than Gatwick.
Forecasting airline and passenger responses is not simple. Few foresaw the dramatic growth in low-cost carriers at the expense of national airlines; will that continue? In particular, will the low-cost model spread to long-haul routes or will the attractions of the large network airlines (especially to time-pressed businesspeople) allow them to maintain or increase market share? Does the future lie with “hubs”, collecting and distributing traffic to smaller airports, or point-to-point traffic?

New analysis prepared for the Airport Commission by the International Transport Forum and SEO Economic Research, published this week, argues that UK aviation is likely to be driven by two developments.

The first is the rise of inbound travel from emerging market economies and the associated rise in competition from airlines serving them. The growth of middle classes countries predominantly in southeast Asia is likely to lead to more point-to-point long-haul traffic.
The second development will be new aircraft that are coming into operation, notably the Boeing 787 and the Airbus A350 — both at least 20 per cent more fuel-efficient than the models they replace. They are also quieter, meaning fewer local residents will be affected by noise. They will make it easier for lower-cost carriers to enter the long-haul market, though many have been ordered by network carriers that will also benefit from lower operating costs, potentially adding previously unviable spokes to their hub networks.

With additional runway capacity around London, these trends suggest more direct routes will be available to economically significant destinations, and an increase in the frequency of service on existing routes. Passengers and freight operators would benefit from the time saved from taking a more convenient or more direct route. There would be more airline competition, too, which would be likely to reduce costs.

The research also shows that London’s constrained capacity comes with a cost. Where demand for airport capacity exceeds supply, airlines can earn a return higher than the average cost of supplying a take-off or landing slot. Airports cannot capture these excess returns if their charges are capped, as at Gatwick and Heathrow. If either is allowed to expand, there will be greater opportunity for competition between airlines, and ticket prices may therefore fall, offsetting the higher landing charges new capacity would entail. If this analysis is correct, removing the capacity constraint should benefit passengers, increasing the choice of routes and carriers, potentially at lower cost.”

The writer is chairman of the UK Airports Commission and a professor at Sciences Po http://www.sciencespo.fr/en

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See also

Commission publishes new report on “strategic fit” for its consultation – on possible impact of runways on air travel cost

 

The Airports Commission has published another report to form the background information for its consultation. The consultation is on details of runway plans at two runway options at Heathrow, and one at Gatwick, and ends on 3rd February. The new document is entitled “Impacts of Expanding Airport Capacity on Competition and Connectivity – The case of Gatwick and Heathrow” and is by the International Transport Forum. It comes under the “strategic fit” category, and supports the strategic fit analysis in the consultation. By strategic fit the Commission means:”To provide additional capacity and connectivity in line with the assessment of need” and “To improve the experience of passengers and other users of aviation.” (Nothing to do with those affected by aviation impacts, but not passengers). The new document looks at possible scenarios of what might happen with either a Heathrow or Gatwick runway, and how airlines might react. While it is probable that both airports would have to put up landing charges, to pay for a runway etc, it is likely the extra runway capacity would reduce the cost of slots and therefore lead to lower fares. The extent this might happen is conjecture, as it is not possible to accurately predict airline etc behaviour in future.

http://www.airportwatch.org.uk/2014/12/commission-publishes-new-report-on-strategic-fit-for-its-consultation-on-possible-impact-of-runways-on-air-travel-cost/

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Paper by Dr Alice Bows Larkin on need for air travel demand management to limit growth in aviation CO2 emissions

In a paper in the journal, Climate Policy, Dr Alice Bows Larkin looks at the problem of rising emissions from the international shipping and aviation sectors, and their special treatment. While all sectors face decarbonization for a 2C temperature increase to be avoided, meaningful policy measures that address rising CO2 from international aviation and shipping remain woefully inadequate. Dr Bows Larkin concludes that the more simply structured aviation sector is misguided in pinning too much hope on emissions trading to deliver CO2 cuts in line with 2C. Instead, the solution to aviation playing its part in achieving the 2C target remains controversial and unpopular. It requires demand management for air travel. Or perhaps biofuel, which seems unlikely.  She asks:  “Should aviation, which in a global context continues to be dominated by relatively affluent leisure passengers, take priority over other sectors for the use of sustainable biofuels in preference to less popular policies aiming to curb or even cut growth rates? ….The highly constrained carbon budget commensurate with 2 C does not permit any further delay in rolling out mitigation policies for aviation and shipping.”
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In the Journal “Climate Policy”

All adrift: aviation, shipping, and climate change policy

by Alice Bows-Larkin

(Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research & School of Mechanical
Aerospace and Civil Engineering, University of Manchester, Oxford Road,
Manchester M13 9PL, UK)
Published online: 06 Dec 2014.

Synthesis article.

Abstract:  All sectors face decarbonization for a 2 C temperature increase to be avoided. Nevertheless, meaningful policy measures that address rising CO2 from international aviation and shipping remain woefully inadequate.

Treated with a similar approach within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), they are often debated as if facing comparable
challenges, and even influence each others’ mitigation policies. Yet their strengths and weaknesses have important distinctions.

This article sheds light on these differences so that they can be built upon to improve the quality of debate and ensuing policy development. The article quantifies ‘2 C’ pathways for these sectors, highlighting the need for mitigation measures to be urgently accelerated. It reviews recent developments, drawing attention to one example where a change in aviation mitigation policy had a direct impact on measures to cut CO2 from shipping. Finally, the article contrasts opportunities and barriers towards mitigation.

The article concludes that there is a portfolio of opportunities for short- to medium-term decarbonization for shipping, but its complexity is its greatest barrier to change. In contrast, the more simply structured aviation sector is pinning too much hope on emissions trading to deliver CO2 cuts in line with 2 C. Instead, the solution remains controversial and unpopular – avoiding 2 C requires demand management.

………………….

……….. full paper here 

……… Just the conclusions copied below:

7. Conclusions

International aviation and shipping are distinct from other sectors in terms of governance arrangements to curb their CO2 emissions. They have also had similar CO2 growth rates since 1990, above the global average. Nevertheless, allowing the debate around these sectors to be too closely linked (as in the instance highlighted in the UK) could hamper opportunities for developing targeted measures to cut CO2 emissions in the short to medium term. There is a huge divide between the potential for mitigation in shipping compared with aviation. In short, the shipping industry has many technological and operational options that could cut emissions in the short to medium term. Aviation does
not. Nevertheless, despite many options on the horizon for shipping, its complex organizational nature is a major barrier to change.

In aviation, the limit to technical and operational change has led the industry towards a preference to use a global emissions trading scheme to provide net emission cuts. In other words, the sector expects CO2 savings will generally be made in other sectors of the economy to enable aviation related CO2 to grow or be cut by less. Yet, even with trading, a target of a 50% net CO2 cut is not sufficient to meet the 2 C goal. Ironically, by comparing aviation with shipping, it becomes clear that if there were mitigation options available to the air transport sector, its relatively simple institutional set-up, with its small number of manufacturers, fewer markets and actors, as well as a lower number of major national players, would make incentivizing change practical.

Instead, with emissions trading disconnected from the 2 C challenge, demand-management and biofuels offer the only feasible ways of cutting CO2 in the timescale compatible with the available CO2 budget.

Yet, both raise interesting ethical and moral issues. Should aviation, which in a global context continues to be dominated by relatively affluent leisure passengers (Williams, 2007), take priority over other sectors for the use of sustainable biofuels in preference to less popular policies aiming to curb or even cut growth rates?

The highly constrained carbon budget commensurate with 2 C does not permit any further delay in rolling out mitigation policies for aviation and shipping. All opportunities for urgent change need to be harnessed. Immediate CO2 cuts in the shipping sector could be delivered, at least in waters around port states, through regulations or incentives at a sub-global scale that further encourage and maintain the recent shift towards slow-steaming, better ship efficiency, and the retrofit of low-carbon technologies.

For aviation, pinning so much hope on emissions trading to meet the 2 C challenge is misguided.

Ultimately, an uncomfortable and familiar conclusion for aviation remains: a moratorium on airport expansion at least in wealthy nations is one of the few options available to dampen growth rates within a timeframe befitting of the 2 C target.


 

To cite this article: Alice Bows-Larkin (2014): All adrift: aviation, shipping, and climate change policy,
Climate Policy, DOI: 10.1080/14693062.2014.965125

To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14693062.2014.965125

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More about Dr Alice Bows Larkin

http://www.manchester.ac.uk/research/alice.bows-larkin/publications

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Newark Airport aircraft noise targeted by New York Port Authority in 3-year, $6.6 million study

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is spending $6.6 million on a 3 year study on how to reduce aircraft noise at Newark Liberty International and Teterboro airports. There have been complaints by local residents for years about the level of aircraft noise. The $6.6 million is being paid to an airport noise consulting firm to prepare maps detailing aircraft noise levels for areas of northern New Jersey around the two airports. The study will begin next month, and last through till November 2017. The study is part of an FAA program that provides federal funds for mitigation projects when airport noise exceeds certain levels. The aim is to make noise tolerable, so there can be an increase in flights. The Port Authority and the FAA  are developing new facilities to implement a new air traffic control system intended to meet increasing demand for air travel at Newark, LaGuardia and JFK, which already make up the busiest airport system in the country. A similar study began last month for Kennedy and LaGuardia airports in Queens. The president of a local citizens’ group commented: “Will it result in the reduction of noise? Maybe, maybe not. What it will tell us is what people are being subjected to.” It might lead to a more fair dispersal of flights. 
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Aircraft noise targeted by Port Authority in 3-year, $6.6M study

Residents affected by aircraft noise welcomed news that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey had awarded a $6.6 million contract for a 3-year study of the impact of flights in and out of Newark Liberty International and Teterboro Airports. 

16.12.2014

NEWARK — People living under some of the nation’s busiest air space are hopeful that the skies above may get quieter, now that the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is spending $6.6 million to study how to reduce aircraft noise at Newark Liberty International and Teterboro airports.

“It’s a very positive step,” said Jerome Feder, vice president of the New Jersey Coalition Against Aircraft Noise, a non-profit group. “We’re hopeful. We’ve been looking for them to do this for a long time.”

On Wednesday, the Port Authority commissioners awarded a $6.6 million contract to Harris Miller Miller & Hanson, an airport noise consulting firm based in Burlington, Mass., to prepare maps detailing aircraft noise levels for areas of northern New Jersey around the two airports. The study will begin next month, and last through November 2017.

The Newark/Teterboro study is being conducted under a Federal Aviation Administration program, known as Part 150, that provides federal funds for mitigation projects when airport noise exceeds certain levels.

The studies are being done as the Port Authority and the FAA develop new facilities and implement a new air traffic control system intended to meet increasing demand for air travel at Newark, LaGuardia and JFK, which already make up the busiest airport system in the country.

“It’s a very positive step. We’ve been looking for them to do this for a long time.”

The results of the studies will be used to determine: what areas are affected by aircraft noise and how seriously; what measures can be taken, from new approach routes to sound proofing; and even appropriate zoning, for example where industrial development would be better than residential.

“As we work to deliver 21st Century airports to the region, it’s critical that we serve as good neighbors to those that live close to the airports as well,” Port Authority Vice Chairman Scott Rechler said in a statement.

A similar study began last month for Kennedy and LaGuardia airports in Queens.

“Will it result in the reduction of noise? Maybe, maybe not. What it will tell us is what people are being subjected to,” said Len Schaier, of Port Washington, Long Island, president of Quiet Skies, a Long Island-based group that is part of network of aircraft noise watchdogs in the bi-state region. “I’m encouraged that the studies are starting. I don’t think the studies will stop nose, I think they may redistribute the noise more fairly.”

In the face of projected growth of air travel in the region, Schaier and others are hoping that noise maps being developed by the studies can be combined with the FAA’s new, more precise NextGen air traffic control technology to at least spread out the impact of aircraft noise, if not diminish it overall.

“A highway doesn’t have one lane it has three,” said Ken Kroll, a member of aircraft noise committee of the Forrest Hill Community Association in Newark, which has been battling what it says is significant increase in aircraft noise over the past two years from commercial flights at Newark Liberty and corporate and charter jets at Teterboro.

A shortcoming of the New York and New Jersey studies, according to Kroll and others, is that they will use computer models to assess noise impacts, based on frequency of flights, altitudes, type of aircraft and other factors, not actual noise measurements taken on the ground.

Harris, Miller, Miller & Hanson did not respond to a request for comment.

Fortunately for Forrest Hill, where residents say jets fly so low that their homes shake, a noise monitor was installed in the backyard of one of the association members as a result of the group’s lobbying efforts.

Marylou Bongiorno said her backyard readings are typically well above levels found to pose a risk of cardiovascular disease by the Harvard University School of Public Health, which published a study of the effects of aircraft noise in October 2013.

That risk will remain, Bongiorno said, until something is done about the noise, which may not happen until the study is done in late 2017.

“It’s very frustrating to know that it’s going to be three years before we have some results,” she said.

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2014/12/port_authority_spends_66m_on_aircraft_noise_study_that_residents_hope_will_bring_quiet.html

 

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Speech by Major Richard Streatfeild at the Airports Commission day on Gatwick

Major Richard Streatfeild spoke very effectively at the Airports Commission evidence session on Gatwick. He represents some 18,000 people who live in 11 parish councils on the High Weald, and the High Weald Parish Councils Aviation Action Group. Concern was first alerted earlier this year, when Gatwick changed some flight paths and started to concentrate others, causing much more aircraft noise nuisance than there had been previously. Thousands of people who had not been much over-flown in the past woke up to the new noise nuisance, and in particular, the threat of the situation deteriorating dramatically if Gatwick was allowed another runway. Richard spoke of the loss of trust and confidence in the airport, after repeatedly being told half truths, or lies. He also spoke of the torture, akin to sleep deprivation, of night flights – and gave both Sir Howard and Stewart a present of an alarm clock, set to go off once an hour – to try out for two nights …. to experience a taste of sleep deprivation. He said if Gatwick is selected, people know they will be “in a fight for our lives” and the extent of the battle will be unprecedented, through every means available. He ended by saying: “The solution is simple: Disperse the aircraft and make them fly as high as is safe, stop the night flights and do not build an additional runway.”


Sir Howard,

Thank you for the invitation to be a witness for the Airports Commission.

I am here because I have a mandate from 11 councils in the High Weald representing 18 thousand people. (High Weald Parish Councils).

I am confident that by the time this consultation period finishes the policy that started as the construct of 4 Parish Councils will be adopted either in name or in practice by all of the councils across the High Weald and further afield representing at least 200,000 people.

A year ago we did not exist, I can honestly say that we did not think believe or expect that Gatwick would make your shortlist,  We are growing exponentially and that in itself should challenge your assumptions about deliverability at Gatwick.

I speak for them and we endorse what has been said before by Crispin Blunt and Brendon Sewil. The funding risk and minimal economic benefit of Gatwick expansion is key to not meeting your stated objectives.

The environmental case is none existent.

Perhaps you think it might be socially, politically or legally more acceptable to put new capacity at Gatwick.

I am here to bear witness to the fact that it will not. Not because of the quantity of the effect but the quality. But before that I must bear witness that there has been a catastrophic breach of trust by the airport in assisting the commission in this process.

Yesterday invitations went out to local individuals and Parish Councils to give their views on the scheme. Too late – it will be white paint on the grave.

We all wish to see Gatwick as a successful regional airport so it gives me no pleasure to say they routinely lie to us. As routine business they are prepared to obfuscate, mislead and evade. They even lie about the lie.

As one of my Company Serjeant Majors was prone to say about the more errant Riflemen in my former life, they can’t even lie straight in bed.

For those in the High Weald this is the one that hurts the most. In 2012 Gatwick began to change the way they used the airspace to get more planes into Gatwick taking a longer route and flying over many more people far more often below 4000 feet.

As people began to notice, Gatwick consistently said nothing had changed. That is still their public position. It wasn’t until we got the maps from the CAA under Freedom of Information that proved the change that the chief executive of the CAA told us last week “air traffic controllers had been trying out new vectoring choices” .

We had also discovered that the head of NATS at Gatwick put on a blog in 2013 that there was a trial and the shortened flight path had been removed – Gatwick told us there was no trial and no change. Why did you lie?

They ran a consultation on new flight paths. IPSOS MORI said they would publish the results in September. GATWICK have made liars of IPSOS MORI on their behalf.

And we believe they did so in order that they didn’t have to tell you the results before you put out the consultation. Mr Wingate, why did you get IPSOS MORI to withhold the results from us and the commission?

They continue to mislead us and you – the latest one is that that a new concentrated arrivals and the second runway are not linked. We know it is not possible to get the quantity of planes into Gatwick without those new flightpaths. They are linked – why won’t you be straight with us or the commission?

So trust is gone and so will our economy.

A notable omission from the proposal and consultation documents are the 2 million tourists who come to the high Weald.

300,000 come to Hever Castle alone, to get on the Tudor trail to see the family residence of the mother of the virgin queen. What they get is Virgin Atlantic overshadowing their experience.

250,000 planes a year will kill it dead. Why won’t you release the data at the noise meter at Hever Castle that proves the extent of the intrusion and makes a lie of the noise data in the consultation documents?

Furthermore the new route goes over 6 schools. We know it will damage children’s concentration at school and expose them to high levels of pollution. The heritage, the tranquillity, the quintessential character of the English countryside of the garden of England are about to be lost to the bucket and spade airport, the returning Sunday afternoon boozy boys weekend to Prague and the 1 am flight from Geneva so the Biltons can get a little more chalet time.

Then there is the killer argument. You may have noticed the Senate intelligence committee report into the torture carried out by the CIA in so called black sites across the globe.

Second on their list of abhorrent practices was Sleep deprivation.

Long term sleep deprivation will kill you.

Our quality of life will be diminished and most importantly our life expectancy will shorten, not according to me but the World Health Organisation. It is a key difference between a good neighbour and a bad one.

Heathrow accepts a quota of 3500 night flights not campaigns to maintain 11800. That number is not sleep disturbance it is sleep deprivation.

Heathrow puts the majority of night flights before 11 30 and after 630 but Gatwick,  the bad neighbour, flies in all through the night. The better one – Heathrow – definitely puts all their flights after 0430. The bad, makes night flying as cheap as possible and won’t even acknowledge that there is anything wrong.

This is why Gatwick is such a bad neighbour right now and a will be a worse one in future.

This being the festive season, I have brought you both a Christmas present [to Sir Howard and to Stewart Wingate]. An alarm clock set for 01 something and the snooze button set for an hour. Just time to get into a deep sleep before being woken up. I challenge you to do two nights of it.

I say again and I know something of this for real -Sleep deprivation is physical torture.
So my questions are:

Do either the Commission or the airport really want to facilitate the torture and ultimately the early demise of innocent people? Why is this not costed in?

I also wish to bear witness to our determination to prevent a second runway at Gatwick. If you think the anti-Heathrow campaign is well organised and well-funded by the time 2015 is out you have my word we will make them look like the mad hatters tea party.

We know now that if Gatwick were to be chosen we would be in a fight for our lives. It would be a fight to protect some of the most vulnerable in our communities from dying before they have to, a fight to defend our quality of life from the uncaring and unscrupulous. To protect some of our most precious green and pleasant land from being desecrated for personal and corporate gain.

Sir Howard I hope you really understand what you will ignite.

We will campaign in the newspapers, in the courts, at the ballot box and in parliament. We will fight those battles in Kent, in Sussex and Surrey, in Westminster, Brussels and in Strasbourg. We will call you out in the town halls and the council chambers, in the Treasury, at Revenue and Customs, in the Channel Islands, in the boardrooms in Korea in Australia Abu Dhabi and California; we will take this fight to city, the stock exchange and the old Bailey.

Trustees will be made answerable for your actions. You will find us protesting on the runway and on the airwaves, on your way to work and on your way home. Day and night.

We will not stop and we will not give in until we have a mutually acceptable solution.

The solution is simple: Disperse the aircraft and make them fly as high as is safe, stop the night flights and do not build an additional runway.

Gatwick is big enough already.

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See also two other excellent speeches delivered during the day:

Speech by Sally Pavey at the Airports Commission evidence day on Gatwick

Sally Pavey, a resident of Warnham (close to Horsham, in Sussex) set up a local group – CAGNE – in March 2014, to oppose the “ADNID” flight path trial that Gatwick airport had instigated. The new route for the ADNID flight path was concentrated, with Warnham – which had never before suffered over flight by planes from Gatwick – getting some of the worst of it. CAGNE stands for Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions, and it has blossomed over the past months, as more and more people objected to being guineapigs, without warning or consultation from Gatwick – to a level of noise that made life hell for thousands. Sally spoke passionately, and effectively and among the many points she raised is the lack of trust by local communities in the airport, from repeated instances of being given wrong or partial information, or being ignored. For many, trust in the airport will never be regained. Gatwick submitted their runway plans to the Commission without even waiting for the end of its consultation with the public. Sally: “We will stand in the way of this off shore owned company. We will show them they have made a bad investment in Gatwick. We will use with every means at our disposal to stop a 2nd runway … we will not stop opposing a 2nd runway at Gatwick Airport.”

Click here to view full story…

 

Great speech by Crispin Blunt MP at the Airports Commission Gatwick evidence day

The Airports Commission held their second evidence day, this time on Gatwick (the Heathrow day was on 3rd December). The format of the day was to give Stewart Wingate time to set out his runway plans and promote them. There were then speeches by Henry Smith MP and Crisipin Blunt MP, as well as others from Brendon Sewill (GACC), Sally Pavey (CAGNE), and Major Richard Streatfeild (HWPCAAG) for community groups. A range of councillors then spoke, as well as three people from the business organisations. Crispin Blunt spoke very strongly against the runway proposals, and the text of his speech is copied below. Interestingly, to pick out just two comments, he said – on the financing of the project – the claimed need for commercial confidence is in error because redactions in Gatwick published documents on tax, financing, profit and loss, cash flow etc and the assumptions that underlie these figures are critical to enable MPs, the public etc to evaluate the airport’s proposal. Also that Gatwick is served only by a single rail and motorway connection. The airport, its passengers and its airlines is already dangerously vulnerable to disruption. It’s worth reading the speech.

Click here to view full story…

 

Read more »

Speech by Sally Pavey at the Airports Commission evidence day on Gatwick

Sally Pavey, a resident of Warnham (close to Horsham, in Sussex) set up a local group – CAGNE – in March 2014, to oppose the “ADNID” flight path trial that Gatwick airport had instigated. The new route for the ADNID flight path was concentrated, with Warnham – which had never before suffered over flight by planes from Gatwick – getting some of the worst of it. CAGNE stands for Communities Against Gatwick Noise and Emissions, and it has blossomed over the past months, as more and more people objected to being guineapigs, without warning or consultation from Gatwick – to a level of noise that made life hell for thousands.  CAGNE now represents people over a wide area. Sally spoke passionately, and effectively and among the many points she raised is the lack of trust by local communities in the airport, from repeated instances of being given wrong or partial information, or being ignored. For many, trust in the airport will never be regained. Gatwick submitted their runway plans to the Commission without even waiting for the end of its consultation with the public.  Sally: “We will stand in the way of this off shore owned company. We will show them they have made a bad investment in Gatwick. We will use with every means at our disposal to stop a 2nd runway … we will not stop opposing a 2nd runway at Gatwick Airport.”
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Speech by Sally Pavey (Chair of CAGNE):

A year ago I would never of thought I would be here today, talking about Gatwick Airport.

Thank you for asking me to speak on behalf of CAGNE, Communities Against Gatwick Noise Emissions.

Let me start by saying that we are not opposed to aviation.
And we are not opposed to Gatwick.

But we are opposed to what Gatwick is proposing; an expansion of the airport that will devastate our communities and this whole region of England.
Gatwick’s proposals will impact our lives in three main areas:

• Firstly, local towns, services and amenities will be pushed far beyond their limits in ways that can only spell disaster for the precious countryside we have an obligation to protect

• Secondly, local infrastructure and roads will be swamped as airport workers and holidaymakers attempt to navigate a single motorway and single railway line that reaches Gatwick from London.
It spells disaster for local roads on a daily basis let alone if there was an accident or closure

• Thirdly, our quiet rural areas will be hit by unprecedented levels of new and increased noise.
Many of our communities will be exposed to the impact of aircraft noise for the very first time.

The recent flightpath trial is the very reason so many people, hardworking Mums and Dads, have come together to form CAGNE

Estimates say up to 90,000 more workers would be needed for an expanded Gatwick – an airport bigger than Heathrow planted right in the middle of this community.

Only 26,000 people currently claim jobseekers’ allowance in this region.
* Where will the remaining 64,000 people come from?
* Where will they live as 1 in 5 that work at Heathrow live next to Heathrow?
* How will they travel to the airport?
By train? Or will they drive?

Without this unnecessary expansion, we already have a shortfall of almost 5,000 homes every year in Gatwick’s six local councils.

If we accept, on face value, Gatwick’s ‘guesstimate’ that only another 9,300 homes would be needed, where will they come from if we can’t keep up with existing demand?

And where will they be built? What parts of our countryside in West Sussex will we be forced to lose to make way for bricks and concrete? Not forgetting the ancient woodlands the runway will remove

What schools for children, what health services, what hospitals and GPs will be provided and who will pay for them?

In all of the documentation published by the Commission, many of these issues have been forgotten.

The enormous knock-on affect and strain on an area un-equipped to absorb an expansion of this size and magnitude.

An airport bigger than Heathrow will be airlifted into the English countryside, a countryside we know and love – the reason why many of us moved to the area.

Rural areas are priced on tranquillity and the surrounding beauty of its countryside. It does not benefit from inflated London prices that are not affected by aircraft noise. This is not London, nor do we want it to be.

By 2030, we can expect 60 million passengers to be using local transport to get to and from a 2 runway Gatwick.
For those of us locals, we know that ‘public transport’ can only mean one of two routes – one road and one rail.

Even with improvements currently in the pipeline, the M23 will reach capacity by 2030 and exceed it by 2040 – this is without any expansion at Gatwick.

Similarly on the rail network, planned changes will only create enough additional capacity to meet around half of new passenger demand. Commuters already paying a premium will have to endure slow, crowded services in to London- something that the Commission’s own report clearly illustrates.

Our commuter already endure the Brighton to London mainline which is already pushed to the brink. It is the second most crowded in the country adding around 90,000 extra travellers to the area is not going to help.
What a welcome for tourists and what a great way to get to and from work for the rest of us!

With all due respect, I would like to ask the Airport’s Commission how you have arrived at the conclusion that one road and one rail line can accommodate 60 million passengers – and that’s without the local people who live here and rely on the roads to go about their daily lives.

Moreover, what will happen when there is an accident on the M23 and M25 and passengers are forced onto local roads to catch their flights?

Or similarly, when there is inevitable disruption on the trains?

It would seem Plan B is to heap more misery on local people, we already have volunteers answering 999 calls.

Gatwick’s proposals also ignore the fact that aircraft noise in rural areas is far more intrusive than in an urban environment. In fact, can Mr Wingate even tell us how many people will be affected by noise under his new proposals? Every time he is asked, he seems to give a different figure but of course it only ever be within the magical 57leq.

Gatwick have created a moving feast for all their neighbours by continually changing the story.

That is why so many opponents are here today.

The views of those affected have been ignored. Those trying to call Gatwick’s noise complaint line today receive a message that Gatwick “will not repeatedly reply or continually discuss the same subject”.

They omitted to publish the 6,300 that said “NO” to a new runway from their earlier consultation. As Gatwick’s neighbour we have a right to be heard about what happens to our community.

Lots of people are making the same points and it should not be systematically ignored.

It is with this that I thank the Commission for holding this very important meeting with Gatwick’s management present to hear the community voice.

Gatwick’s new runway consultation was instigated in May – by which time Gatwick’s proposals had already been submitted to the Airport Commission.

It demonstrates a disregard for the views of local people. Indeed, the proposals they consulted on were not even accurate – for instance they stated passenger numbers would be 87 million when the true figure is more than 10 per cent higher at 97 million.

I recently asked Mr Wingate why Gatwick would not attend local meetings, and he commented that they would not. Now as the Commission arrives in town, Mr Wingate offers to meet protest groups about aircraft noise.

For Gatwick this may be about business, but for our communities, it is about the quality of peoples’ lives

Forge Wood, a new residential, primary school with recreational areas will be 1 mile from the end of the new runway but it is not shown on any maps.

Gatwick would have many believe that it has great local support, but if it took the time to engage with the communities, it would soon appreciate the full weight of concern and opposition – the thousands of people and different organisations that we represent today being a clear demonstration of that.

With the full endorsement of many West Sussex parish councils, representing thousands of people, I can firmly say we strongly oppose a 2ndrunway at Gatwick.

Not because of the secrecy, or the lack of consultation. Not because it takes a Commission to force Mr Wingate to speak to the community, but because this is an ill-considered proposal that does not work on so many levels.

It has no consideration of the blight on our community, the strain on our local services, the explosion of new noise on villages and the transport and housing required.

Expansion at Gatwick will leave a permanent mark on yet another part of the British countryside, something that all of us in the room will fight to protect for future generations.

Gatwick is not the easy option.

Gatwick is Big Enough.

We will fight this all the way to stop Gatwick expansion.

We will stand in the way of this off shore owned company. We will show them they have made a bad investment in Gatwick.
We will use with every means at our disposal to stop a second runway being built at Gatwick.

Let me be clear – if you approve this scheme, we will not stop opposing a 2nd runway at Gatwick Airport.

Thank you.

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See also

Great speech by Crispin Blunt MP at the Airports Commission Gatwick evidence day

The Airports Commission held their second evidence day, this time on Gatwick (the Heathrow day was on 3rd December). The format of the day was to give Stewart Wingate time to set out his runway plans and promote them. There were then speeches by Henry Smith MP and Crisipin Blunt MP, as well as others from Brendon Sewill (GACC), Sally Pavey (CAGNE), and Major Richard Streatfeild (HWPCAAG) for community groups. A range of councillors then spoke, as well as three people from the business organisations. Crispin Blunt spoke very strongly against the runway proposals, and the text of his speech is copied below. Interestingly, to pick out just two comments, he said – on the financing of the project – the claimed need for commercial confidence is in error because redactions in Gatwick published documents on tax, financing, profit and loss, cash flow etc and the assumptions that underlie these figures are critical to enable MPs, the public etc to evaluate the airport’s proposal. Also that Gatwick is served only by a single rail and motorway connection. The airport, its passengers and its airlines is already dangerously vulnerable to disruption. It’s worth reading the speech.

Click here to view full story…

 

Read more »