Eurocontrol publishes airport environmental guidance – for consultation
Eurocontrol is the European agency dealing with European airspace matters, funded by European governments. It oversees airspace matters, including those in the UK. It has now produced a very European, written-by-committee-of-bureaucrats sort of document, (Specification for Collaborative Environmental Management (CEM)) on guidance to airports on managing noise and carbon emissions. It is very guarded, and contains a large number of repetitions of the words “may”, “shall”, “should,” to “monitor and assess.” Its aim is to “formalize collaboration among “core” stakeholders—airport operators, airlines and air navigation service providers ” – and try to set out basics of communication with communities. But Eurcontrol said: “….is it is voluntary. There is no enforcement by Eurocontrol or the European Union.” But while voluntary, the specification is an official Eurocontrol document, for consultation till 29th November. It is aware of the noise issues affecting a range of communities and trade-offs between communities, and between noise and emissions.
Eurocontrol Publishes Airport Environmental Guidance
Eurocontrol has published a “high level, generic protocol” airport stakeholders can follow to jointly manage airport noise and emissions issues. The agency will formally launch the collaborative environmental management (CEM) specification at the Airports Council International 2014 Airport Exchange conference, which will be held November 3-5 in Paris.
Several years in development, the CEM specification serves to formalize collaboration among “core” stakeholders—airport operators, airlines and air navigation service providers (Ansps)—and sets out requirements and recommended practices necessary to establish working arrangements. It supports stakeholders’ “common awareness and understanding of the interdependencies and constraints facing each other’s business,” when confronted with the environmental impacts of air traffic operations.
“The first thing to state about the specification is it is voluntary. There is no enforcement by Eurocontrol or the European Union,” said Andrew Watt, Eurocontrol head of environment. It would be difficult for a European-wide organization to impose requirements on airports for local noise and air quality issues, he added. What the CEMspecification does is lay out a “process” that stakeholders can follow, for example, to renew environmental permits, build new infrastructure or introduce new procedures such as continuous descent approaches.
“We have fairly good anecdotal evidence that at times they don’t necessarily cooperate as well as they could,” Watt said. “That means that maybe one of them takes an initiative for very good reasons, but maybe forgets to inform (the others)” and the initiative fails. “We know that there are a number of airports in Europe in which the three organizations cooperate extremely well, and using that as an example we’ve developed this specification.”
Specific airports, Ansps, regulatory authorities and trade organizations including the International Air Transport Association and Airports Council International (ACI) support the specification, which complements ACI’s airport carbon accreditation scheme, Watt said.
While voluntary, the specification is nevertheless an official Eurocontrol document. Under the agency’s notice of proposed rulemaking process, it was subject to a formal comment period last year that extended from September 29 to November 29. The agency held a consultation workshop in May at which a negotiated text was agreed, becoming version 1.0 of the specification. “It’s gone through an official Eurocontrol process,” Watt said. “It’s out in the public domain and people can use it or not as they wish.”
The EUROCONTROL Specification for Collaborative Environmental Management was submitted to a formal written consultation from 24 September 2013 to 29 November 2013 using the EUROCONTROL Notice of Proposed Rule-Making (ENPRM) mechanism.
- Draft EUROCONTROL Specification for Collaborative Environmental Management (CEM) (pdf)
- Consultation Response Sheet (doc)
- Distribution List (pdf)
The document says:
“The Collaborative Environmental Management (CEM) Specification formalises collaboration among the core operational stakeholders at airports by setting out generic, high level requirements and recommended practices necessary to establish CEM working arrangements in a pragmatic protocol.
“CEM supports and benefits core operational stakeholders’ common awareness and understanding of the interdependencies and constraints facing each other’s business. This in turn can facilitate the development of shared environmental solutions, on which they can then collaborate in joint planning and implementation.”
The EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Today Airport Operators, Air Navigation Service Providers (ANSPs) and Aircraft Operators
are already investing significant effort in dealing with the environmental impacts resulting
from their combined operations at and around airports. However, these impacts, in general
noise and emissions, remain a significant constraining factor to efficient and sustainable
Sustainable airport development is essential for improving European ATM capacity and flight
efficiency. To facilitate and strengthen stakeholders’ actions in this respect, and also to
support the wider sustainable development of the aviation sector as a whole, this
EUROCONTROL Specification for Collaborative Environmental Management (CEM) has
been drafted together with them.
The CEM Specification formalises collaboration among the core operational stakeholders at
airports by setting out generic, high level requirements and recommended practices
necessary to establish CEM working arrangements in a pragmatic protocol.
CEM supports and benefits core operational stakeholders’ common awareness and
understanding of the interdependencies and constraints facing each other’s business. This
in turn can facilitate the development of shared environmental solutions, on which they can
then collaborate in joint planning and implementation.
In addition, the CEM working arrangements facilitate a robust and transparent dialogue that
benefits relations with National Regulators, local and regional authorities, land-use planning
authorities, local communities (including Residents’ Associations) and local businesses (Non-exhaustive list and depends on local culture and circumstances ).
Furthermore, CEM can support stakeholders in respect of contributing to the realisation of
the Single European Sky (SES) objective 9 Regulation EC No 549/2004 as amended by Regulation EC 1070/2009 Art.1 Objective and scope ,) on the sustainable development of the air transport system and improving the overall performance of air traffic management and air navigation services for air traffic in Europe, with a view to meeting the requirements of all airspace users.
CEM supports commitment both to regulatory and industry-led voluntary environmental
impact reduction schemes.
EUROCONTROL Specifications have a voluntary status and are developed to support
Member States and stakeholders. This specification may provide a possible means of
compliance with certain requirements related to SES and aviation environment-related
“Up to 70% of medium to large airports across Europe are currently facing challenges to grow and/or capacity constraints for environmental reasons . A higher number anticipate difficulties in securing planning approval to grow as a direct result of environmental concerns. Many airports are also facing increasing social and regulatory pressure when renewing environmental permits, the contents of which may lead to further limitations on airport capacity. The challenges facing larger airports are increasingly applicable to smaller ones due in part:
– the decrease in public tolerance of environmental nuisance and potential health concerns; and
– to the growth of traffic during peak and off-peak hours.
Although numerous stakeholders operate at an airport, the public generally views the airport operator as the responsible entity for the environmental impacts. In many instances the airport operator also has legal responsibility for the airport’s impact. Ultimately an airport ill
aim to maximise its sustainable development as a fixed asset.”
“Typically, a compromise or balance is required to ensure that a negative impact in one area does not outweigh the value of a positive impact in another area. However, positive and negative impacts may also be found between different aspects of the same impact area. Examples include (but are not limited to):
– Noise versus fuel burn/CO2 emissions: The development of Noise Preferential Routes (NPRs) may reduce the population affected by noise but may increase fuel burn and CO2 due to the additional track miles to be flown.
– Fuel burn/CO2 emissions versus capacity: Optimizing the route structure to enable flights to fly closer to the user-preferred trajectory may result in a complicated route structure which has a negative impact upon capacity.
– Noise versus noise: The concentration of aircraft trajectories in a particular area due to advanced navigation performance may result in a reduction in the total population exposed to noise but increase the noise impact on the population that will be exposed.
– Noise versus noise: The use of Noise Abatement Departure Procedures (NADPs) may reduce the noise exposure on a certain community near to the airport but increase the noise concentration on communities further from the airport.
– Capacity versus fuel burn/CO2 emissions: An increase in airport capacity may result in a more efficient operation when measured by reduced emissions per flight; however, such an increase in capacity may inevitably lead to an increase in total emissions.
– Fuel burn/CO2 emissions versus fuel burn/CO2 emissions: An optimisation of
trajectories in the TMA may result in reduced track miles to be flown in the TMA
(reduced fuel burn) but not necessarily lead to a more efficient transition to en-route
airspace outside of the TMA, which could result in an overall increase in trajectory
inefficiency and consequently to increased fuel burn.
Consideration of the interdependencies and trade-offs between the different impacts of an operational change can only be truly determined at the local level. The priorities of the stakeholders will differ according to local requirements, conditions and expectations. An acceptable compromise for all parties can only thus be achieved through effective collaboration among all the relevant stakeholders.”
What is Eurocontrol?
“The Agency’s operational expenditure is financed by EUROCONTROL’s Member States. It covers core and support functions of the Agency, logistics and performance improvement. Bank loans are contracted for additional capital expenditures.” https://www.eurocontrol.int/articles/budget
EUROCONTROL is an international organisation founded in 1960 and composed of Member States from the European Region, including the European Community which became a member in 2002. We are involved in almost every aspect of air traffic management, in close cooperation with our stakeholders.
Our main activities
- The Maastricht Upper Area Control Centre provides an air traffic control service for the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and northern Germany.
- The Central Route Charges Office handles billing across Europe.
- The Network Manager has built on the role of the former Central Flow Management Unit and now proactively manages the entire ATM Network (with nearly ten million flights every year), in close liaison with the air navigation service providers, airspace users, the military and airports.
It is now using its experience to develop the Centralised Services initiative, which will open up some services to market competition at a Pan-European level, generating significant savings and operational efficiencies.
- We support the European Commission, EASA and National Supervisory Authorities in their regulatory activities.
- We are actively involved in research, development and validation, including a substantial contribution to the SESAR Joint Undertaking. However our efforts are not limited to SESAR but rather are focused on delivering tangible results which will improve the ATM system performance in the medium and long term.
- We have a unique approach to civil-military aviation coordination in Europe .
We have over 2000 highly qualified professionals spread over four European countries, who make sure that the appropriate expertise and resources are deployed to address ATM challenges. See what our scope of expertise covers.
Our role is quite unique in Europe, because:
- we are the only organisation where EU and non-EU Member States come together to discuss Single European Sky implementation;
- we provide the technical expertise for building the Single European Sky;
- we offer a platform for civil-military coordination, building on decades of strong military involvement in our activities;
- we support the day-to-day operations of the European air traffic management (ATM) network;
- we help and coordinate the response to crisis situations in Europe;
- we provide public service functions that only reap their full benefits if organised at a pan-European level, such as the collection of route charges.
Eight rungs on the ladder of citizen participation (Sherry Arnstein 1969)