Munich Airport


 Wikipedia on Munich Airport 

Munich Campaign “Stop The Third Runway” website



What the anti-airport protests in Germany and in Munich are about 

From Florien Sperk, of Bavarian Young Friends of the Earth (May 2012)


Federal Court gives clearance for Munich airport 3rd runway, and environmentalists fight on

Munich airport, Germany’s second largest by number of passengers, has now won approval for its plans to build a 3rd runway. A federal court rejected the remaining appeals against the plan. Munich airport currently serves around 40 million passengers a year and expects this to rise to about 58 million by 2025, so it is hard to see how it needs yet another runway. The most recent attempt to block the plan, after a decision in favour of it by a Munich court in 2014, was brought by a Bavarian environmental group, Bund Naturschutz, and 5 individuals. The Leipzig-based federal court rejected a similar complaint brought by local municipalities in February – now the court says the Munich court decision is fully binding and the runway can go ahead. In 2012 in a Munich referendum, a majority of residents opposed the plan. Bund Naturschutz called on politicians to uphold the popular vote from 2012 and said it would file a complaint with the European Commission for disregard of European laws on nature conservation. A Bund Naturschutz spokesperson said: “Neither Bavaria nor Munich needs the third runway. Lufthansa is the only one that will benefit.” The airport is owned by the state of Bavaria, the German government and the city of Munich. Lufthansa uses Munich as its 2nd largest base after Frankfurt pushes for the expansion.

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Runway-trick: State Government hopes to privatise Munich airport in order to build the runway

(Apologies for bad translation into English. German original here )


Munich – The State Government is already planning behind the scenes a reconstruction of the Munich airport company into a corporation. That is the currently most realistic scenario, our newspaper exclusively reported, citing high government circles.

Several participating ministries have already checked that it was legally clearly feasible. Then a third runway could be built, against the wishes of the city of Munich. So far Munich airport has three shareholders: Free State (51%), Federal Government (26%) and Munich (23%). Federal and state governments want to expand the airport, but the city feels politically bound through the referendum of 2012 that said “No”. In the structure of society as a GmbH Munich can block the third runway.
A transformation into a corporation (AG), would be decided in the majority, is possible even against the will of the city within a maximum of three years due to clauses in the partnership agreement, according to sources in the CSU. (CSU is the Christian Social Union).

An IPO plan – known as rumor for months – had consistently been denied the State Government. In fact, the current plan does not contain that airport-AG is a publicly listed company on the stock exchange. However, the city is to be offered to deliver the shares over the counter. Only when the last outstanding court judgment has been delivered, the government will want to express it openly. Finance Minister Markus Söder (CSU) therefore calls on colleagues not to speculate and discuss this now. “The road map is available. Until the procedures are completed. All should abide by this clear line,” he told the newspaper. Munich’s mayor Dieter Reiter (SPD) has already announced resistance to the case of a conversion. He is thinking about a lawsuit. “You can not just out box us.”


Opponents of 3rd Munich runway say the airport’s number of flights is still falling

Munich airport has been planning a third runway for some time, but opponents have succeeded in holding it back. The runway was considered necessary in 2007 and 2008, when the number of air passengers and the number of flights was growing. However, with the recession and with the use of larger planes by airlines like Lufthansa, which use Munich airport, there are now far fewer flights than there were at their peak. Runway opponents say that, in contrast to over-optimistic forecasts of future numbers of passengers and flights, the reality is that the airport now does not need another runway. In 2007 there were around 432,000 flights. In 2012 there were around 398,000. In 2013 there were around 382,000. The number has been declining steadily, even if the number of passengers and the amount of air freight is more constant. The airport management admit the forecasts were too high, but say the trend to ever larger planes will soon end, and the numbers of flights will rise. Opponents are using the falling numbers to fight the runway. The runway has permission but the decision is currently being reviewed by the Court., and the airport cannot yet start work on it.

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5% fewer flights used Munich airport in 2013 than 2012 – but airport planning 3rd runway

March 3, 2014

In Munich, campaigners against the building of a 3rd runway remain defiant in spite of a court ruling that the building of a 3rd runway would be legal. There were extraordinary scenes in the court room when the judge gave his ruling. Campaigners, who had packed the building, all stood up and sang the Bavarian national anthem. The judge had to clear the court. The campaigners are confident that the 3rd runway may never be built because the number of aircraft using the existing runways at Munich is falling. The figures for 2013 show that though there were 0.8% more passengers using Munich airport in 2013 than in 2012, but that the number of air transport movements (flights) fell by 5%. That is a substantial reduction. The campaign against the new runway has repeatedly questioned the economic case for building a runway for which there is not sufficient demand. For all 3 airports in Bavaria (Munich, Nuremburg and Memmingen) the number of air passengers did not grow in 2013, and the number of flights fell by 5.2%. The volume of air freight and mail using Munich airport fell by 1% in 2013. So no growing demand there.

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Bavarian Administrative Court rules that building a 3rd runway at Munich airport is lawful

February 19, 2014

The Bavarian government in southern Germany have been trying for some time to get consent for a 3rd runway at Munich airport, to the north of the existing airport. The 300 or so runway opponents in the court greeted the news with boos and by singing the Bavaria national anthem. On 19th February the Bavarian Administrative Court (VGH) ruled that the runway can go ahead, when they rejected the 17 lawsuits against the project. The project was halted by a referendum in June 2012, when by a majority vote the people of Munich expressed their opposition to the runway, which would demolish the village of Attaching. However the legal judgement is not the end to the story, and the fight is expected to continue. Those opposed to the runway point out that a runway is not needed as the number of flights has fallen over recent years and the current runways have plenty of spare capacity, with the advent of larger aircraft. Though the result of the 2012 referendum was only valid for one year, the political parties in Munich are very aware if local opposition to the runway, and they need their votes. It is the state government and economic lobbies that want the runway. Opponents.will fight on.    Click here to view full story…



Munich campaign hands in 80,000 signature petition against 3rd runway to state parliament

July 24, 2013

On 17th July, the BUND Naturschutz (the largest environmental organisation in Germany) and the “AufgeMUCkt” Action Alliance handed in a petition to the state parliament against the construction of a third runway at Munich Airport. Nearly 80,000 people have signed the petition from all over Bavaria. The petition was handed to the Chairman of the Economic Committee (CSU) and someone from the Environment Committee at the parliament. The campaigners asked the politicians to please take note of the will of the people and decide against allowing a new runway. One campaign leader, Helga Stiegl Meier explained that, among other things, the number of aircraft movements at Munich Airport has been stagnate for years, which she said proves that there is no need for a 3rd runway. Another spokesman said the region has no need of furher aviation expansion, and sustainable transport in Bavaria is facing very different challenges, such as future supplies of cheap oil. The new parliament will have to decide after the state elections in the autumn on a third runway.     Click here to view full story…


Munich conference – airport residents’ campaigns across Europe connect their fight against the aviation lobby

25.6.2013Over 250 people from across Europe attended the European Aviation Campaigners Conference in Munich at the weekend, where they heard accounts of campaigners against expansion in many different countries. The conference produced a manifesto which included a call for an end to night flights and an end to tax-breaks for the aviation industry.  They also called for no more runways to be  built in Europe, and a shift from short-haul flights to rail,  the abolition of subsidies for the aviation sector  and active control of noise. The conference also had sessions on effective campaigning, including direct action.   Those who attended the conference came away inspired. They were in no doubt that the conference will stimulate collective across Europe to campaign for change. The united call is to ‘tame the aviation industry’.  They say health, independent living, and an intact environment must have higher priority than economic interests. There is an English version of the Manifesto at this link.

Munich residents vote against new 3rd runway at Munich airport – 54% said NO

June 17, 2012    Munich residents voted against development of a 3rd runway, in a poll by the City of Munich, which owns 23% of the runway (state and federal government own the rest). Just over 54% of polled voters were against the new runway and 45.7% in favour, according to preliminary results of the vote on Sunday.  Though the city only owns part of the airport, this is thought to be a veto. Munich Mayor Christian Ude said he would accept the result “without ifs or buts.” Bavaria’s state government, however, said it still hopes the runway could eventually be built. Munich is Germany’s second-biggest airport. The vote has dealt another blow to airlines clamouring for growth in Germany. A German district government ruled in favour of the €1.2 billion euro Munich runway project almost a year ago. This vote shows, quote: “how difficult it has become to make clear the significance of important infrastructure projects in our country,’ according to the Munich airport chief. Click here to view full story…


New AirportWatch BLOG.  The German Spring Takes Off

15th June 2012    On the weekend that campaigners occupy the centre of Munich, John Stewart outlines the story of the nationwide protests against airport expansion taking place in Germany, at Frankfurt, Berlin and Munich.  And the implications this has for aviation policy in the UK.  At a time when the industry is pressing once again for a third runway at Heathrow, it likes to give the impression there is little real opposition to expansion in the rest of Europe.  The German experience tells a very different story. “It is impossible at this stage to predict what will happen in Germany.  Or in France.  But the protests have almost certainly changed the landscape forever.  It is becoming increasingly difficult to expand airports anywhere in Western Europe.  That is the new reality that governments and the aviation industry have got to face up to.”  Read the blog


Opponents of the third runway climb Siegestor (Victory Tower) in Munich

8.6.2012 (de Bild)

Action against third runway at Munich

Environmentalists have with a spectacular action on Friday in Munich protested against the planned third runway at the airport.  They fixed banners reading “Stop the third runway madness!” on the Victory Tower. And “No on 17.6.». The organization Robin Wood appealed to the electorate, to vote against the construction of the runway in Erdinger Moos in the referendum on 17 June.  The activists were supported by Germany Plane Stupid, a community of action against the airport expansion. Their common demand: Their common demand: A statement by Mayor Christian UDE (SPD), on how he is able to justify supporting the expansion of the airport, as well as the Festival for the environment and sustainable mobility ,as patron of Streetlife. Link to article 


Munich protest banner drop – “No Third Runway” – off the spectacular Stadhaus 

May 30, 2012

Protesters from Plane Stupid Germany have performed a stunning protest against the proposed third runway at Munich airport. They displayed two large vertical banners beside the huge clock, just above the Munich Stadhaus world-famous Glockenspiel. One banner reads “KOA Dritte” – No Third Runway. The other reads “Weltstadt” with a heart, as Munich has as one of its slogans, World City With a Heart. The protest is about runway plans, without a democratic referendum, and that the airport has tried to influence the decision process by contributing about €1 million. The new runway would demolish a village, ruin the homes of many people and devastate a huge area. Plane Stupid also fear the contribution to climate change, as the airport is the largest CO2 emitter in Bavaria.  Click here to view full story…

Explaining the campaign against Munich’s possible 3rd runway, from Young Friends of the Earth, Bavaria

May 26, 2012    Young Friends of the Earth Bavaria have written about why they are opposing the planned third runway, and why it is not needed – as well as the environmental damage it would do. Their short briefing on what is happening at Munich gives useful detail. The plan for the runway is only to that there will never be delays of more than 4 minutes to flights, even if numbers double, over the next 20 to 30 years. Almost unbelievable to build a runway for that, especially if flight numbers are not growing – and as the airport is losing money and has debts now of €2.7 billion already. Munich airport is already the largest carbon emitter in Bavaria, emitting about 10% of Bavaria’s CO2. In Germany all aviation issues are planned and decided at a local and regional level by town halls, not at a national level. So, until this year, there has been a lack of a national debate around aviation. But this has now changed.    Click here to view full story…


John Stewart on Strategy: Munich can become German Heathrow

Video (53 minutes) of the talk John Stewart gave in Munich, in spring 2012, about the campaign to stop a third runway at Heathrow.   YouTube.         

And 2 other short videos from the Munich campaigners (in German) – the first one with spoof air hostesses and the second with a song including yodelling against the 3rd runway.


Munich now Europe’s 6th busiest airport, overtaking Rome; decision on 3rd runway to be made in June

March 15, 2012    Munich airport is Lufthansa’s 2nd largest base in Germany after Frankfurt. A third runway has been proposed for the airport and last week, a variety of supporters from across the political and business spectrum got together to promote the benefits of an additional runway. A decision is due in June as to whether the airport can proceed with its plans. Campaigners are getting organised to oppose the planned building of a new 3rd runway at Munich. The case for a new runway there is weak because the existing runways are nowhere near capacity, most of the flights from Munich are domestic so could transfer to rail, and there is very low unemployment in the area.   Click here to view full story…

Munich protesters picnic in the terminal to protest against 3rd runway, and send  a message in song to Heathrow opponents – “We shall overcome”

YouTube   (1 min 12 secs) 24.3.2012



Noise ban provides nightmares for German airports and airlines but better sleep for campaigning residents

April 21, 2012      GreenAir online has a long and comprehensive article about what has been going on in Germany recently, with the huge protests at Frankfurt against the 4th runway, and against night flights – which have now been stopped over a 6 hour period. Also the protests at Cologne Bonn Airport where there is now a night flight ban. And protests in Munich against plans for a new 3rd runway. There will also be a 6 hour night flight ban at Berlin’s new Brandenburg International Airport when it opens in June. Airlines like Lufthansa are complaining, and claiming they cannot run an efficient and profitable freight operation without night flights being permitted. The German Aviation Assoc claims there are no such bans at Amsterdam, Paris, London or Dubai. But the German opposition has been very effecive and got results.      Click here to view full story…


Thousands gather at German airports to protest against aircraft noise

March 27, 2012    On Saturday 24th, thousands across Germany – perphaps as many as 30,000 – took part in protests at airports, against airport expansion and aircraft noise. At Frankfurt airport there were around 10,000 people, wanting a night flight ban from 22:00 until 6:00 and a cap on the number of take-offs and landings each day. At Berlin there were about 10,000 protesters against the planned new Brandenburg airport. And at Munich airport, over 500 people had a picnic in the terminal, protesting against a planned 3rd runway, the decision on which is due in June. There were also protests at Halle, Düsseldorf, Leipzig, Bonn and Cologne – as well as at Nantes. Click here to view full story…

 Munich picnic. Very German.



Munich could become a German Heathrow if local opposition manages to block 3rd runway plans

March 2, 2012

John Stewart and some other campaigners recently visited Germany, to see the current protests against airport expansion there. John has written about their visit. He says campaigners are getting organised to oppose the planned building of a new 3rd runway at Munich. The case for a new runway there is weak because the existing runways are nowhere near capacity, most of the flights from Munich are domestic so could transfer to rail, and there is very low unemployment in the area. Visiting Frankfurt, they attended one of the regular Monday evening protests. The movement there driven by the concern about climate change, have brought together a first-rate coalition of environmental activists, local residents, sympathetic politicians and academic experts. They are a considerable force to be reckoned with.    Click here to view full story…


Saturday 24th March: Tens of Thousands expected at Nationwide Protests against Airport Expansion in Germany

March 22, 2012      Same Day: Major demonstration in Nantes in SW France


UK airport campaigners have sent messages of support to their fellow campaigners in Germany and France who will be staging major demonstrations against airport expansion on Saturday 24th March. In Germany tens of thousands of people are expected to turn out in at least five cities. In Frankfurt as many as 20,000 people could occupy the terminal. And, in Munich the campaigners against the proposed 3rd runway will hold as picnic in the terminal. In Nantes the demonstrators will occupy the centre of the city. There will also be protests in Berlin, Cologne and Leipzig. This gives the lie to the impression always given by the UK aviation industry that airports in Europe will continue to expand. They will not do so without immense and powerful opposition.    Click here to view full story…



Wikipedia says, on the runway issue:

Third runway

A third runway would increase the number schedulable aircraft movements per hour from 90 to 120.[10] It would run in parallel to the existing runways and be located to the northeast of the current north runway, significantly extending the total area occupied by the airport.

According to Flughafen München GmbH (FMG), the airport’s operator, the current two-runway system is already operating at full capacity during peak hours, and requests for additional slots from airlines have been denied. Further increase in air traffic is expected as Munich is to become a second major hub in Germany after Frankfurt.

In August 2007, the airport operator applied for a planning permission from the government of Upper Bavaria. As more than 60,000 objections have been filed during public display of the plans, the procedures are expected not to conclude before 2011.

While according to ICAO Regulations (Annex XIV) the new runway would have to be named 08L/26R (renaming the existing north runway to 08C/26C), it is currently assigned the working title 09/27 in all plans.[11]


Munich Airport.

Facts and Figures, from the airport



Passengers  201034,721,605
Passenger change 09-10increase6.2%
Aircraft Movements389,939
Movements change 09-10decrease1.7%
Sources: Passenger Traffic, ADV[1]


Aircraft Noise demos from Frankfurt to Berlin. Thousands of German noise opponents protest in several cities

February 4, 2012

Protests at the airport in Frankfurt am Main.  Source: Reuters

There have been major protests at several German airports today, against aircraft noise, with whistles, drums and banners. There were about 20,000 protestors at Frankfurt protesting against noise from the new runway that opened in October. This was the largest protest at the airport since the opening . The police estimated the number of participants to 7,700, the organizers – a coalition of citizens’ groups against the airport expansion – spoke of 20,000 people. There were also demonstrations at Berlin, Leipzig, Munich and Dusseldorf.    Click here to view full story…



Munich airport’s third runway gets district go-ahead


(Reuters) – A German district government ruled on Tuesday that Munich airport can add a third runway, a move which will expand passenger capacity at the Lufthansa hub.

The district of Upper Bavaria said estimates of future traffic growth showed the additional runway was necessary, though it would only allow operations between 6 a.m and 10 p.m. to cut noise pollution at night.

In addition, the owners of about 100 houses near the airport would have the right to sell their properties to the airport’s operator for the market value they had in 2007.

Munich is home to Germany’s second-biggest airport after Frankfurt, with annual passenger numbers of about 35 million.

According to Munich airport, about 90 percent of long-haul flights to and from Germany pass through Frankfurt and Munich.

Lufthansa and German airlines association BDF said they welcomed the decision.



Third Munich Airport runway wins key ruling

By Cathy Buyck | August 5, 2011 (ATW)

Munich Airport received planning approval in late July from the regional Bavarian government for the construction of a third runway, which will allow it to handle up to 120 movements per hour, up from the current 90. The planning permission does come with restrictions, e.g. operations are allowed only between 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. to cut noise pollution at night. The new runway will be 4000 m. (13,100 ft.) long and 60 m. wide. It will be located 1,180 m. north of the current runway 08L/26R, with its thresholds displaced 2,100 m. to the east.

FMG, the operating company that manages MUC, began planning a third runway six years ago. The ruling by the local government is decisive and permits the immediate start of constrution work. However, FMG said it expects a legal challenge to the ruling and therefore it “plans to start construction only after a court decision.” It added that against “this backdrop we are aiming to put the new runway into operation as of 2015.”

FMG has three shareholders: the regional state of Bavaria (51%), the federal republic of Germany (26%) and the city of Munich (23%).

Besides a third runway, FMG is also planning a new terminal satellite facility at MUC to expand the passenger handling capacity of Terminal 2 and increase the number of gate positions for aircraft from 27 to 52. The satellite facility, which is designed to be built on top of the existing baggage sorting hall on the eastern apron, is scheduled to go into operation in 2015. It will increase the annual passenger capacity of MUC by 11 million to more than 50 million. The new satellite building will be financed jointly with Lufthansa, the airport’s largest user.

MUC is LH’s second largest hub after Frankfurt. It handled34.7 million passengers and some 390,000 flights in 2010, maintaining its number seven ranking among Europe’s top ten airports.  Itrecorded a 13% year-over-year increase in passenger throughput in the 2011 first half to just under 18 million. “This is the highest number in the history of Munich Airport. We have never before counted this many passengers in the first half of the year,” said CEO Michael Kerkloh. The number of takeoffs and landings increased more than 9% to a new record of 202,000.