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Heathrow runway would increase Scotland’s aviation CO2 by more flights Heathrow to Scotland
If Heathrow got a 3rd runway, it is very likely to increase the amount of carbon produced by more flights from Edinburgh and Glasgow, to Heathrow. The extra flights and destinations at Heathrow would entice more Scottish people to fly south, to make the connections. It is estimated this might be an extra 5,000 flights per year (ie. about 14 more per day), with several hundred thousand extra tonnes of CO2. If travellers from Scotland, wanting to fly from Heathrow, took the train, there would be less carbon emitted. Increasing flying, whether from Scottish airports, or from Heathrow, is entirely at odds with Scotland’s aim of cutting carbon emissions and becoming a net-zero country by 2045, which is 5 years earlier than the current (inadequate) UK target of 2050. Colin Howden, director of the sustainable transport alliance, Transform Scotland, said the Scottish government’s plans to cut a tiny bit of aviation carbon by looking at electric planes for some short trips in the Highlands and islands, would be entirely eclipsed by the increase in flights to Heathrow.
Edinburgh Airport flight path plan rejected by CAA, as it was not the same as in the consultation
A deeply unpopular plan to change a flight path at Edinburgh Airport has been rejected by the CAA. The proposed changes would have seen aircraft flying to the west of Cramond and along the Firth of Forth. The CAA said it could not approve the proposal due to “significant” differences between the final plan and the version developed in consultation with local communities. Had the correct information been in the consultation, it could have made people respond differently to the questions asked. It was the second set of plans submitted to the CAA after the industry regulator told Edinburgh Airport to do more work on the original proposal. Helena Paul, of Edinburgh Airport Watch, said: “On behalf of communities affected by these damaging proposals we are highly relieved the CAA have looked carefully and agreed the process was fatally flawed and could not be allowed to stand. Our hope now is the regulator does not allow Edinburgh Airport to continue using an outdated set of rules for any future consultations and instead enforces the new set of rules brought in for any consultations on new flight paths.” Further consultation would be necessary. The airport said modernising the airspace was necessary for growth.
Edinburgh Airport is set to press on with introducing a new controversial flight path route, despite widespread public objection.
Edinburgh Airport is set to press on with introducing a new controversial flight path route, despite widespread public objection. The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) put the airport’s initial submission on pause in September last year and asked bosses to review part of the design. A fresh proposal has now been resubmitted to the CAA, with aircraft to fly towards the west of Cramond and along the Firth of Forth under the plan. The airport carried out a consultation on the changes to its initial proposal between May and June, with 89% of the 1,167 participating against the flight path. Airport chiefs say the route will allow the airport to be more flexible with flights while building increased capacity for future growth. Campaigners argue the airport has failed to consider other viable flight path alternatives, as well as the impact the new route will have on the environment and residents’ wellbeing. Helena Paul, from Edinburgh Airport Watch, has urged the CAA to reject the new proposals, insisting the airport needs to scrap the plans and start again, taking proper account of the responses to the consultation by people who will be seriously negatively affected.
Edinburgh airport overtakes Heathrow on number of domestic air passengers, though numbers falling overall for both
Heathrow has been trying to curry favour with regional airports, implying that they will get links to Heathrow if there is a 3rd runway. The reality is that many domestic flights are not profitable, and can only be maintained if subsidised by the industry or by government. Now figures show that Heathrow no longer has the largest number of domestic air passengers, having fallen behind Edinburgh. In the past 12 years the number of passengers on domestic flights, to or from Heathrow, has fallen by 28% – while overall passenger numbers rose by 26% (Heathrow and the airlines prefer to use the slots for more profitable flights). In 2017 it handled just over 13,000 domestic passengers per day, compared with over 18,000 in 2005. It now subsidises domestic passengers by £15 per trip. There has been a fall in domestic passengers using Edinburgh too, but only of 14% – so it has overtaken Heathrow. Eight domestic airports are currently served from Heathrow. The only route to have been lost since 2005 is Durham Tees Valley, though frequency has dropped on many routes. Edinburgh airport says with its 12 direct long haul destinations, more passengers can avoid having to travel via Heathrow. Edinburgh airport (owned by GIP) is opposed to a Heathrow 3rd runway.
Gordon Dewar (CEO of Edinburgh airport): MSPs mistaken to back Heathrow ‘monopoly’ that harms Scottish airports
Gordon Dewar (CEO of Edinburgh airport, with same owners – GIP – as Gatwick, so not a fan of Heathrow expansion) says the Scottish Government made a mistake when it supported Heathrow’s third runway, which will create a “huge monopoly” in the South East and undermine Scotland’s airports. He says while Heathrow is spending a lot of time and money trying to get Scottish backing for its 3rd runway, the reality is that allowing Heathrow to become bigger would be “to the detriment of Scotland’s airports and Scottish travellers, and those around the UK for that matter.” He says while – in order to secure the Scottish Government’s support – Heathrow’s CEO John Holland-Kaye made a number of promises “about the appointment of Scottish suppliers and the use of Prestwick Airport as a logistics hub. He also promised 16,000 jobs, £200m of construction spend and £10m of cash to support route development in and out of Scotland.” ….Dewar says those backing Heathrow’s runway should “ask how those promises are being delivered and what safeguards are in place to ensure that they are.” (None?)
CAA rejects Edinburgh Airport’s application for flight path change due to “Technical and Coordination” issues
Edinburgh airport’s planned new flight path has been put on hold after the CAA announced it was halting the process. The CAA’s decision – which is very unusual – is understood to relate to technical aspects of the proposal, as well as a delay in receiving elements of the submission. It is not yet clear what this means for local communities that are affected by the airport and its noise, but the CAA decision is welcomed by local noise campaigners. This was the first Airspace Change proposal, by Edinburgh airport, which anticipates many more. Local group, Edinburgh Airport Watch (EAW) said that during the 2 year consultation process, multiple flaws and errors by the airport were identified at every stage. It remains to be seen whether the CAA will require a new application by Edinburgh airport to be determined under the CAA’s new rules for Airspace Change, rather than the old ones. Many people under newly concentrated flight paths have been experiencing much worse plane noise, in the past few years. EAW says the airport now has fewer aircraft movements than 10 years ago, and new routes are not needed. They want the airport to “learn from their past mistakes, and start a proper, meaningful and respectful dialogue with Communities that leads to substantial improvements.”
Edinburgh Airport flight path plans altered slightly after public consultation with negative responses
Edinburgh Airport said it has modified its proposals for changes to its flight paths following its latest public consultation. It has submitted these revised airspace change proposals to the CAA. Residents living under the new routes said they were concerned about increased aircraft noise and the impact on their communities. Campaign group Edinburgh Airport Watch said: “We call on the airport to halt this flawed process now. The CAA must scrutinise this application very carefully, and understand that there is no community support for these changes….We call on our government to intervene and ask serious questions about whose interests are being served by such radical proposals for change to flight paths that will have life-altering consequences for the health and wellbeing of hundreds of thousands of people across east central Scotland.” The airport said it would only use any new routes when “they are required, and that we should explain very clearly when that is and why”. It said it had also restricted the routes to peak hours. Campaigners said the airport had only published “vague information” about the changed plans. The airport’s CEO said they will do a phased approach, and the new routes will help the airport handle more planes during the short peak periods. The airport is not busy enough at other times to need them. There have been two public consultations held into the proposals.
Edinburgh airport unveils plan for major new home and business complex
Edinburgh Airport has unveiled plans for a massive (over 100 acres) business, industrial and housing complex to be built on part of the airport. They are describing it as “one of the best-connected developments in Scotland.” The buildings would extend from south-east of the passenger terminal to nearly as far as the Gogar roundabout. Chief executive Gordon Dewar said an adjacent development area south of the airport which had sought to attract major companies had failed to get off the ground because of the lack of such key infrastructure. He agreed the airport’s plans would provide “a degree of competition” with the proposed International Business Gateway scheme, where he said “nothing has happened” for years. The site will occupy much of the crosswind runway, which the airport said was rarely used. It runs south-east to north-west and cannot be used at the same time as the adjacent main south-west to north-east runway. However, the crosswind runway is used during runway maintenance and resurfacing. Mr Dewar admitted: “It will make it harder to avoid disruption, but we believe we have solutions that will address it.” Land for a planned 2nd runway, which the airport hopes would be needed around 2050, has already been reserved to the north of and parallel with the main runway.
MSP motion lodged at Holyrood about Edinburgh Airport flawed flight path consultation
Neil Findlay MSP (Labour Party) is a firm opponent of the changes to flight paths, overflying many areas that were previously unaffected, that Edinburgh airport is planning. He has lodged a motion at Holyrood about the airport’s current consultation on airspace change. It the motion gets sufficient support from MSPs across at least 3 political parties, it becomes eligible to be debated in the Chamber. Neil Findlay was able to lead a previous members’ debate in September 2015 which led to the scrapping of the airport’s TUTUR flight path trial. Neil has now put down a motion in the Scottish Parliament (Motion S5M-04708) saying: “That the Parliament notes what it sees as the growing concerns about Edinburgh Airport’s plan to introduce new flight paths; and asking “Edinburgh Airport scraps what is considered this flawed consultation and begins the process again with up-to-date information and a more robust and credible consultation process.” People in Scotland are encouraged, by Edinburgh Airport Watch, to contact their MSP by email to ask them to sign his motion. The consultation by Edinburgh airport is inadequate, contains incorrect information, and is based on faulty data. But the altered routes would inflict noise on new areas, and for huge numbers of those sensitive to noise, have life changing consequences.
Edinburgh airport flawed and inaccessible consultation on airspace changes condemned by opponents
On 2nd February, Edinburgh Airport launched its second consultation, which closes on 30th April, on its airspace change programme. The consultation is very hard for a layperson to understand, with voluminous documents. The aim is to make more “efficient” use of airspace – ie. fit in more planes, especially at the few times of day when Edinburgh airport is particularly busy, like early morning. People are asked to comment on various route options, many of which mean new areas overflown, and some areas newly intensely overflown, under narrow PBN routes. Hundreds of local people, who will be badly affected by some of the proposed changes, have attended packed public meetings. The local group Edinburgh Airport Watch (EAW) are very worried about the lack of justification for the plans. There are no projected numbers on flights, types of planes, the times of day that planes may fly. EAW say the noise shadows created by the proposed flight paths will be enormous, and will affect hundreds of thousands of people, many of whom will not have been exposed to aircraft noise before. Areas excluded from the initial stage consultation were excluded from the published swathes, told they would not be affected and now find flight paths directly over them. Not surprisingly, they are furious. Neil Findlay MSP has lodged a motion in the Scottish Parliament, asking that the consultation be re-done, with proper information.
Flybe starts flights from Edinburgh and Aberdeen to Heathrow from March 2017
New regular flights from Aberdeen and Edinburgh to Heathrow, starting on 26th March 2017, have been announced by Flybe. These will be Flybe’s first flights to Heathrow. There will be 4 flights from Edinburgh on weekdays, and 3 from Aberdeen, making a total of 40 weekly flights per week. They will be using slots made available to Flybe at the insistence of the European Commission, after the takeover of BMI. Airlines hope to get Scottish passengers to link into long haul flights from Heathrow, with all the usual claims about economic benefits etc. Simon Calder says Flybe will inherit the dormant Heathrow slots and will challenge British Airways on the Edinburgh and Aberdeen routes. The fares may fall due to the competition. But the BA flights will be faster. The air fares could be around £85 to £130 for a return ticket.
Edinburgh airport produces summary of airspace change consultation responses – majority negative
Edinburgh airport’s initial findings into the letsgofurther consultation (on airspace change to create new flight paths across a wide swathe of East Central Scotland) are out. There was an overwhelming rejection of their plans to change flight paths. They are refusing to publish the comments in full. Local campaign, Edinburgh Airport Watch comments: “While it is unclear what criteria the airport has used to categorise the responses as Positive, Neutral or Negative, it is obvious from the airport’s own reckoning that the majority of responders were against the proposals to change the airspace. The initial consultation documents contained little detail, yet people across the piece have given an emphatic thumbs down to any further change to the airspace with 70% of Community Councils commenting negatively.” … Since the airport’s disastrous TUTUR trial in 2015, hundreds of thousands of people have woken up to find themselves suddenly and without warning living under a busy and disruptive flight path – with no consultation. … “We are struck by the number of comments from people clearly stating the importance to them of tranquility.” …”Before embarking on any more proposals for further change, we call on the airport to reverse the changes it has already made to the airspace since 2015 and enter into a proper dialog with those Communities whose lives have been turned upside down by their actions so far.”
Edinburgh consultation on flight paths turns into omni-shambles as airport loses vital consultation data
Edinburgh Airport Watch, and many others, were shocked to learn that the integrity and accuracy of the airport’s consultation process has been jeopardised by a computer upgrade. The airport has admitted that they lost 199 responses made over the last week. The data submitted between 10.31am on Monday, 29 August and 12.05pm on Friday, 2 September was accidentally not saved between these dates and times during a planned upgrade of the site. The airport has apologised for the inconvenience to those who now have to re-submit their response, and the consultation has been extended by a week (from the earlier end date of 12th September to 19th September) to give people the chance to submit again. The airport has 21 of the email addresses (out of the 199) lost submissions, so can inform those people. Local group, Edinburgh Airport Watch commented that trust in the airport had already hit rock bottom, and this latest blunder (even if not directly the airport’s fault) only serves to further damage Edinburgh Airport’s seriously tattered reputation among communities, especially in its consultation process. The group also have concerns about the area being consulted, with a huge number of people not being affected by the airport’s flight paths. A large public meeting was held on 6th September.
Edinburgh Airport Consultation on Flight Paths – public meeting on 6th September
Edinburgh Airport is currently consulting (ends 12th September) on changes to their flight paths. These changes affect a wide swathe around the airport, and are likely to impact on about 300,000 people across West Lothian, Falkirk and Fife areas, many in communities that have not been affected by aircraft noise previously. The local community group, Edinburgh Airport Watch, has organised a public meeting on 6th September, for people to understand the issues and what is at stake. It is to be chaired by Neil Findlay MSP. Edinburgh airport’s website has some more information, but there are few details on what is actually being proposed. There is insufficient detail of routes and how intensively they will be used, or over what times of day (or night). Many local communities are very concerned about changes that have already happened, and those that may happen in future, in terms of changes routes and concentration of routes. Some previously quiet areas that had no overhead flights, or few, now have very noticeably more. The airport wants to put in more flights at peak times, and that is a key driver of the changes. In 2015 the airport was forced to abandon a trial of a new westerly take-off (TURUR) route due to huge and widespread opposition. This route now cannot be used again without a full public consultation.
Edinburgh airport starts 1st stage of consultation to get more RNAV routes in place by summer 2018
Edinburgh airport met strenuous opposition when it ran a trial that started in June 2015 of the TUTUR route. Now Edinburgh has put out a consultation (ends 12th September) of the first phase of a process of getting more airspace changes. The consultation is not on actual routes. The airport says: “The positions of the new routes have not yet been determined. We seek to inform the decisions regarding where best to position these routes by consulting with those impacted or who have an interest.” The question in the consultation is “what local factors should be taken into account when determining the position of the route within the design envelope given the potential impacts, and why?” They say feedback “will inform the detailed design process and will influence the design options.” Once draft routes have been designed, a further consultation (probably summer 2017) will take place on the detailed design of the routes. After the second consultation, Edinburgh Airport will submit an airspace change proposal to the CAA. They have been careful to get their consultation in quickly, before the CAA system of improving the airspace change process comes into being. ” The target date for the RNAV routes to come into operation is Summer 2018.” Consultees cannot comment on air traffic growth, airport expansion, or government policy on airspace noise (or the lack of it), or of PBN or the desirability of RNAV.
Edinburgh campaign, SEAT, shows why cutting Scottish APD risks harming people’s health and the environment
The community campaign, SEAT (Stop Edinburgh Airspace Trial) has set out why it is opposed to the Scottish Government intention to cut APD by 50%. Edinburgh airport is delighted that APD might be reduced, so increasing demand for more flights (= more profit). But those badly affected by aircraft noise are very concerned about the increase in the problems they suffer. Air Passenger Duty is needed, to at least partly make up for the tax breaks the aviation industry benefits from by paying no VAT, and no fuel duty. There is no VAT on purchase or servicing of aircraft. Many airports are owned by off-shore corporations, that pay minimal (or no) UK company taxed. Flying is already artificially cheap, and even cheaper, if the only tax is halved. While the Scottish government supports high speed rail links to London, which would cut carbon emissions if rail is used instead of air, they also aim to increase the number of flights, by cutting APD. That means significantly higher Scottish CO2 emissions. SEAT speaks up for people negatively impacted by aviation. The impacts on health from plane noise are now well known, and they are a cost to society. SEAT says cutting APD is unwise, and means putting profit for big business before people’s health, or the environment.
Campaigners vow to fight new Edinburgh Airport flight path plans “all the way”
The campaign group, Stop Edinburgh Airspace Trial (SEAT) against plans for a new Edinburgh flight path has vowed to “fight it all the way”. A report was published by Edinburgh Airport recently, with findings from last year’s TUTUR trial. The aim of the trial was to get planes departing every minute at peak times instead of every two minutes.That would make more money for the airport. SEAT say noise during the trial caused “misery” but the airport declared it was a technical success. The trial was stopped after 4 months, 2 months early, on 28th October, after nearly 8,000 complaints from 567 individuals. The airport said 57% of the complaints were not about trial flights but were about aircraft operating on flight paths that have existed for a long time – as there were some changes to these. Edinburgh says no decision will be made on the new flight path’s future until the end of 2016, but of course, the airport wants to keep the maximum number of flights it can handle per hour, especially at peak times – regardless of annoyance to those overflown. Helena Paul, from SEAT, said the report seriously underestimated the volume of complaints and the sense of outrage people felt. It was grossly unfair to impose noise levels of over 80 decibels on people who bought their homes far from any flight paths.
Edinburgh airport declares its (fiercely opposed) TUTUR flight path trial a “technical success”
Edinburgh Airport, owned by GIP, ran the deeply unpopular flight TUTUR path trial in mid 2015. The aim was to get aircraft off the tarmac every minute at peak times – such as early morning – rather than every two minutes as is currently the case. And that would help increase the value of the airport, for GIP. Due to intense opposition and thousands of complaints about noise, it was ended two months early. Scottish journalist, Gina Davidson, has written about the problems. Edinburgh airport says it wants to be a good neighbour, but dismissed the mass of complaints about TUTUR as being from a ‘relatively small number of people, living in pockets of West Lothian.’ Unsurprising the airport announced this week that the trial had been a “technical success”.For overflown communities, such as Broxburn, Uphall, Linlithgow, and Blackness, it was not a success. And many of them are sure that even now, planes have not reverted to the old routes – but are still over-flying their homes. Edinburgh airport knows it will have a battle on its hands should it decide to attempt to make the TUTUR route permanent. There is now also a petition about noise in Cramond and Barnton, which are also facing more take-offs over them, in some wind conditions. Opposition is getting organised.
People living with Edinburgh airport plane noise adamant that changes to routes persist
The new campaign group, Stop Edinburgh Airspace Trial (SEAT), was set up last year in response to the suddenly increased noise from the TUTUR trial that started in June 2015 over some areas. They say Edinburgh Airport is planning to impose a “new airspace regime” on the area surrounding it – effectively a secret flight path. The purpose of TUTUR was to see if the airport could increase capacity by cutting the departure interval between flights from two minutes to one. However, people living beneath it have attacked the airport’s lack of transparency. Helena Paul, from SEAT said Edinburgh Airport failed to adequately communicate about the TUTUR experiment with communities.” She also said there were concerns that data from airport-positioned noise monitors would “not adequately reflect the disturbance on the ground”. The trial was stopped 2 months early after nearly 8,000 complaints. Yet SEAT members say they are still hearing about new problems with noise being experience by residents across West Lothian and into Fife. There are complaints that planes are more frequent, lower and louder. But the airport says: “Aircraft have been flying in and out of Edinburgh Airport on the same routes for 40 years; they are not flying any lower or louder than they did in the past.” This a now familiar pattern – residents and airports not agreeing. The airport will publicise the results of the trial later this month.
Linlithgow MSP sends her own 42-page report on impact of Edinburgh flight path trial to CAA
The “Tutur” flight path trial at Edinburgh airport created a storm of protest, from those finding themselves under a new, narrow flight path for the first time. The trial had to be stopped two months early, in October, because of the opposition. Now Fiona Hyslop, the MSP for Linlithgow, which was partly overflown in the trial, has herself surveyed 2,000 residents in West Lothian to find out their views. She has sent her 42-page report to the CAA. Ms Hyslop said the reason for her report was that residents had been kept in the dark about the potential for a new Edinburgh flight path and although the CAA “will receive a report from Edinburgh Airport stating that the complaints they received have originated from a small number of residents who have repeatedly complained, Edinburgh Airport did not proactively contact each individual resident as I have.” Of the 2,000 surveyed, she found that 1,220 respondents felt that noise created by planes overhead was intrusive or disturbing while they were in their house with the windows shut. 760 of those surveyed found that there had been either no change, that the noise was barely noticeable or that it was tolerable. In two areas, the number saying they had been adversely affected were 71% and 60%. These results give a much fuller picture of the noise impact than “simply stating the results from two temporary noise monitors as Edinburgh Airport propose to do.”
Edinburgh TUTUR flight path trial ended 2 months early – but residents say changes persist
In June Edinburgh airport started a trial of a new, concentrated take off flight path (TUTUR), designed to enable the airport to deal with more planes per hour, and therefore make more money and raise the airport’s value. Due to the utter noise misery the trial produced and the huge volume of complaints, it was ended two months early – on 28th October, not 24th December. However, as has been the pattern at other airports, people overflown say the route has not returned to how it was before the trial. Campaigner Helena Paul from local group SEAT (Stop Edinburgh Airport Trial) said: “Despite assurances that the TUTUR trial has ended, the noise disturbance has not stopped. In fact, many residents are reporting a serious increase in the levels of noise from flights compared to before the trial started. … It’s perfectly clear to many thousands of us that there’s been a significant change in the pattern of use of the skies above our heads, to the severe detriment of many communities living beneath.” Helena has asked for data gathered during the trail period to be released, so that questions can be answered. They want to show definitively and precisely what happened pre-trial, and what is happening now.
Heathrow slots that should be ‘ring fenced’ for Scottish flights redeployed for leisure routes to Spain, Italy & France
Simon Calder reports that precious landing slots at Heathrow that had been “ring fenced” for Scottish routes are being redeployed by British Airways to open new routes to Spain, Italy and France – leaving Scotland with one million fewer seats a year. When BA bought BMI, it was forced to hand 9 daily slot pairs specifically for use on routes connecting Heathrow with Edinburgh and Aberdeen. The so-called “remedy slots” had been used by BMI to operate flights from Heathrow to Scotland, and were taken up by Virgin Atlantic, which ran them for 2 years as “Little Red”. But last month Virgin scrapped Little Red. Therefore the slots revert to BA, which is using them to launch routes to Menorca, Biarritz and Palermo (starting next spring) – as opposed to the “emerging markets” in Asia, Africa and Latin America that are often cited in support of a 3rd runway at Heathrow. There will also be increases in the number of departures to long-established destinations such as Berlin, Stockholm and Venice. ie more holiday destinations. If another contender were to come forward for the “remedy slots”, BA would be obliged to hand them over. It is difficult to see, though, an airline that could make a success where Virgin Atlantic failed.
Edinburgh trial (no prior consultation) of new narrow route to be ended 2 months early, due to opposition
Edinburgh Airport is to halt its controversial trial of a new flight path two months early (28th October). The trial of the concentrated route resulted in unacceptable levels of noise for those below the new route. The airport’s Chief executive Gordon Dewar admitted the airport had been overwhelmed with complaints about the trial route over areas which were not previously over flown. He said a letter from Transport Minister, Derek Mackay, asking if the trial could be shortened had also influenced the decision. The announcement was made at a packed public meeting in Broxburn. Like all other new routes that have been introduced through the CAA, there was no consultation. Mr Dewar said on the consultation: “…I do apologise. We have learned a lesson on that one.” The CAA has been taken aback by the extent of opposition to every new concentrated flight path it has introduced, and appears unable to work out how to implement the European SESAR changes to airspace on an articulate and determined population, against their will. Someone at the meeting commented that Gordon Dewar’s presentation was met with silence from the audience. But a short video by Sally Pavey, an experienced noise campaigner from Gatwick, received enthusiastic applause. Campaigners from affected airports are linking up to oppose unsuitable airspace changes.
Scottish MSPs call for the Edinburgh flight path trial, that is reducing people to tears, to be ended early
Edinburgh Airport started a trial of a new flight path in June, due to continue till 24th December. The purpose of the route is to enable the airport to have take-offs every minute, rather than every two minutes. It has resulted in a narrow, concentrated flight path over areas that did not have much plane noise before, and this has caused real distress. People are especially infuriated because the CAA allows NATS to run trials with no consultation of the public. This consultation is currently only needed once the trial has been done (and it pretty much a fait accompli). Campaigners of SEAT (Stop Edinburgh Airspace Trial) launched a petition against the trial and have won the support of cross-party Lothian MSPs, including Labour’s Neil Findlay who yesterday led the debate. Four MSPs spoke up in a debate at Hollyrood, saying it is not acceptable that people now badly affected by noise were not consulted, and they want the trial ended early. Alison Johnstone (Green Party Scotland) said the relentless noise, often from 5am all day through till midnight, had reduced people to tears due to stress and sleep deprivation. She added, re. the CAA: “Just because you don’t have to consult, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t.”
Edinburgh Airport’s new TUTUR flight path trial started 25th June – maybe for 6 months
The trial of a new flight path to the west of Edinburgh airport started on 25th June. The airport itself does not say how long the trial with last, but reports say either 5 months or 6 months. The trial sees southbound planes take off over Broxburn and Uphall before turning east over the Forth, then south over East Lothian. The aim of the trial is to speed up departures, increase the number of planes than can be handles, and make more money for airlines and the airport. Edinburgh airport says if the trial is a “success,” [a success may mean if the level of opposition is low enough, or can be discounted] it could cut the minimum interval between take-offs from two minutes to one minute, doubling the potential number of flights by large planes from the airport. That could mean increasing the total number of flights by 20% to around 120,000 per year. People finding themselves under the new, narrow, route are experiencing much worse plane noise than before – especially as much of the new flight path is on a turn. People are encouraged to contact the airport and make complaints, if the are not happy with the new situation. Edinburgh airport says: “If the trial is successful it will continue for a bit longer” (ie. no end date?) going through the formal Airspace Change Process by the CAA. Once that is done, the route will be permanent – after a public consultation and the statutory change process.
Edinburgh Airport unveils 5 month trial of flight path to boost the airport’s capacity
Edinburgh Airport has unveiled details of a 5-month trial of a new flight path for aircraft taking off to the west, in a bid to increase capacity. The Airspace Trial, which will begin on 25 June, will introduce a new SID route, the purpose of which is to allow more flights to use the runway, and allow aircraft to take off at one-minute intervals. This is to “allow the airport to maintain safe and sustainable growth without affecting punctuality.” Most of the time the flights take off to the west and there are currently 3 SID routes – known as Grice (which goes north), Gosam (which goes south west) and Talla (south). The new route – Tutur – will see aircraft take off in a south westerly direction and turn right towards the River Forth, passing over West Lothian and to the east of Linlithgow. The settlements worse affected, with planes at 1900 – 2000 feet, would be Uphall and Dechmont. Map Aircraft will climb as they turn, to fly over the coast and down the Firth of Forth passing North Queensferry, and then fly back over land at approximately 13,000ft near Musselburgh. The airport says the aircraft using the trial route are likely to be their least noisy (B737s, A319, A320, A321, 787 and A330s). The airport says the trial would monitor the impact on local communities, and noise monitors would be placed along the flight path to collect data on the flights.
Edinburgh Airport set for next £50m expansion stage
The first stage included a new security hall and a temporary arrivals hall to accommodate Middle East routes. During a visit by the prime minister, it was announced that a new immigration and baggage hall is to be built, which should triple the capacity for larger long-haul aircraft. Of the £150m programme announced in 2013, £25m was been spent on stage one, for a new security hall, land-side improvements and a temporary arrivals/immigration/baggage hall. Work on that temporary structure started this week, to be ready for the June start to the Etihad service. The £50m phase two investment will build around that temporary structure. That leaves £75m to spend over the five-year programme. It is not yet known how that will be spent. The CEO said: “The work we’ll be carrying out over the next four years will transform our air-side facilities, tripling our capacity to handle bigger aircraft and paving the way for the next 10 years of increased international connectivity.”
Full BBC article at http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-edinburgh-east-fife-30933854
Flybe suspends Inverness-London service – more flights between Edinburgh and London City Airport instead
Direct Edinburgh to Philadelphia flight launched – Ryder Cup is 23rd to 28th September, and “Homecoming” is on 24th September
United Airlines launches new Edinburgh to Chicago link
The first direct flight service between Edinburgh and Chicago has been launched by United Airlines.It will operate five times weekly until 12 June, daily from 13 June to 2 September and four times weekly between 3 September and 6 October. The airport said it marked “a significant step” in achieving better connectivity between the Scottish capital and North America. This service will provide real benefits to Scotland’s economy, encouraging more tourism, trade and investment by reducing the need for travellers to make connecting flights via London or the continent. ie. this helps to take the pressure off the south east airports, meaning the alleged case for a new runway is weakened. There is a huge amount of spare runway capacity at all regional airports, which should be used – rather than all flights being from the south east. That helps balance the economy, and reduce the north-south divide.
Qatar Airways new service between Edinburgh and Doha – and others – avoiding need for connecting flights
November 22, 2013 A new non-stop flight between Edinburgh Airport and Doha in Qatar is to be launched next year. It will be operated x5 per week by Qatar Airways, which serves more than 100 international destinations from Doha. The 787 Dreamliner aircraft will fly all year round on the route, providing connections to Australian hubs in Perth and Melbourne. It will be the Dreamliner’s first scheduled service from Scotland. Officials at Edinburgh Airport have long wanted to attract a major Middle Eastern carrier to allow them to compete with Glasgow, which provides a twice daily Emirates service to Dubai. There will also be a US Airways route linking Edinburgh with Philadelphia. Scotland’s Transport Minister Keith Brown hailed the move as “excellent news” for the aviation sector and said the new route was “yet more evidence of the strong bonds we are building with Qatar. The direct flights remove the need to use Heathrow for hub connections. In 2014 Scotland has the Commonwealth Games, and the Ryder Cup and wants to get in more visitors to these, as well as other business and tourists. Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh Airport changes hands to Global Infrastructure Partners
June 1, 2012 GIP has now taken ownership of Edinburgh Airport. GIP also own Gatwick and London City aiports. It was bought for £805 million. The airport’s current managing director, Jim O’Sullivan, has agreed to continue in his role until Gordon Dewar arrives, to be Chief Executive. Sir John Elvidge has become chairman of Edinburgh airport. GIP has improved efficiency at Gatwick airport, and there is expectation that they will do the same at Edinburgh. Click here to view full story…
Drop in Edinburgh airport passengers amid issues with Ryanair and bmibaby
May 13, 2012 Passenger numbers at Edinburgh Airport have fallen amid a running dispute with Ryanair and uncertainty over the future of BMI. Terminal traffic for the first 4 months of 2012 are down 2% compared to the same period last year. The airport is fighting Ryanair on terms of a deal on landing charges, and because of that, Ryanair has scrapped 13 routes. It will probably cut more. Bmibaby, which hosts many regional flights around the UK, is set to close in September, with some routes being axed from next month. Edinburgh was recently sold to Global Infrastructure Partners for £807.2 million. Edinburgh saw record traffic of 9.4 million in 2011. Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh Airport sold to Global Infrastructure Partnership for £807m
April 23, 2012 A deal has been struck to sell Edinburgh Airport to the owner of Gatwick and London City airports for £807m. GIP has beaten a consortium led by another infrastructure investor, JP Morgan Asset Management. The sale price, slightly more than expected, is payable in full at closing of the deal, expected in May. It is thought that GIP intends to improve the speed at which passengers move through the airport at check-in, security and baggage handling, and to link the airport with new routes. Its investment pattern is to sell the asset on after about 7 years. GIP is said to have improved the passenger experience at Gatwick. Edinburgh airport handled 9.5m passengers last year, caters for about 40 airlines, serves more than 100 destinations and currently generates around £50m EBITDA annually. Click here to view full story…
GIP and 3i frontrunners to buy Edinburgh Airport
February 11, 2012 Global Infrastructure Partners (which owns Gatwick and London City Airport), 3i and a consortium backed by US private equity giant Carlyle Group are due to take an early lead in the race for Edinburgh Airport as the deadline for first-round bids expires this week. The airport is valued at £400m-£600m, and JP Morgan is also interested. Stagecoach boss Sir Brian Souter has ruled himself out of bidding in the first round, though may get involved later through his Souter Investments vehicle. Arcus Infrastructure Partners, owner of Forth Ports in Edinburgh, was named as another potential buyer but is also believed to have decided against. Bidders say the asset is attractive as it has been underdeveloped by BAA. Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh Airport sale attracts interest of JP Morgan
January 15, 2012 JP MORGAN, the US financial institution, is believed to be the latest to express an interest in bidding for Edinburgh airport. The bank is believed to be sounding out interested parties ahead of the deadline for offers in March. Potential bidders will submit bids in excess of £400 million. A preferred bidder will be selected by the summer. The growing list of those interested in buying Edinburgh 3i and the US-based Carlyle Group (included Sir Brian Souter) and GIP. Arcus European Infrastructure Fund may also table an offer. Also a consortium of Scottish businessmen. A price of £400 – 600 million is likely. Click here to view full story…
Souter in bid to buy Edinburgh airport
November 21, 2011 Sir Brian Souter, the founder of Stagecoach, is considering joining a consortium of Scottish investors to buy Edinburgh airport. The Scottish millionaire is thought to be drawing up plans after BAA appointed investment banks Citigroup and BNP Paribas to help sell the airport. The entrepreneur will not make any formal decisions until the sales document is sent out in January. Other parties interested in buying it are 3i; Aeroports de Paris, which owns Charles de Gaulle airport; and GIP. Click here to view full story…
BAA opts to sell Edinburgh airport for £500m and keep Glasgow
October 20, 2011 BAA is putting Edinburgh Airport up for sale with an estimated price tag of about £500m. They chose Edinburgh instead of Glasgow, as it would fetch a higher price, is performing better and would be easier to sell. Bidders include GIP (owns Gatwick), Manchester Airports Group, Borealis Infrastructure, and Macquarie. BAA is now starting sale preparations and expects to formally approach the market in the New Year in order to agreeing a sale by Summer 2012. Click here to view full story…
BAA ordered to sell Glasgow or Edinburgh airport before selling Stansted
October 8, 2011 BAA has been told by the Competition Commission that it must sell either Edinburgh or Glasgow before it sells Stansted. Earlier this year it had said BAA should sell Stansted first, but BAA appealed which has caused delay. So now the sale of one of the Scottish airports must be brought forward, and will begin soon, as it will take longer for Stansted to be sorted out. BAA says it is now clearer than ever “that Heathrow & Stansted serve different markets.” Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh Airport Chief Executive resigns after year in post – replaced by Jim O’Sullivan
3rd August 2011 Kevin Brown is starting a new job next month as chief executive officer at North Queensland Airport Group, which is based in Cairns. BAA said Mr Brown was leaving a “healthy airport” and that Jim O’Sullivan, who currently works at Heathrow, has been appointed to take over at the helm of Edinburgh Airport on 1 September. Mr O’Sullivan is currently BAA technical standards and assurance director. Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh Airport Master Plan released – barely changed from the draft
11th July 2011 The airport Master Plan goes up till 2040. They anticipate passenger numbers will grow from 9 million per annum now, to 12.3 million (central forecast) by 2020. (The central forecast in the 2006 Master Plan was 17.6 million by 2020). They anticipate 20.5 million passengers per year by 2040 (the central forecast in the 2006 Master Plan was 23 million by 2030). They expect 141,300 aircraft movements per year by 2020 and 200,600 per year by 2040. Cargo and mail might grow to 56,300 tonnes by 2020 and 81,900 tonnes per year by 2040. They do not anticipate “needing” a 2nd runway until 2040, but have plans to set aside land before 2040 for such a runway. Click here to view full story…
Scottish Government ‘colluded’ with BAA on Edinburgh airport £1 drop-off charge
14th February 2011 Edinburgh airport has a £1 drop off charge for passengers, and there is a bit of a local campaign to oppose this. Martin Ritchie, a senior policy officer at the Scottish Government Aviation Branch sat in on meetings with BAA executives, and said that a £1 fee was “too low”. Mr Ritchie advised BAA that the £1 charge was the “best way” to help tackle congestion.” £1 is too low a cost to effectively deter car journeys.
Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh Airport pulls back on expansion plans in its draft Master Plan
18th January 2011 Edinburgh airport has launched its draft Master Plan, with enormous growth forecasts, but slightly lower than previous estimates. BAA hopes passenger numbers will increase from 8.6 million in 2010 to 13 million by 2020 (it originally hoped by 2013) and to 20.5 million by 2040. And that air transport movements will grow from 100,592 in 2010 to 141,300 by 2020. BAA says no 2nd runway will be required, but it needs new aircraft hangars and stands. Click here to view full story…
Court of Appeal tells BAA to sell Stansted and a Scottish airport
13th October 2010 BAA has lost the latest round of a long-running legal saga with the competition authorities over its dominance of the UK’s airports. It will now be forced to sell Stansted, and either Edinburgh or Glasgow airports. BAA lost a hearing in the Court of Appeal brought by the Competition Commission. Earlier in the year BAA had argued that the Competition Appeals Tribunal ruling has been biased as one member of the committee had advised Manchester Airport’s pension fund. (Independent) Click here to view full story…
Drop in Scots airport passengers in July and further decline of Glasgow
David Lees new MD at Southampton airport, as Kevin Brown moves to Edinburgh
Edinburgh airport’s tree project is trampled by its carbon elephants
High Court Ruling on Heathrow 3rd runway throws expansion plans at Scottish airports into question
26th March 2010 Plans to expand Edinburgh, Glasgow and other Scottish airports were thrown into serious doubt today when a High Court Judge said that the Government’s 2003 aviation policy didn’t fully take into account the effects of climate change and the Climate Change Act 2008. The ruling means expansion plans at Heathrow and dozens of other airports around the country, including Scotland, need to be re-thought. The Aviation White Paper has to be be radically overhauled. Click here to view full story…
Flybe announce Edinburgh – Kent flights
Edinburgh to Oxford flights: Martin Halstead is back in the air
Oxford to gain Scottish air link to Edinburgh
Air travellers increasingly pick Edinburgh over Glasgow
December traffic figures: BAA’s airports
11th January 2010 Passengers at BAA’s 6 UK airports were down -0.8% on Dec 2008. Bad weather accounted for about 150,000 passengers. Heathrow was up +1.2% on Dec 2008. Stansted declined -2.6% in December, the “best” performance since March 2008. Glasgow was down -8.8%, Edinburgh down -4.4%, Aberdeen down -9.4%, Southampton down -5.9%. Cargo tonnage was up 20% on last year. For the 6 airports, for all of 2009, passengers were down -4.2% and cargo down -7.7% on 2008. Click here to view full story…
“Airport hungry to back healthy breakfast club” – BAA Edinburgh PR greenwash !
1st May 2009 EDINBURGH Airport has become the latest backer of a scheme to provide healthy breakfasts for schoolchildren in the Capital. BAA, is the fifth business to sign up to sponsor the breakfast club, which is run by investment firm AEGON. Click here to view full story…
Plane Stupid Scotland: four arrested over peaceful banner drop
21st March 2009 4 activists from Plane Stupid Scotland were arrested after a peaceful banner drop near Edinburgh airport. After dropping a banner reading ‘Airport expansion is stupid’ from the 4th story of a car park opposite the terminal building they were taken to a police station and charged with Breach of the Peace. They were to appear in court, but the case was thrown out before the court opened. (PS) Click here to view full story…
Scottish Airport expansion plans, and Plane Stupid Scotland
(Date Added: 2nd April 2008 ) The plans for the expansion of Edinburgh airport come at a pivotal time for Scotland and its development. Currently ALL major airports in Scotland have expansion plans, currently being included in the National Planning Framework. The forecasted expansion in Scottish air transport is set to rise from 14 million to 50 million passenger movements by 2030. (Plane Stupid – Scotland) Click here to view full story…
Edinburgh – Ryanair announces £70m expansion
Edinburgh – Demand for more action to cut airport noise
airport managers calling for grants to assist in noise insulation. Now airport
bosses have increased fines for planes breaking noise levels from £1000 to £2000.
But Bill Scholes, chairman of Cramond Community Council, said: “We’re very much
the worst affected here. “The fines are a step in the right direction, but £2000
is not much more than a slap on the wrist.” http://edinburghnews.scotsman.com/edinburgh.cfm?id=724542007
News stories about Edinburgh Airport can also be found on the UK Airport News website, at http://www.uk-airport-news.info/edinburgh-airport-news.htm