Heathrow Airspace and Future Operations Consultation

Consultation (closes 4th March 2019) details are here:

https://afo.heathrowconsultation.com/

EGAG have produced some suggestions for responding – a summary response and a fuller response.

Or pick up a printed copy with freepost envelope at Smiths in St Judes Road, Genevieve’s and The Village Centre in Victoria Street or The Happy Man public house in Harvest Road.

Heathrow are carrying out a consultation on new satellite navigation concentrated flight paths – flight paths similar to the trials of 2014.

IMPLICATIONS FOR ENGLEFIELD GREEN AREA:

  • Up to 67 planes an hour concentrated departure routes on westerlies (70% of time EG is on Westerly winds), i.e. an aircraft over Englefield Green every 53 seconds.
  • A reduction from existing 8-9 hours of respite to an average 4-5 hours respite with the 3rd runway.
  • Overflown for 17.5 hours a day.
  • 9 concentrated departure routes, similar to 2014 trials, over Englefield Green.
  • Up to 17 planes an hour concentrated departure routes on easterlies.
  • For the first time ever over Englefield Green, up to 25 planes an hour on new concentratedarrival routes in the early morning 06:00 – 07:00.

Have your say but don’t feel you must only choose their suggested options which tend to pit one community against another for any reprieve from noise. Feel free to keep stating your opposition to expansion – both to 25,000 more planes from two runways and to a minimum of 740,000 per year from 3 runways! You may also note in the consultations, Heathrow never mentions capping flights, it promises at least 260,000 more flights equivalent to at least 740,000 flights per year…. there doesn’t appear to be a limit set with expansion; analysis has shown that in the region of 900,000 flights can be accommodated with a 3rd runway – this could mean up to 82 flights per hour over Englefield Green, i.e. an aircraft every 43 seconds!!!!!

Health officials recommend 8 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night – World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends that to accommodate different people’s sleep patterns an airport should cease operations for a period of 10 hours – However, Heathrow’s expansion plans indicate our area would only get a maximum of 6 – 6.5 hours per night without aircraft noise from scheduled flights. Heathrow already generates 29% of all aircraft noise impacts in Europe (more noise than the next 8 noisiest EU airports combined) and pollution levels around the airport currently break EU laws. Should we really need to tolerate more health abuse? And why isn’t the Government protecting us?

If you are as horrified as we are by the prospect of more noisy, polluting aircraft then please make your views known.

DETAILS ON PROPOSED NEW FLIGHT PATHS AND THE IMPLICATIONS

Heathrow has revealed its design envelopes (intended flight path zones) that will cram even more flights into the airspace above our community. Despite such complex designs needing years to formulate, this information was not disclosed during any consultations before Parliament was asked to approve a 3rd runway. And it is now clear to see why.

The concentrated departure flight paths within the design envelopes below will be as low as 1000/1500ft with a 3rd runway, spewing out more pollution and far surpassing noise levels that violate WHO advice on healthy living.

Source: Heathrow Consultation/Heathrow’s Airspace Design Envelopes for Expansion showing Departure-4 with upto 50 flights per hour (every 72 seconds) at above 65dB* from the southern runway on westerly departures at the Air Forces Memorial, Englefield Green.

*WHO guidelines state that for average noise exposure, it strongly recommends reducing noise levels produced by aircraft below 45dB Lden (0700-2300), as aircraft noise above this level is associated with adverse health effects. For night noise exposure, it strongly recommends reducing noise levels produced by aircraft during the night time below 40dB Lnight (2300-0700), as aircraft noise above this level is associated with adverse effects on sleep.

Source: Heathrow Consultation/Heathrow’s Airspace Design Envelopes for Expansion showing Departure-7 with upto 17 flights per hour with 3 above 65dB from the new 3rd runway, on easterly departures, over the Air Forces Memorial, Englefield Green.

Source: Heathrow Consultation/Heathrow’s Airspace Design Envelopes for Expansion showing Departure-9 with upto 17 flights per hour at above 65dB from the southern runway on westerly departures over the Air Forces Memorial, Englefield Green.

And despite Heathrow claiming to need a new runway because it has reached its legal capacity limit, it wishes to introduce highly concentrated routes, using new satnav technology, to create ‘Independent Parallel Approaches’ (IPA) to add 25,000 MORE planes per year on its 2 existing runways. This would mean our area being exposed for the first time to arrivals as well as departures, as early as 2022. Critically this is something else not included in the airport’s application to Parliament for a third runway. There will be an IPA flight path over Englefield Green (which Heathrow states will be used until a 3rd runway is open) with 25 arrivals between 6-7am, some as low as 4,000ft with many estimated at over 60 decibels. If the IPA routes are permitted, they will also continue to operate at a less intense rate throughout the day. Our area would be overflown by either departures or arrivals every day with these proposals.

Source: Heathrow Consultation/Heathrow’s Airspace Design Envelopes for Expansion showing Arrivals – I3 with upto 25 flights per hour between 06:00 and 07:00 above 60dB to the southern runway on easterly arrivals, over the Air Forces Memorial, Englefield Green.

EGAG is indebted to Teddington Action Group for all their help.

3 thoughts on “Heathrow Airspace and Future Operations Consultation

  1. I value the effort made by everyone involved to estasblish the amount of extra flights but as I am already trouble with the amounts of pollution in the area I am wondering if this will also increase?.

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    1. With a minimum 54% increase in flights and a predicted 54,000 additional vehicles on local roads that a 3rd runway brings, also considering aircraft pollution from Landing and Take Off (LTO) cycles extends to 3,000 feet (according to the United Nations International Civil Aviation Organanisation (ICAO)) and that aircraft mainly fly over Englefield Green at heights from 1,300 feet, it is hard to consider anything but an increase in pollution in our area. If you consider climate change, Heathrow with the third runway, will be the largest CO2 emitter in the UK!

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  2. Air travel in and over the UK is increasing and this will develop further. The majority of UK residents avail themselves of flying within and outside the country and inevitably numbers of aircraft, pollution and increased road traffic will be the result. However, flight paths particularly around Heathrow should be planned in such a way that the noise and inconvenience would be shared more equally by all residents and people working in the area. The present state of planning ignores this equivalence completely. The ‘few’ will suffer for the ‘many’. It is time for the planners to rethink about the ramifications of their actions and spread the ‘load’ more fairly.

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