New flight paths around Farnborough

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The new flight paths around Farnborough (see maps below) mean that there will be increased aircraft noise in many towns in the area, as far away as Reading. The increase in the number of flights operating from Farnborough further increases the resulting disturbance.

The new “controlled airspace” allocated to Farnborough means that light aircraft, gliders, and other users of “uncontrolled airspace” will be squeezed into a much narrower region to the west, between Farnborough and Southampton airports’ controlled airspace. Given that Southampton is also intending to expand operations, this region is being steadily reduced in size.

This means that the density of air traffic in the “uncontrolled” area is increasing rapidly, with inevitable increase in noise and pollution, and a rapidly increasing risk of mid-air collision and deaths or serious damage on the ground. The areas in question are densely populated.

Using public figures from October 2019, we find that there are nearly 50 arrivals and 50 departures per day. From the aircraft mix seen in that month, and an estimate of average journey length, each flight will emit approximately 6 tonnes of CO2.

Farnborough has stated that the average passenger complement for each flight is approximately 2.

Thus, each passenger journey results in 3 tonnes of CO2 being emitted.

For comparison, a commercial airliner making the same journey would emit approximately 1/30th as much. A high speed train would emit approximately 1/250th – and that assumes that the train was powered by “typical” electricity sources. Renewables can substitute and drive the rail figure to near zero.

Further reading ‘Proposed changes below 4,000ft in the vicinity of Farnborough Airport’

 

Maps from Farnborough Farnham Herald

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