Whereas the Airport Noise and Capacity Act of 1990 and its implementing regulation, 14 CFR Part 161, provide for a process to obtain FAA approval of local airport noise and access restrictions;
Whereas, the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport’s (MSP) small size, urban setting and wind and weather patterns limit safe flight capacity; and
Whereas, the MSP needed capacity, runway design, costs, and compatibility with land use and environmental regulations were determined in the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and Record of Decision (ROD) issued by the Federal Aviation Administration in September 1998.
Now, therefore, the undersigned (including those signing on-line) hereby petition the following entities as set forth below:
The City of Minneapolis and other municipalities around MSP, considering how overflights affect resident health and quality of life, and how developments may be limited or aided by MSP operations, should:
- Withdraw from the MSP Noise Oversight Committee unless (a) a new noise analysis that considers health risk studies is completed and (b) the near-favoring, noise-abating departure procedures and gradual approaches defined in the FEIS and ROD and MSP Noise Compatibility Plans circa 1999 are reinstated.
- Enlist Commissioners representing residents and Mayors to reform Commission policies regarding community and state noise and land-use standards so that community-expressed needs for safe, sufficient, and affordable air transportation services are met without obtrusive or unsafe overflights
The State of Minnesota, through executive actions and appointments or legislation, should:
- Assure that air service needs are properly forecast and that the long-term costs of airport capital projects and operations (including fares and fees for local travelers) do not impede or prevent the economic developments included in the need forecast.
- Require and oversee public hearings and independent determinations of fact regarding environmental impacts, including noise and air pollution, and the economic need for and effects of capital and operational costs on local (origin and destination) passengers.
The Federal government, in fulfilling its responsibility for public health and safety, should:
- Replace the Integrated Noise Model (INM) and annual-average forecast day-night level (DNL) with a more reliable and predictive standard by September 30, 2014.
- Direct the FAA to more frequently exercise its authority to direct flights for noise reduction and related health and safety benefits until more predictive standards are developed.
- Make conservative safety adjustments to airspace management plans and airport rules and procedures that are consistent with current air traffic systems and aircraft capabilities and discontinue efforts to operate as often as possible at minimum intervals between flights.
- Assure that automated flights and satellite-based surveillance systems are functional, reliable, and fully deployed for airport air traffic control, and that that aircraft are properly equipped and air crews properly trained and rested prior to a change-over to PBN routes or other flight automation near airports.
- Reconsider all US flight routes and schedules to more effectively use existing airport capacity and reduce fuel burn associated with city-hub-city and other multi-leg air travel that increases the distance traveled (compared to more direct routes) or increases airport operations per passenger transported.