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Stop Stansted Expansion

CONSULTATION ON THE NUMBER OF PASSENGER FLIGHTS AT STANSTED

Report (21 April 2004) by Stop Stansted Expansion on the DfT's Consultation on the Revocation of Stansted PATM Limit, (announced 19 April 2004)

The DfT have just announced this consultation and views are required by May 25th.

Stansted PATM Limit: Explanatory Note

The official explanatory note is as follows:

  • Stansted is unique amongst UK airports in having a PATM limit (a limit on the number of take-offs and landings by passenger aircraft per year) imposed and regulated by Parliamentary approval.

  • The 1985 Airports Policy White Paper gave as the rationale for this "to provide a means of controlling the rate of expansion at Stansted in the light of developments in the London system as a whole and to assure local residents that an appropriate balance will be struck between aviation and local interests in the use of the airport."

  • The power under which the Secretary of State set the PATM limit (Section 32(1) of the Airports Act 1986) can only be used when the existing runway capacity is not fully utilised for a substantial proportion of the time.

  • The outline planning permission granted for Stansted in 1985 was to enable growth to cater for around 15 mppa. This was to be phased, with detailed permission only granted for development to 7-8 mppa. The 1987 PATM limit of 78,000 was intended to support that phasing. BAA sought an increase in the limit to 150,000 in 1995, which it argued would allow for growth to 15 mppa. After a public consultation exercise, the Government increased the limit in July 1996 to 120,000. A second revision of the limit was approved following a public consultation exercise in July 1999, which raised the limit to 185,000.

  • Stansted Airport Ltd applied for planning permission to expand the airport beyond 15 mppa in August 2001. An increase in capacity to 25mppa was approved with conditions in May 2003. Uttlesford DC imposed as a condition of planning permission an annual ATM limit of 241,000. This ATM limit is wider than the Statutory limit in that it covers cargo as well as passenger movements.

  • The Government agrees with BAA that, given the new condition imposed by the planning authority, a limit under S.32 of the Airports Act 1986 no longer serves any useful purpose and we should seek to have it removed. Any such decision would be subject to an affirmative resolution of both Houses of Parliament.

  • The timing of this issue is quite pressing, since BAA have confirmed that Stansted is operating near to the limit of 185,000 (around 160,000 in 2003).

  • The Parliamentary process involves the laying of a draft Statutory Instrument before Parliament, which will be debated in both Houses. 4-5 weeks is required for this process. The Instrument will revoke all three orders which have been issued for Stansted (1987, 1996 and 1999).

  • If the revoking order is adopted, the limit set by Uttlesford D.C in 2003 of 241,000 ATMs per year will remain in force, and any amendments to this in time will be undertaken through the normal planning process, not through Parliamentary procedure. 3

OUR COMMENT:

In the document you are asked to choose one of three options. The alleged benefits of each option are listed as follows. It is made clear in the supporting text that the Government wishes to remove any statutory limit on the number of flights.

External link to the FIVE PARISHES

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Stansted PATM Limit Consultation

Options

  1. ‘Do nothing’ - leave the statutory limit in place.

  2. Raise the statutory limit so that it matches the ATM limit in the Uttlesford planning approval for 25 mppa.

  3. Remove the statutory limit.

Benefits

  • Option A

    Potentially lower noise and environmental impacts than if the airport continued to grow.

  • Option B

    Growth in traffic will occur, which is in line with the conclusions of White Paper.

    Growth in traffic will create job opportunities in many sectors, including the aviation sector and sectors dependent on air accessibility. Airport growth will have a positive economic impact on the region.

  • Option C

    Growth in traffic will occur, which is in line with the conclusions of White Paper.

    Revocation of the Parliamentary limit would be a move towards local control of airport ATMs, bringing Stansted into line with other UK airports.

    Growth in traffic will create job opportunities in many sectors, including the aviation sector and sectors dependent on air accessibility. Airport growth will have a positive economic impact on the region.

Costs

  • Option A

    Fiscal considerations - Constraining growth at the airport would have a negative economic impact on businesses reliant on it e.g. airlines and other airport businesses, sectors heavily dependent on air accessibility, and local businesses.

    Cost of maintaining a central Government regulation.

    Non-fiscal considerations - failure to deliver conclusions of Air Transport WP.

  • Option B

    Fiscal considerations - Cost of maintaining a central Government regulation rather than the being monitored by the local authority.

    Non-fiscal considerations - Unnecessary duplication of regulation of the PATM limit;

    Environmental and noise impacts of increased traffic at the airport. (However these have been addressed by Uttlesford and BAA through the planning process for 25 mppa at Stansted).

  • Option C

    Fiscal considerations - none.

    Non-fiscal considerations - environmental and noise impacts of increased traffic at the airport.

    (However these have been addressed by Uttlesford and BAA through the planning process for 25 mppa at Stansted).

OUR COMMENT:

Many of these statements are very controversial! They need answering whichever option is considered to be best. There continues to be an assumption that more flights can only be good news for the region, that economic growth is directly related to airport growth and that environmental damage and urbanisation of the countryside is of no consequence.

Competition assessment

Removing the statutory limit means the new limit set by Uttlesford D.C comes into force. This allows an increase in ATMs which means an increase in slots for aircraft, and will encourage competition between airlines to make effective use of the airport's capacity.

Monitoring and review

Uttlesford D.C will monitor and enforce the locally agreed limit.

Contact

Hannah John
National Delivery Team
Airports Policy Division
Zone 1/26 Great Minster House
76 Marsham Street
London SW1P 4DR
Tel: 020 7944 4728
Fax: 020 7944 2191
Email: Hannah.john@dft.gsi.gov.uk

 

Original documents available at: www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_aviation/documents/page/dft_aviation_028327.hcsp

Also available for download at foot of page.

OUR COMMENT:

If aviation policies are based on such simplistic reasoning the future is bleak. We hope that people will respond to this consultation and will also complain about the inadequately thought out value judgements accompanying the options.

Pat Dale

 

Text taken from SSE's Latest News page.

 

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STOP STANSTED EXPANSION

DfT Consultation Documents

  DfT Consultation Document - Acrobat format 108 KB DfT Consultation Document - MS Word format 52 KB  
  108 KB 52 KB  
  Acrobat format MS Word format  
 

Taken from www.dft.gov.uk/stellent/groups/dft_aviation/documents/page/dft_aviation_028327.hcsp.

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External link to STOP STANSTED EXPANSION campaign

Stop Stansted Expansion

External link to the FIVE PARISHES

Five Parishes

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