Gatwick Airport Noise Compensation Scheme (1)

Meeting: 
MQT on 2014-02-26
Session date: 
February 26, 2014
Reference: 
2014/0621
Question By: 
Steve O'Connell
Organisation: 
GLA Conservatives
Asked Of: 
The Mayor

Question

Do you welcome Gatwick Airport's significant expansion of their noise compensation scheme? Do you agree that Gatwick's scheme should be a model for all of London's airports?

Answer

Answer for Gatwick Airport Noise Compensation Scheme (1)

Answer for Gatwick Airport Noise Compensation Scheme (1)

Answered By: 
The Mayor

I welcome Gatwick's proposal to significantly expand the area in which homeowners are offered up to £3000 to mitigate the harmful impacts of aviation noise. It is a small step in the right direction, and one which recognises the very harmful impacts that can arise from exposure to aviation noise.

It is not, however, a model for all London's airports. The area that will be covered by the scheme has not been defined as a result of noise exposure at specific levels, and appears arbitrary. It does not cover all the homes routinely overflown and subject to potentially harmful levels of aircraft noise. A maximum of 869 more homes (around 2,000 people) will qualify. The maximum cost to the airport is around £3million, which is equivalent to only 5 days operating profit.

Financial compensation and mitigation measures will never be more than a second best palliative; the only really effective solution is the removal of noise from densely populated areas on the model of relocating Heathrow to a new site on the Isle of Grain.

In the meantime London's airports should offer an even more comprehensive compensation and noise mitigation scheme than the one proposed by Gatwick. One which covers all inhabited buildings, including schools, hospitals and offices, and one which protects everyone exposed to potentially harmful noise levels.