Yesterday, 17th April (reference 19/00428) London Luton Airport Operations Limited (LLAOL) has submitted a new planning application to relax the day and night noise contour restriction imposed on their 2015 planning consent. You can see the application and associated documents at Luton.Gov Planning applications, or use the link : https://planning.luton.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=PP63GQKGIK000&fbclid=IwAR1yMBi43jmto_7aDvvQfxxUALcrl5DCfsjfZg5Py0uJ1hrRLGCg0ob-kgM
The application is currently being advertised as a departure from the local plan. Residents have 30 days in which to make an objection.
As part of the planning conditions for the current airport expansion in 2012, there were three conditions that were made, regarding airport airborne noise.
Condition 12 stated that the day and night noise contours (the areas in which aircraft noise occurs) would be reduced by 2028. On another application to vary planning permission in 2015, another condition was made to progressively reduce night-time noise up until 2028. At this point condition 12 became condition 10.
Planning Application 19/00428/EIA now seeks to remove this condition for five years – until 2024.
When the initial application was made in 2012 the prediction was that the 18 million passenger growth would not be met until 2028, and – as by then newer quieter aircraft would have been substantially introduced – Condition 10 would not be broken.
However, the airport operator (LLAOL) is allowing unfettered passenger expansion to maximise profits. This means that the passenger throughput in 2018 totalled 16.6 million passengers, and in 2021, the figure is now estimated to rise to 18 million.
Due to this unchecked growth of night-time flights, the night jet contours set out in Condition 10 were exceeded in 2017 by 500 flights. These were flights that should have operated in the daytime, but due to various circumstances, ran late into the night period – and were counted against this; causing the breech of levels.
The airport operator (LLAOL) lists the two main reasons for these daytime flights running late – as delays within the European Air Traffic system – and weather delays.
You’ll note that it doesn’t list any reasons attributable to them such as lack of ground handling staff; overcrowding of the limited apronage and taxiways available to move aircraft efficiently; congestion in an overcrowded terminal building; along with many other issues controllable by the airport operator (LLAOL).
They also allowed night-time access to Executive jets without restriction,as these are a lucrative source of income.
This all led to the night jet restrictions being enforced from 2018, from 1/06-30/09, and again for this year, restricting all operations within that period.
Planning Application 19/00428/EIA wants to remove all these restrictions for five years.
Removing these restrictions will benefit the airport operator (LLAOL), the airlines, and the executive jet operators. But removing these restrictions will not benefit those who are affected in their homes by aircraft noise all day, and now all night.
Please register your objections on the Luton Borough Council Planning Portal – against application 19/00423/EIA.
You will have 30 days from the publishing of this Application in the local press to register your objections.
Please take the time to do so.