Monday, July 21, 2008

It's Simply a Rule of Thumb and, Do 406 Employees Make LCA a Major Employer in Newham?

Yet more evidence on just how much deception and collusion is going on between the aviation industry and government.

It is no surprise for those residents in East and South East London who are affected by London City Airport operations and whom are concerned at the possiblity of further flight expansion. They've been finding out lots of dirty secrets over the past 9 months.

Compare the Times article with:

1. London City Airport failed to take any
accurate noise readings of it's departing aircraft for 7 years - despite the amount of planes being allowed to operate being based on a noise factored movement.

2.This means that London
City Airport could have been allowing more noise factored movements than permitted in the Section 106 agreement.

3. Noise levels from individual craft at London City Airport could have exceeded beyond those set out in the Section 106 agreement to the detriment of the health
and well being of local residents. This means that there are no accurate noise readings or noise contour maps for the whole of the areas around the airport. No evidence is available to ensure that the airport has/is not exceeding the agreed noise limits or that homes have received the noise mitigation that they are entitled to.

4. LB Newham have failed to take any action in 7 years which ensured that London City Airport carried out regular and reliable noise data collection.

5. London City Airport, in its current application, has based it's case for flight expansion on estimated, unreliable noise and environmental data - purely because their methods of monitoring on site have failed consistently due to a lack of their committment to the requirements of the last planning application. Spot any parallels with the Heathrow Consultation debacle?

6. It appears that The Department for Transport has happily accepted 'estimated' noise data from London City Airport for 6 years as part of the EU directive requirement for all airports to provide annual data on noise contours. Did they never question why it was estimated, and not real, and the reason behind this, not even once?

7. Stephen Timms, MP for Newham supports expansion on the basis of adequate environmental measures and noise mitigation being implemented. He has failed to ensure that the environmental and noise measurements have been carried out, in his borough, for 7 years, where has he been? He has clearly not raised this as a concern with the LB of Newham, nor with the airport and continues to neglect to mention this in his articles. What confidence can residents have in him in ensuring the airport will meet future obligations, if they have failed consistently in the past, with no challenge from the authorities?

8. Job Growth - lies, lies and more lies. We all know that the job figures from London City Airport are a closely guarded secret, particularly the amount of Newham residents who are employed. Why? Because the figures are not as LCA promote, sorry, spin, them to be, and they are not flattering to them at all. It's something about 'burying bad news'.

Insiders inform us that they are not at all happy with what they feel is the ''purposeful
deception of the community into the belief that there has been or will be so many extra jobs at London City Airport'' . The LB Newham is supposed to collect annual job data from LCA - it appears that this had not occured if we are to take the word of LCA's Richard Gooding in a letter to Stephen Timms MP.

In addition Stephen Timms claims that the airport has "created 2000 jobs". What he doesn't tell you is how he calculated this figure - we believe he has added on the jobs in the local hotels and other neighbouring businesses (courtesy of the information being passed over from the LCA spin machine no doubt), even cab drivers- but how could he possibly isolate all these jobs outside of the airport as a direct result of the airport activities - and not the Excel Centre, or tourists looking for the best value hotel room in London?

LCA customer profiles indicate that the majority of their users earn on average over £86,000 per annum. It seems more likely that they perhaps would consider the Four Seasons Hotel in Docklands, or one of an equal standard in zone 1, over the lower star chains stituated by the airport, which suffer from up to 87db noise levels in the areas around them.

In fact the airport directly employs just 406 employees - as stated in a letter to Stephen Timms MP. The airport could not indicate how many of those 406 staff were part time.

Apparently, according to Stephen, the employment of 406 staff, none of whom could be identified as Newham residents by LCA at the time that the letter was written, nor of how many are part time makes LCA a 'major employer' in Newham. How's that? We think he is getting confused with THE major employer - Newham Council or perhaps Tate and Lyle?

The airport therefore does not employ 2000 people directly - and the use of the sentence 'created 2000 jobs' by Stephen Timms does nothing more than purposely continue to mislead the communities into reading that 2000 LCA jobs have been created - which they have not. Still, perhaps he is just following the precedent set by the Heathrow example.

It all smacks of collusion, maladministration and a purposeful deception of the communities for the purpose of big business getting its way, at any cost.

Residents have been let down and misled - it's time to make all these individuals accountable. Expansion cannot be based on estimates of noise and pollution, and the shocking lack of committment of the airport and the local council to ensure that conditions are met can only lead the majority to have a vote of 'no confidence' in them.

When most people do a bad job, fail to meet targets, requirements etc they usually get penalised for that - that's of course only if they haven't made lots of money for big business by failing to adminster the requirements. The making of money, and of looking after one's own career, of course supercedes all the other failures.