Monday, June 29, 2009

Newham Planning Meeting - Next Week

Bearing in mind that Sunil Sahadaven and the Planning Team at Newham Council have failed to notify those residents who previously objected to the expansion of London City Airport: please find beneath the planning meeting notification.

Town and Country Planning Act 1990 (as amended)

Application No: 07/01510/VAR
Address: London City Airport, Hartmann Road, Silvertown, London, E16 2PX
Proposal: Application under Section 73 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to vary conditions 13 and 15 of the outline planning permission no.N/82/104 dated 23 May 1985, as previously varied by the Secretary of State on the 26 September 1991 and by the London Borough of Newham on 21 July 1998 and 11 July 2007, to allow up to 120,000 total aircraft movements per annum (number of total movements in 2006 was 79,616) with related modifications to other limits.

The above planning application will be considered at the Council's Development Control Committee scheduled for 8 July 2009 at Newham Town Hall, East Ham, E6.

The case officer has recommended to approve the planning application.

Any member of the public can attend the meeting, which starts at 7:00pm. If you wish to make representations at that Committee you should advise either Joy George or Shirley Fortune (Member Services, Town Hall, East Ham London E6 2RP) in writing by 12 (mid-day) the Monday prior to the Committee meeting. For further advice in regard to this matter you can contact them on 0208 430 3401 or by fax (020 8430 3052).

Yours faithfully,

Sunil Sahadevan

On behalf of JOHN FANNON, Borough Planning Officer

Nitrogen Dioxide Dangerously High at London City Airport

Why do we think London City Airport is making people ill? Because there is evidence out there which supports this:

The Chartered School of Physiotherapists

Over two thirds (16 out of 23) of the airports included in the CSP’s London (City), Southampton study recorded dangerously high levels of nitrogen dioxide – a noxious gas that irritates the airways of the lungs and causes breathing difficulties. The EU says nitrogen dioxide levels need to stay below 40 micrograms per cubic metre of air (mcg/m3) to be safe, but airports in Newcastle, Birmingham and London (Heathrow and Gatwick) exceed this recommendation by up to 75 per cent.

Readings at airports in Manchester, Liverpool, Blackpool, Sheffield, Humberside, London (City), Exeter and Gloucester are up to
50 per cent higher than the EU target.

Respiratory physiotherapists say the consequences of being exposed to the gas can be especially severe among people with existing lung conditions, like asthma, bronchitis and emphysema. CSP spokesperson, Professor Grahame Pope, says:

'The effects of airport emissions on air quality and public health are of serious concern to physiotherapists. It’s not just nitrogen dioxide polluting the environment around airports; our study reveals high ozone (see note 4) concentrations at some sites too. There’s no doubt that aircraft contribute to the problem, but it should be noted that cars, buses and taxis ferrying passengers to and from these sites are dominant sources of pollution. With cheap flights making air travel more affordable, several airports want to expand capacity. We would urge the government to consider ways of balancing passenger convenience with improving public health when looking at these proposals.'

Well, the government, nor Newham paid any serious attention to the CSP's request, because unlike the CSP ,they appear not to concern themselves with such matters.

Clearing the Air: The Myth and Reality of Climate Change and Aviation

You may wish to read the excellent report by the European Federation for Transport and Environment...point 3 blows away Peter Simpson's, of British Airways Cityflier, unsubstantiated claims about the 'better for the community' Embraers he is introducing to London City Airport (of course if Peter would like to pass the data over, along with the methodology he used to make such claims, then he knows our email address). In fact the whole report puts into question most of what the aviation lobby uses as it's 'formula' to justify the threat of continued greed not need expansion:

Executive summary:
  • in 2000, aviation was responsible for 4 to 9 per cent of
    the climate change impact of global human activity – the
    range reflecting uncertainty surrounding the effect of cirrus
    ◗ aviation has by far the greatest climate impact of any transport
    mode, whether measured per passenger kilometre, per
    tonne kilometre, per € spent, or per hour spent
    ◗ today’s passenger aircraft are no more fuel-efficient than
    those that flew half a century ago
    ◗ the importance of aviation for the economy and employment
    is far less than its importance for climate change
    ◗ every segment of the aviation industry including manufacturers,
    airlines and airports is subsidised and enjoys major tax

Section 2 examines some of the policy options under consideration
to combat the climate impact of aviation
The main conclusions of this section of the report are:

  • ◗ regional initiatives, such as those under discussion at EU
    level, provide the best hope for a multi-lateral solution to
    international aviation emissions for the foreseeable future

  • ◗ EU-level action does not affect the competitive position
    of EU airlines compared with their non-EU competitors,
    provided that policies do not discriminate between EU and
    non EU carriers flying the same routes (which is obligatory
    anyway under the Chicago Convention)

  • including aviation in the European Emissions Trading System
    (EU ETS) can be a good first step, provided the system is
    designed right
    additional measures like kerosene taxation and Nitrogen
    Oxide (NOx) emissions charges at airports are not only
    environmentally important but also justified in terms of cost

  • aviation is overwhelmingly an activity of the richest elements
    of society, measures to combat the environmental impact of
    aviation would not adversely impact the poor

  • a ‘development tax’ on tickets is a good way to make up
    for the VAT exemption of international air tickets and would
    benefit poor regions, not hurt them

And you may wish to consider the following information against the recent report that 55% of children in the London Borough of Newham live in poverty - after 20 years of the airport running, and it claiming to have brought prosperity to Newham:

More expensive air travel is bad news for the poor.

“Air transport contributes to citizens’ desire for more travel at
democratic prices.”
AEA 2006

It’s the rich that fly, even in this era of low-cost
carriers – if aviation paid its true costs we could
help the poor a lot more

All italicised extracted from:
Pictured above: Cirrus clouds

Friday, June 26, 2009

How's Your Health: Around London City Airport?

Why do we and others want to stop expansion at London City Airport? That little matter of health is rather important us, even if it isn't to LCY (and its supporters) who are allegedly hiding air quality readings from the GMB who accuse them of a toxic terminal!
Well here's some toxic evidence for you:
Health in the areas around the airport:
The Biggest killers in the London Borough of Newham are: in order;

2.Chronic obstructive pulmonary

The 2001 Census reported that 26,000 people (10.5% of total population) in Newham live with a long term limiting illness; including 4,000 under 19, and 12,500 aged 65 and over

Newham has higher than average infant mortality and the gap is widening

Higher than average respiratory diseases

Highest level of mortality rates in under 30s with asthma in the whole country

Higher than average mortality rates from asthma, pneumonia and chronic obstructive pulmonary (CHC) disease than London and England

Higher than average infant mortality rates: Newham has above average levels for London and England – with the gap widening, not narrowing

Comparative evidence of the connections of these illnesses to aircraft pollution:

Taken from campaign group LEAD:
“The area heavily contaminated by a light to medium traffic two runway airport is approximately 12 miles around the field and 20 miles or more downwind. A single runway equipped airport with light to medium traffic contaminates an area about 6 miles around the field and 20 downwind”.

Extract of "Airports: Deadly Neighbors" by Charles R. Miller

What kinds of health effects may be occurring to the population in your neighborhood can be seen from a report, dated June 20, 1997 to the Georgetown Crime Prevention and Community Council by the Seattle-King County Department of Public Health.

Georgetown is an area of Seattle, and surrounds the King County International Airport (Boeing Field), King County, in turn, surrounds greater Seattle. (The Georgetown Council is a sister organization to AReCO and member of US-CAW (United States Citizens Aviation Watch). When comparing hospitalization rates for Georgetown (Zip Code 98108) to those of King and North King Counties, the following, alarming statistics resulted:

a 57% higher asthma rate
a 28% higher pneumonia/influenza rate
a 26% higher respiratory disease rate
an 83% higher pregnancy complication rate
a 50% higher infant mortality rate
genetic diseases are statistically higher
mortality rates are 48% higher for all causes of death: 57% higher for heart disease, a 36% higher cancer death rate with pneumonia and influenza among the top five leading causes average life expectancy 70.4 years (the same as in many developing nations) compared to Seattle's of 76.0 years.

Can you see any similarities there? It's hard not to see them. Still the aviation industry will keep telling you how clean and green they are, Peter Simpson of City Flyer is one of those who should be answerable to those individuals in the area around London City who are ill from the effect of his business seeking more profits, whilst air limits already exceed EU recommended levels by 50%.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

London City Airport's Economics - The FACTS

London City Airport costs London taxpayers over £5million a year in Metropolitan Police security costs

LCA costs taxpayers, per passenger 1000% (£1.70) more than Heathrow passengers

Each direct aviation job receives a tax subsidy of £50,000 per year, £1000 per week or £25 per day by way of the £9billion lost in fuel tax and vat which the aviation industry are excused from paying

In 1998, at the last expansion, London City Airport promised jobs would go from 1100 to 4000 direct and indirect jobs

In 2008 the airport claims to have 'created' 2000 jobs – but there is no hard evidence – this falls short by 2000 of their claims in 1998

In 2008 the airport directly employs just 406 people, of which 120 come from Newham

The airport has failed to meet the employment targets as set out in the section 106.

Newham residents should make up 35% of employees, they make up 29%.

Local employment (local regarded as a five mile radius) should be 70% but is 68%.

Newham is the most socially deprived borough in London and England, even after 20 years of the airports claimed effect on regeneration on the community

London City Airport contributed a 'small contribution of £2million' to the DLR which cost £140million – this was questioned by the Transport Select Committee, May 2007


London City Airport and the aviation industry are nothing more than modern day highwaymen...stand a deliver your taxes now!!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Lord Adonis Sees Demise of Short Flights - More bad news for LCY!!

Article seen in the Sunday Times:

Lord Adonis sees demise of short flightsSteven Swinford THE new transport secretary, Lord Adonis, believes a 200mph high-speed rail network in Britain will spell the end for domestic flights and short flights to Europe.

In his first interview since joining the cabinet, Adonis said the market for internal flights would collapse within the next 20 years as the train becomes the preferred mode of travel.

The proposed high-speed rail network would cut journey times from London to Manchester to 1hr 22min and Glasgow to 2hr 42min. Adonis envisages that it could use French-style TGV trains.

He said high-speed rail would also replace flights from Britain to destinations including Amsterdam, Brussels, Cologne, Lyon and Rotterdam. He believes the rise of high-speed rail will help to cut carbon emissions and offer passengers more comfortable and enjoyable journeys than travelling by plane.

Related Links
High-speed rail line will cost public £8bn
Rail trip blog of the minister, Lord Adonis
“High-speed rail is not only important for providing additional rail capacity between our biggest conurbations. I would like to see domestic and short-haul flights largely replaced by high-speed rail over the next 20 years,” he said.

“The evidence internationally is that passengers want to have the choice of making these journeys by train rather than plane, because [trains offer] greater convenience, comfort and [are] much less hassle than going through airports. This is not about the government dictating to people how to travel, but the free choices that people make when they are offered a viable and attractive alternative to flying.”

The proposed high-speed rail network, due to be completed by 2020, would initially run from London to Birmingham and eventually extend to Manchester and Glasgow. Detailed plans are being developed by a government-backed company. Early estimates indicate that the line will cost up to £30 billion. The government will make its final policy decision in early 2010.

“We have a very exciting agenda for transport investment over the next 10 years and I believe that will be a central part of our manifesto,” Adonis said.

Rail is already gaining at the

expense of air travel. Domestic flights have been in steady decline in recent years, with the number of passengers falling from 26.1m in 2005 to 24.3m last year. The number of passengers travelling from London to Manchester by air has fallen from 1.94m in 2003 to 1.35m last year. The number of railway passengers has increased over the same period, from 2.1m to 3.3m.

According to Adonis, by 2029 many European cities will be within 3½ hours from London by train, which he sees as the tipping point at which people switch from air travel.

By the end of the year a new high-speed link from Brussels to Amsterdam will help to cut journey times from London to Amsterdam from five hours to 3½. Another new line will cut journey times from London to Cologne to four hours.

Adonis believes the success of high-speed rail in Europe will provide a template for Britain.

“Air France has stopped flying between Paris and Brussels because of high-speed rail, Lufthansa has stopped flying between Cologne and Frankfurt,” he said.

“Since the high-speed line opened between Madrid and Barcelona, the proportion of people [in Spain] travelling by train compared to plane has risen from 16% to 68%.”

The Department for Transport believes high-speed rail could reduce the number of passengers on domestic and short-haul flights at Heathrow by 9.4m, equivalent to 14% of all flights from the airport. However, Adonis remains committed to a third runway at Heathrow, insisting the extra capacity will be needed because of an increase in long-haul flights.

He wants to improve access to Heathrow by public transport, either with a high-speed rail hub or new interchanges.

“Heathrow is currently running at 99% capacity and, given the projections for long-haul traffic over the next 20 years, an increase in airport capacity in the southeast is needed,” he said.

Adonis is a self-confessed train lover rather than a motoring enthusiast. He owns a Vauxhall Vectra, which he rarely drives, while his ministerial car is a Toyota Prius.

“When I say I drive a Vauxhall Vectra, I drive it a few miles every weekend to do the shopping and take the children to their events. Virtually all my long-distance journeys are made by train,” he said.

He is, however, anxious not to antagonise the motoring public. In the interview he ruled out a national road pricing scheme, and committed the government to relieving congestion by opening up the hard shoulders on motorways to traffic, despite concerns among some motoring groups over safety. Work is under way on hard shoulder schemes on stretches of the M6, M1, M25 and M4.

“Hard shoulder running produces a big increase in capacity but at a fraction of the cost of motorway widening and much less of an environmental impact. It has no impact on safety whatsoever,” Adonis said.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Boris Johnson & Sir Robin Wales of Newham are Gambling With YOUR Health and FUTURE

Bad Air Causes 4400 Londoners To Die Early Every Year
Liberal Democrat Research:

At least 4,400 Londoners are dying prematurely every year because of air pollution, according to research by the Liberal Democrats. In Tower Hamlets the expansion of flights into and out of London City airport and a possible third runway at Heathrow will increase local air pollution and noise nuisance.

London is doing badly on two measures of air quality - particles leading to premature death and the nitrogen dioxide emissions which aggravate childhood asthma. Nitrogen dioxide emissions are particularly associated with air travel, strengthening the case against a third runway at Heathrow.

Commenting, Liberal Democrat MP for Richmond Park, and leading campaigner against a third Heathrow runway, Susan Kramer said:

"It is almost impossible to comprehend that well over 4,000 people a year in our city are having their lives cut short needlessly. Yet despite this, Gordon Brown rammed through plans for the third runway against massive opposition.

The Government and the Mayor have to explain why they have been dragging their feet on pollution whilst massively underestimating the damage being done. People are paying for this inaction with their lives."

Leader of the Council group on Tower Hamlets Council, Cllr Stephanie Eaton said:

"Many flights into Heathrow pass directly over Tower Hamlets. Flights into and out of nearby City Airport cause noise and air pollution. The Mayor of London must address this issue before more people have their lives blighted by asthma and the disturbances of aircraft noise."

Liberal Democrats are pressing for the UK to fully comply with air quality laws in time for the 2012 Olympics.


And what is Mayor Boris Johnson doing about this? He supported expansion at London City Airport - which will add 50% more pollution to East London in an area which already exceeds EU air quality levels by 50%. This leaves East London with nothing but TOXIC air with a GROWING contribution from a TOXIC London City Airport. Asthma levels are set to continue to increase, and to stay at the highest mortality rates in under 30s in Newham in the whole of the country.

Does Mayor Johnson care about the health and welfare of East Londoners?
Does Sir Robin Wales's Newham Council care about the health and welfare of East Londoners?
They both SUPPORT expansion at ANY cost, on estimated, unreliable and flawed data provided by the disingenuous and desperate London City Airport.

They are gambling with YOUR health and YOUR future.
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Friday, June 12, 2009

12 FACTS about London City Airport

  • Failed to take actual reliable noise readings from 2000 to 2008
  • Failed to take reliable air readings from 2000 to 2008
  • Since 2006 the airport has been exceeding their air traffic movement limit of 76,000, steadily climbing to almost 100,000
  • Failed to have an efficient and accurate complaints system
  • Consistently deceived the community by providing incorrect and partial misinformation.
  • Noise mitigation programme years behind schedule
  • Noise mitigation eligibility: Only homes built or given approval after 1997 are eligible for noise management – this excludes around 99% of homes in projected noise contours.
  • 46,000 additional residents across 3 boroughs will be bought into the noise contours, 100,000s of residents will be affected beyond the contour
  • An estimated 1000 family homes in Greenwich will be in the extended public safety zone (crash zone)
  • Drew Road Primary School is less than 200 yards from the airport terminal
  • The airport is situated in the most densely populated area of the whole country
  • Aviation is the fastest growing source of C02 emissions and if it continues at it's current rate will use up all the Climate Bill emission allowance, even with using carbon credits
    The climate bill accepts the effect of greenhouse gases on our environment – aviation is ignoring it and is being given preferential treatment in doing so.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Press Release: Plane Stupid's Action At London City Airport


Fight the Flights is not a direct action group, but we fully appreciate the frustration that the climate change activists feel in getting their voices, and concerns heard on aviation expansion, and how aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of CO2 emissions.

It is no wonder that some campaigners feel they are being pushed into taking non violent direct action because the system is failing people of their democratic rights to protect their communities, futures and their environment from harmful ‘runaway’ airport and flight expansion.

Just under a 100,000 residents in east and south east London will be affected by the increasing excessive noise levels from London City Airport upon expansion, and yet less than 10,000 were claimed to have been consulted by the London Borough of Newham. Most will not be entitled to any noise insulation. They will have to live with the consequences every day of their lives, each time a flight takes off and lands. The majority do not have the option to move, and many lived in the area long before the airports creation.


In just over 20 years the airport has only managed to directly employ 120 Newham residents out of the 406 directly employed staff the airport claim to employ.

London taxpayers have also paid £24million for the airports security provided by the Metropolitan Police over the past 5 years, which the airport refuse to pay.

In addition the air quality above London City Airport exceeds EU directive levels by 50% and was termed as ‘toxic’ but this was not acknowledged by the London Borough of Newham. In a borough which has the highest level of mortality in under 30s with asthma in the whole country, Newham should be focussing on improving air quality, not adding to the pollution by approving further expansion at this residentially situated airport in the most densely populated area of England.

Eroded Democracy

Residents have been constantly thwarted and ignored by this government and the London Borough of Newham when providing evidence against the expansion. Requests for a public inquiry into the planned 50% expansion of flights at London City Airport was refused by Hazel Blears, Secretary of State in 2008, whilst the London Borough of Newham showed no concern that 100s of homes in Greenwich will now be in the crash zone and failed to address the risk to residents and communities who live, work or travel through the crash zone in both Newham and Greenwich. However in contrast the government and council appear to consistently listen to the aviation at the expense of the communities: this is expansion at any cost.

With a government that does not listen to local concerns on the effects of expansion on third party safety, increasing pollution levels, the effect on residents health and children’s development, and the contribution to climate change, it is no wonder that we are seeing actions such as this more frequently.


Tuesday, June 09, 2009

The Guardian and Docklands 24 Only Papers To Expose Toxic Fumes Story At London City Airport

The Docklands 24 Paper has not been afraid to write an article on the Toxic Fumes that the GMB Union are claiming London City Airport allow to affect passengers and staff at the airport.

Please see an e-version of the article here

The Guardian Eco Soundings has also looked into it Read Here

Other Local Papers seem to not want to write about this yet. We ask ourselves why? We have a good idea but we're sure they'd deny it.

See what LCY have tried to hide from the public and how they are denying it now.

As far as Fight The Flights are concerned this is all normal behavior from London City Airport.

Who would YOU believe the staff being affected by the fumes or the airport that is desperate to stop any negative reporting.? We know who we believe.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Fumes 'poisoning London City Airport staff'

LCY Poisoning Staff, Passengers & the Community

'Aviation union GMB demanded today that London City airport bring in independent monitors to assess the impact of excess fumes on passengers and staff.

The privately owned airport operates a unique parking system for aircraft, with the tail exhaust pointing directly into the passenger lounge.

According to the union, regular discharges of toxic fumes are propelled into the customer lounges with potentially long-term health implications.

Some employees have already been taken ill as a direct result of working in areas exposed to the poisonous fumes.

GMB organiser Stephanie Attwood said that members had reported signs of poisonous exposure including dry mouths, headaches and breathing difficulties.

"GMB members working in this area have to vacate the room on a daily basis in order to escape having to breathe in the toxic air," she said.

Ms Attwood also drew attention to the health of passengers and future visitors to the 2012 Olympics site, which is located in the area.

"Members of the travelling public who land at London City airport have to use this area too, as will competitors and visitors to the Olympics."

Employers at the airport are using "in-house" monitoring equipment to gauge the severity of the fumes and their potential effect on passengers.

Surprisingly, however, GMB has been denied access to the results of the tests and has expressed "serious doubts" about their accuracy and validity.

"We have received an independent environmental report which states that there were volatile organic compounds present in the air sampled, sufficient to cause discomfort and possibly ill health.

"GMB is amazed at London City airport's refusal to agree to full independent monitoring to this potentially dangerous situation," said Ms Attwood.

She appealed to employers at the airport to "get real" and "finally put the health of passengers first.

"The reality of the situation is that London City airport has chosen to sacrifice the health of their passengers and staff in order to line their pockets with high levels of profit," Ms Attwood added.

National co-ordinator of the Campaign against Climate Change Phil Thornhill called for the "full disclosure" of tests carried out by the airport on pollution levels.

London City airport was unavailable for comment.'