Response 490106215

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G. Do you consent for your response to be published?

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No

General observations

1. Considering the draft guidance overall, to what extent does it meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How would you improve?
Comprehensive. Other than how a change that would not be ‘Proportionate’ if it was to follow the full process will be handled, the draft guidance is relatively clear. Notwithstanding, I believe that the proposed process is too resource intensive and will not deliver airspace modernisation in a timely or effective way. Transparent. Other than how a change that would not be ‘Proportionate’ if it was to follow the full process will be handled, the draft guidance is relatively explained well and visible to the public. However, it is clear that the initial ideas for change could cause many issues if they were to be given public visibility at a stage when the full feasibility was not known. Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge; in addition for transparency, the public need to know the reasons of how, why and when the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of some scenarios that show examples of a Tier 1a change that do not require the full process and what has to be completed would be provide more certainty and clarity.
General observations
General Observations. - DfT and CAA Consultations on Airspace. There are too many areas within both the recent DfT consultation on UK Airspace Policy and this consultation that are subject to change based on the outcome of the other consultations These outcomes could change the response that I would have given. It would have been better for the DfT consultation response to have been published and then the CAA's consultation commenced based on more information being 'known'. - Regulatory Impact Assessment. A Regulatory Impact Assessment should be used to inform this consultation of the costs and risks associated with these proposals. Without such an assessment showing an overall benefit, it is difficult to justify the changes being proposed owing to the potential impact on airspace modernisation and the aviation industry such that the intent of FAS may not be met. - Gateways (Page 14, Para 43). As commented in an earlier consultation response, the Statement: “It is important to note that passing a gateway successfully does not predetermine the CAA’s final decision on the airspace change proposal. What it does is give more certainty to those interested in the proposal that the CAA has agreed to the steps taken to reach that point in the process.” makes no sense that if a ‘Gateway’ has been successfully passed (i.e. agreed by the CAA) that the CAA could later decide to turn down an application based on information that had previously been agreed to by the CAA in order to pass through the gateway. Whilst this may be a procedural ‘pass’ as in all information and requirements have been provided, it would be far better if the ‘Gateway’ was a known pass/fail point in the decision process such that further resources would not be wasted where the CAA informed the sponsor that the change could not be taken forward or the sponsor cannot meet the requirements rather than having to continue to the end of the process. - “Passing a gateway successfully does not predetermine the CAA’s later final decision on whether to accept the airspace change proposal.” (Page 18, Para 56). As commented earlier, it makes no sense that if a ‘Gateway’ has been successfully passed. i.e. agreed by the CAA, that the CAA could later decide to turn down an application based on a gateway that has been agreed to. Unless new information has been produced that makes an earlier Gateway pass invalid, the Gateways should be decision points. - Regulatory Change (Page 16, Para 29, Bullet 1). The statement “The CAA is not responsible for developing airspace designs or instigating airspace changes, other than in exceptional circumstances. Such circumstances may include a change to meet international obligations where no individual change sponsor can be identified, or one that is required to implement changes in national policy.” is important as it implies that this process is not applicable where there is regulatory change; this is important to know as if every airport and ANSP had to follow this process the whole system would become unworkable. There should be a dedicated section in the Draft Guidance on airspace changes that have to be implemented to meet changes in Regulation. Such changes, where they are mandated, may not meet the requirements within the Guidance and there should be a published mechanism in order to make such changes. - Increased Length of the Process. The new process is too long (109 weeks or longer) with less certainty of success and more expense and risk placed onto the airspace sponsor. The whole of aviation is dynamic and within a 109 week period the whole business could have changed with airlines moving location and/or routes that could make an airspace change proposal needless. Airspace is a national asset and its safe and efficient use is necessary without favouring any one aerodrome or ANSP unless there is Government policy that gives priority. The Competent Authority could administer to the Regulatory requirement so no one ANSP owns the airspace they purely take custody and try to operate it safely and efficiently. During a debate on this and the DfT’s consultations, a comment was overheard that “The Regulator needs to 'regulate' and stop using excuses that the ANSP commercial aspect is the problem.” The issue is that compared to mainland Europe and Ireland, where most airports are Government owned or managed or there are only a one to three ANSPs, the majority, if not all, of the UK’s airports are privately owned (with one or two owned by a council or a council has a small number of shares in the airport) and there are 62 privately owned ANSPs, all of which are competing with each other. This means that the UK is in a more difficult position as competing forces are unlikely to agree, the regulator ought to take ownership and make decisions in the best interest of the UK PLC. - Airspace Change Proposals that are Safety Related. There should be a dedicated section in the Draft Guidance on airspace change proposals that are being progressed with the primary goal of enhancing safety or where a safety event has shown that a change needs to be made. In such circumstances, there should be a published statement within the Guidance of how and why such changes are implemented without following the process. - Freedom of Information Act (FIA). The Draft Guidance should set out the FIA requirements associated with airspace change proposals that the CAA must comply with. A clear statement is required in the Draft Guidance that explains that stakeholders will not be able to access commercially sensitive material via the online portal or other means of correspondence between the sponsor and the CAA. Alternatively, the CAA must make it clear to Sponsors that their commercial data might have to be made available under FIA. - CAA Resources. Does the CAA have the all of the necessary resources or will every ACP be prioritised and, therefore, potentially delayed? - Verify Noise Forecasts and Noise Data (Page 16, Para 51, Bullet 3). There is currently no requirement for other than specified airports to produce noise reports or data. Without a baseline, how can ICCAN be expected to recommend the best way forward? This should be proportional based on number of movements and type of aircraft at an airport as small Regional Airports do not have the resources. Clarity is required on whether noise monitoring data is required to be provided by all airports and if so, to what standard, in what format, for every runway and/or circuit? - “Each ‘people overflown’ metric used in the appraisal must apply national policy and therefore include housing, hospitals, schools etc that have planning permission. It must also have regard to local plans, such as what is anticipated under Local Development Frameworks.” (Page 36, Para 126). This is all very well but what about where the development is recorded within an airports ‘Master Plan’? Is this taken into account similar to ‘Local Plans’? Where an airport’s development should have been known to planning and the local population yet planning has allowed for competing development, which takes priority? What should perhaps happen is that any permitted local authority development against an airport’s Master Plan should be assumed to be cognisant and acceptance of that plan and its probable impacts. - “The appraisal should use WebTAG13, the Department for Transport’s appraisal method, for health impacts associated with noise, and potentially for other impacts where possible.” (Page 36, Para 127). Where historic data has not been previously required (as will be the case with most airports), there will be little to compare so the impact on the proposal compared to the existing position will be virtually impossible to assess. - “Once the formal proposal has been submitted, the first phase of Step 5A is for the CAA to carry out a document check and ensure that the necessary gateways have been passed and process followed. The CAA will confirm this using the online portal.” (Page 55, Para 197). This should be a tick box exercise as the CAA should have confirmed this already at each stage? If there is a process ‘failure’ at this point, surely the CAA would be accountable? - “to undertake continuous engagement with stakeholders, and” (Page 78, Para 279, Bullet 1). What is the meaning of ‘continuous’ in this context? - “Some airports currently offer flight-tracking information to provide communities with a degree of transparency and certainty over traffic patterns – where airports are not currently offering such services, and experience Tier 3 level changes, they should consider whether it is appropriate to adopt such technologies, and engage with their local communities to ensure their views are considered.” (Page 84, Para 304). This is only possible in airspace where the carriage of the necessary equipment to enable such flight following is enabled. In Class G or airspace where the carriage of SSR Modes A, C, S, ADS-B, etc are not mandated, the number of non-participating (non-transponding) aircraft could render the information provided unrealistic. - B1, B2 and B3 (Pages 110 - 112). Is there a defined format for the data (other than embedding the data onto an OS type map)? What if the airport does not have the technology to produce such diagrams?

Tier 1a: Stages 1 to 7

2. Considering Stage 1 (Define) of the process , to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

3. Considering Stage 2 (Develop and assess) of the process, to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

4. Considering Stage 3 (Consult) of the process, to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

5. Considering Stage 4 (Update and submit) of the process, to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

6. Considering Stage 5 (Decide) of the process, to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Transparent. There needs to be a more transparent process within the CAA such that as each ‘Gateway’ is reached and a decision made that the sponsor can continue that a conversation has taken place as to the acceptability of the proposal to the ‘CAA Decision Maker’. It makes no sense that if a ‘Gateway’ has been successfully passed (i.e. agreed by the CAA) that the CAA could later decide to turn down an application based on information that had previously been agreed to by the CAA in order to pass through the gateway. Whilst this may be a procedural ‘pass’ as in ‘all information and requirements have been provided’, it would be more efficient in resource terms if it was known at an early stage that the ‘Decision Maker’ would not be minded to agree to the change such that the CAA would inform the sponsor that the change could not be taken forward or, following a discussion with the CAA on issues with the proposal that the sponsor cannot meet the requirements, rather than having to continue to the end of the process. Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

7. Considering Stage 6 (Implement) of the process, to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

8. Considering Stage 7 (Post-implementation review) of the process, to what extent does the draft guidance on that stage meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Proportionate. It is not clear within the guidance exactly how an initial proposal will be reviewed to decide which process is to be followed. There is mention of ‘proportionate’ but there is no flow chart to explain transparently both to industry and the public how the CAA judges what has to be followed and, if it is really to be a proportionate process, what Stages or parts of the Stages/process are not required in certain circumstances. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. Additionally, industry needs to have certainty and reassurance that this process will not be used for all changes otherwise the resources required and risk to the change would in all probability prevent airspace modernisation where small changes are involved. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

Tier 1a: Evidence of engagement

9. At certain stages in the process (starting with the development of design principles at Step 1b) the CAA will look for evidence of a two-way conversation to see that the sponsor has adequately engaged stakeholders. In paragraph C9 the CAA describes the evidence that we will look for as "detail of what sponsors have been told by their audiences; how they responded to this feedback; and how it has affected the proposals they are bringing forward".    Has the CAA adequately detailed what we would expect to see to know that a two-way conversation has taken place?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
Don't know
What else to show two way conversation?
N/A

Tier 1a:Third-party facilitation

10. At various points in the process (starting with the development of design principles at Step 1b) the CAA suggests that voluntary use of a third-party facilitator could be useful. Should the CAA be more prescriptive as to how and when a facilitator could be used?

Please select one item
Yes
No
Ticked Don't know
Facilitator further detail
This comment is not based on a 'Yes'. It is difficult to know when a third-party facilitator should be used or even why one would be used as even where there was an impasse in views it should really be the CAA as the Competent Authority that should arbitrate and decide between opposing positions. There is also the issue of who is responsible for paying for the third party facilitator, should it be shared between the sponsor and the responder who wants the facilitation or, indeed, should the CAA fund the facilitator where it believes that the CAA cannot provide an independent view?

11. Are there any other places in the process at which you feel that a facilitator would be useful?

Facilitator - which places
I am not convinced that a facilitator is necessary. This is something that the sponsor or the CAA should lead.

Tier 1a: Categorisation of responses

12. In paragraphs 177 and C34-C36, and Table C2, we discuss the categorisation of consultation responses. The sponsor is required to sort consultation responses into two categories: i) those responses that have the potential to impact on the proposal because they include new information or ideas that the sponsor believes could lead to an adaptation in a lead design option or a new design option, and ii) those that do not. Is the CAA's explanation of the categorisation exercise and description of the categories sufficient?

Please select one item
Yes
Ticked No
Don't know
Categorisation - additional detail
Whilst the categorisation is clear, the description of the categories is insufficient and, therefore, open to interpretation. Examples should be provided, preferably in a scenario format.

Tier 1a: Options appraisal

13. In paragraph E25 and E34 the CAA states that methodologies for the various aspects of the options appraisal should be agreed between the CAA and the sponsor at an early stage in the process, on a case-by-case basis. This provides flexibility for different local circumstances. Does this approach strike the right balance between proportionality and consistency?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
Don't know
OA - explain re proportionality
Despite stating yes, the methodology needs to be transparent such that it would not be open to a later challenge. The CAA would need to detail its reasons for agreeing the process for the different local circumstance.

Tier 1a: Safety information

14. At each stage in the airspace change process that an options appraisal takes place, the sponsor will be required to submit a safety assessment. The sponsor will be required to provide a plain English summary of the safety assessment and the CAA will provide a plain English summary of its review (i.e. of the Letter of Acceptance, which forms the CAA’s review of the safety assessment) when it makes a decision. These documents will be available on the portal.   Do you have any views on specific information that should be included and/or excluded from the plain English summary of the sponsor’s safety assessment and the CAA’s review? 

Safety assessment
If the safety assessment is published on the portal, will the public understand what it is saying in a meaningful way? A plain English interpretation of ALARP is not easy to understand whereas a change to meet a regulation is straight forward to address. It is understood that there will be one safety assessment for the airspace change that is updated to reflect the latest position within the process. Regarding “Government policy and legislation – noting that Section 70 of the Transport Act 2000 states that the CAA must “maintain a high standard of safety”.”, what is the definition of a high standard of safety and how will this 'safety assessment' work? For instance, are Class G operations for CAT and fare paying passengers a ‘high standard of safety’ given the current feelings following the recent fire in the Tower Block? Many aerodromes lie within Class G or have islands of CAS surrounded by Class G and yet CAT is allowed to freely mix and operate within Class G. Is this maintaining an appropriate ‘high standard of safety’ or is the UK authorising a different approach compared to International norms?

Tier 1b: Temporary airspace changes

15. Considering Tier 1b changes, to what extent does the draft guidance on temporary airspace changes meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Transparent. The CAA must clearly articulate why the full process is not required highlighting that this is temporary; moreover, where the change is for an Air Display, does a full analysis have to be made? It would be useful if a list of exemptions from the requirement to consult are detailed to avoid any later challenge, such as military training airspace. Proportionate. It is clearer that there will be a review and certain of the stages do not have to be followed. However, the inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that do not require the full process and what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

Tier 1c: Operational airspace trials

16. Considering Tier 1c changes, to what extent does the draft guidance on operational airspace trials meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
Ticked 1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Transparent and Proportionate.. It is clear what should happen at the end of the trial; that is, a full ACP should be followed. However, is this approach proportionate? Where consultation as required under 1b and 1c has been carried out and there have been no or insignificant objections compared to the original airspace design, it would be proportionate to move directly to a 1a Stage 5 ‘Decision’ as it is important that where benefit has been proven without any noted complaints or objections, then for airspace efficiency the change should be allowed with the understanding that the PIR will be more involved to ensure that the change is still working as intended. Therefore, guidance should be provided regarding a successful outcome that would not require a full 1a process to be commenced and followed. Without such guidance it will be too easy for the CAA to insist that the whole process is followed for fear of public challenge and the public needs to know the reasons ‘how’ and ‘when’ the process can be shortened. The inclusion of a couple of scenarios that show examples of a change that does not require a full process following a 1c and 1b process, and detailing what has to be completed could provide more certainty and clarity.

Tier 1: Spaceflights

17. On 21 February 2017 the Government published the Draft Spaceflight Bill. As the foreword to the draft Bill sets out, “This legislation will see the Department for Transport and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the UK Space Agency, the Civil Aviation Authority and the Health and Safety Executive working together to regulate and oversee commercial spaceflight operations in the UK.” Do you have any views on whether this process could be used or adapted to suit future airspace change proposals to enable spaceflights, as anticipated in the Draft Spaceflight Bill?

Spaceflight
I would expect that any ACP for a Spaceflight would be treated in exactly the same way as any other ACP, a Spaceflight will still require airspace that will impact on local populations (perhaps more so due to the potential number of spectators) and other users of the airspace, particularly if the Upper Air Routes are to be closed for periods of time. Although any proposal will be limited in time, there needs to be a method of providing adequate notification of activity and, potentially, change to the design.

Tier 2: Permanent and planned redistribution

18. The Government proposals talk about a Tier 2 change as one which is likely to alter traffic patterns below 7,000 feet over a populated area and which therefore could have a potential noise impact for those on the ground. The key requirement is that the air navigation service provider must demonstrate that it has assessed the noise impact of the proposed change and engaged with affected communities as appropriate. Which stages of the Tier 1a airspace change process do you think are necessary for a proposal categorised as a Tier 2 change? Please select all those which apply:

Please select all that apply
Stage 1 Define
Stage 2 Develop and assess
Stage 3 Consult
Stage 4 Update and submit
Stage 5 Decide
Stage 6 Implement
Stage 7 Post-implementation review
Ticked None of these
Don’t know
Tier 2 reasons
Page 12, Para 37 states “Tier 2 is a change to air traffic control operational procedures by an air navigation service provider causing a permanent and planned redistribution of air traffic, without changing the ‘notified’ airspace design.” It would be useful to explicitly clarify what is meant by ‘notified’ airspace design. If it means the outline of CAS, can the procedures within be changed without consultation, i.e. addition of GNSS procedures? If so, we suspect that it should state: “Tier 2 is a change to air traffic control operational procedures by an air navigation service provider causing a permanent and planned redistribution of air traffic, including changes to published Instrument Approach Procedures and departure routes, without changing the ‘notified’ airspace design.”

19. The CAA’s process for Tier 1a changes is scaled into ‘Levels’, based on the altitude-based priorities in the Government’s Air Navigation Guidance (i.e. where noise impacts are to be prioritised or considered alongside carbon emissions, a more demanding consultation is required). Could the future Tier 2 process also be scaled?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
Don't know
Tier 2 - scaled reasons
Tier 2 changes are not the same as airspace changes and should not follow the same proposed process as for Tier 1. Where changes are made above a certain level within controlled airspace that the ANSP has responsibility for, no consultation or notification should be required other than notification of a change. Within Class G uncontrolled airspace, other airspace users should be notified through NATMAC.

20. Are there any other comments that you would like to make about the CAA’s potential Tier 2 process?

Tier 2 - other comments
Tier 2 needs to be proportional. Population density and number of aircraft movements are just two matrices that could be used to decide whether a full or abbreviated process is to be adopted.

Tier 3: Other changes to air operations affecting noise impacts

21. To what extent does the draft best practice guidance on Tier 3 changes (other changes that may have a noise impact) meet the following criteria?

Comprehensible – it is clear to me what happens
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Transparent – the activities are explained well and will take place as publicly as possible
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion Ticked 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
Proportionate – the guidance strikes the right balance between detail as to what should happen, and flexibility to allow for different local circumstances
Please select one item
1: the guidance is good and meets this criterion 2: the guidance mostly meets this criterion Ticked 3: the guidance does not sufficiently meet this criterion
How to improve
Comprehensible and Transparent. This area could become extremely resource hungry, especially if the public ‘demands’ access to the data. The guidance must be very clear that this is not a platform such that the public can force change on the airport or to provide information to sate a member of the public’s desire for information, a Tier 3 change should be a simple information piece of facts. Where it is an ‘education piece’ or where there are common themes, such as technology changing such as an aircraft’s ability to follow more accurately the centreline of a route or why one end of the runway is used for take-offs or landings more frequently, the CAA could consider providing this information centrally rather than individual airports providing potentially slightly different information. For a Tier 3 change due to wind, there would have to be a significant shift in the dominant wind direction for details of why one runway is used more often than another to be provided to the public, it should not be a requirement to publish information about every runway change as this is normal business; there should be no such necessity for the provision of general knowledge type information to the public from an airport. A Tier 3 change should be all about a temporary repair to a runway that will mean more noise from another runway or a change in aircraft operators at the airport and/or destinations flown to such that routings will change; whilst the first is an airport-responsibility, the second really should be for the airline operator to provide information about as an aircraft operator would not take too kindly to an airport informing it what routes it can fly along and what destinations it can fly to – unless the airport concerned had a dominant market share, the potential outcome could be loss of business as the airline operator left the airport. Unless a change to patterns is known in advance such as the closure of a runway for maintenance, the policy should be clear that reporting on changes in the location of traffic flows is retrospective only as forecasting the likely impact on the future location of traffic flows resulting from multiple competing factors that change dynamically due to commercial, technical and operational factors would be unreliable, potentially misleading and resource intensive to create; moreover, the situation could potentially change back. Proportionate. The description of comparisons against historic data and ‘videos’ or provision of track-keeping data or routes flown is not possible unless the airport has the necessary technology and equipment in place to obtain this information from nor is it proportionate. The smaller regional airports are unlikely to own such equipment. Therefore, it is important to clarify the guidance such that the public do not believe that all airports have the technology and should provide the data and analysis. If the procession of and use of such equipment and information was to be mandated for all airports, the resource implication would be huge.

22. Where industry does not follow the CAA’s guidance in respect of Tier 3 changes, or where there is a clear breakdown of trust between an airport and its stakeholders, is it appropriate for the CAA to publicly draw attention to this?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
Don't know
CAA action on Tier 3 further detail
It is not necessarily the airport that is responsible for changes that could be ‘Tier 3’, Aircraft Operators change routes without any reference to the airport based on their business model. Where this becomes a significant change over the ground, perhaps the Aircraft Operator should be responsible for pre-briefing on planned changes with the airport only responsible for briefing on changes that have happened with input by the Aircraft Operator on the ‘why’ the change has occurred. Where we agree that it is appropriate for the CAA to intervene where the guidance provided by the CAA has not been followed, it is more difficult where that has been a breakdown in trust between an airport and its stakeholders. In such a case, the CAA must support industry where the guidance has been followed; the CAA cannot be seen to be simply stating that a breakdown of trust has occurred. The CAA must investigate and, for transparency, clearly explain that where procedure and guidance has been followed that Industry must be allowed to continue whilst also explaining to the public why industry has taken correct actions.

23. Considering the list of potential information proposed, would you suggest any additions which would help stakeholders, including communities, understand the impacts of Tier 3 changes and enhance transparency?

Additional information on Tier 3 impacts
The CAA should provide examples of Tier 3 changes that are beyond the control of the airport such as changes to normal weather patterns that mean that the normal runway configurations are different, airspace trials that change patterns, and the impact of Aircraft Operators routing decisions that could be based on changed demand for a destination, shortage of bed space, or impact or world events. Such examples together with a possible routing/over-flight impact would inform the public to expect that some Tier 3 changes could occur as part of normal activity.

24. In relation to mitigating the impacts of Tier 3 changes, our draft guidance says that the focus should be on exploring the options for mitigating the change through two-way dialogue, because of the local and often incremental nature of Tier 3 changes. Does the guidance need to give more detail?

Please select one item
Ticked Yes
No
Don't know
Tier 3 mitigation - reasons for Q24 answer
The draft guidance must aid transparency by stating what type of information and by whom the information has to be published. An airport can only be responsible for activity that they can control; any other activity outside of an airport’s control (such as Aircraft Operators routing their aircraft differently based on changed destinations) would have to be retrospective and based on what has occurred not necessarily the ‘why’. Aircraft Operators would be in a better position to describe changes that are known in advance and should have some responsibility placed on them to publish such information in advance or retrospectively.