Airspace modernisation will benefit a wide range of stakeholders in many different ways. This will include, passengers, airspace users, airports, air navigation service providers, companies that rely on air transport to conduct their business and communities that may be affected by aircraft noise.
For passengers - the benefits of airspace modernisation are clear. Fewer flight delays and service disruptions at short notice will save time and improve the passenger experience. A more efficient airspace will increase capacity while continuing to improve current high safety standards, leading to better value, including consistent quality of service, and more choice.
For aircraft operators - the airspace structure is a key determinant of costs, punctuality and environmental performance. More direct and efficient flightpaths will mean lower costs for operators because they will save on fuel and be able to enhance the utilisation of their aircraft. Airspace modernisation is expected to improve access to airspace for General Aviation, by enabling greater integration (rather than segregation) of different airspace user groups. The same is true for new airspace users such as drones and spacecraft.
For airports - the sharing of accurate flight information about traffic using our airspace is expected to improve runway throughput and the resilience. Additional airspace capacity will provide airports with the scope to develop their operations in line with their business plans (subject to planning considerations). Enhanced technology combined with updated airspace design enables safe, expeditious and efficient management of increased traffic.
For the UK economy - efficiency and enhanced global connections and emerging aviation technologies can help drive growth.
For communities - airspace modernisation offers some environmental improvements because aircraft can climb sooner, descend more quietly and navigate more accurately around populated centres. In some areas, the increase in traffic can lead to an increase in noise, or the concentration of traffic can concentrate noise over a smaller area, which can reduce the areas in which noise is heard and offer the opportunity for respite routes. This means that not every community will benefit, so it is important that noise is managed as well as possible, in adherence to government policy. Airports should also consider whether they can develop airspace change proposals to reduce noise, i.e. to reduce the total adverse health effects of noise. Where aircraft are able to follow more fuel-efficient routes, wider society will also benefit because fewer CO2 emissions will reduce greenhouse-gas impacts.
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