ASA HAVE UNDERESTIMATED OUR COMMUNITY

CASA need to approve the proposed flight paths and until then, they remain PROPOSED. The flight paths were not ‘approved’ in the EIS, they were concept drawings. Nor was there targeted community consultation about proposed or concept flight paths in 2014. These flight paths are not ‘approved’ until the Office of Airspace Regulation declares them so, irrespective of the time ASA has spent developing them and trying to justify them.

There was no reason ASA couldn’t have looked at alternative routes to find a flight path solution that would provide the least impact on communities and the environment. They simply left it too late to meet project milestones and went for what they thought would be a path of least resistance, particularly when they made no effort to inform negatively impacted communities.

ASA just did not want to undertake any further environmental, social or noise impact assessments.

Figure 2 in the TEIA shows an existing flight path to the west. But apparently no western approach can now be considered despite the fact that aircraft track to the west already. In addition, BSOU2 waypoint is to the west. AIRCRAFT FLY WEST ALREADY AND THE MOST NORTHERLY PROPOSED ROUTE IS TO THE WEST.

Alternatives have always existed and still do, but a systemic failure of responsibility to protect and safeguard our ‘community of interest’ has been set aside, in pursuit of a rush job to meet a deadline prescribed by……..?

It is ASA’s decision to be constrained to the EIS concepts. Why?

 

CONSIDERATION OF FEEDBACK REPORT RELEASED

The final ASA feedback report is now available and it is no surprise to see that the final design has not been shaped by feedback submitted through the ‘consultation’ process. In fact, the final flight path over Yandina Creek, Verrierdale and Weyba Downs is now wider and therefore worse for those residents.

As mentioned previously, at the meeting with ASA and other stakeholders on Friday the 5th July, only paths that were WITHIN THE EIS CONCEPT CORRIDORS would be considered i.e. no western route.

Designing approach and departure procedures is a complex process. It takes time. ASA have been busy finalising these necessary technical procedures with no intention of incorporating feedback or listening in any genuine way to the concerns of affected communities.

‘These flight paths are a done deal’ – ASA and SCC told us that in April.

Revised routes now go directly over Teewah, Lake Weyba, Lake Cooroibah, Tinbeerwah with the most heavily impacted communities being at Yandina Creek and Verrierdale. All areas north from Yandina Creek can expect overflights of aircraft at far less than 5000ft. 

ASA state their ‘findings’ were consistent with the EIS, but the EIS does not include impact assessment results for any of the myriad of environmental reserves, lakes, rivers and wetlands scattered through our coastal and hinterland areas. ‘Identification’ is not the same as ‘assessment.’

Click on the link to view the report:

https://engage.airservicesaustralia.com/sunshine-coast-airport-airspace-changes-runway-1331

‘Higher altitudes’ are mentioned a couple of times throughout the report – no details on actualaltitudes. There is an interactive tool on the Airservices web portal where you can see if you are ‘affected’ by the flight paths. REMEMBER the flight paths shown are only 1km wide. Noise travels much further. Allow at least 3km for arrivals and 6km for departures either side of the centre line of flight paths indicated. Dispersion of noise must be taken into account to fully understand noise impacts – topography and altitude and meteorological factors will have an effect on how far sound will travel.

Aircraft will also deviate from the flight paths shown particularly on the RNAV approaches crossing the coast at Teewah and over hinterland areas.

https://engage.airservicesaustralia.com/

 

The community consultation was flawed. It was not 6 weeks long. Would you have been aware of the information sessions if the community had not raised awareness of its own volition?

‘Targeted’ advertising in six local papers were apparently supposed to catch the eye of residents and inform them of the information sessions. Yet the distribution areas of selected newspapers such as the Caloundra Weekly and the Buderim Chronicle are 26km – to 55km away from impacted areas. Negatively impacted communities of interest who were selected by ASA for targeted consultation were:

 

Black Mountain           Lake MacDonald         Cooran            Pinbarren        Cooroibah       Pomona            Cooroy             Ridgewood      Cooroy

Mountain                    Ringtail Creek             Doonan            Tewantin         Tinbeerwah

 

There is no clarity on how ASA planned to target more remote communities such as Teewah, who now effectively have a junction of two flight paths overhead.

Coastal communities were not targeted for consultation at all, despite changes to the coastal flight paths, both to the north and south of the Noosa area.

The noise modelling is questionable and the TEIA is not a robust document in assessing impacts of noise and emissions on the community or the environment, there is no evidence of rigorous independent evaluation of this document.

 

ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS

According to ASA, assessment of impacts on the environment can clearly be regarded as complete and substantive when, after doing an internet search, the following conclusion, (post extensive analysis) is drawn:

Implementation of these flight path proposals will see increased overflight of Lake Weyba, Noosa National Park and a number of other parks and wetlands.

Does an online search supported by a statement of literal fact constitute a full and comprehensive environmental impact assessment?

ASA have conducted an online search and identified that the implementation of their flight path designs will see overflight of Lake Weyba, Noosa National Park and a number of other parks and wetlands. Does an online search constitute ‘impact assessment’?

Impact information presented to the public is not scientifically robust, based on any kind of meaningful consultation and is presented in a series of poorly constructed documents which still lack a rationale for these flight path proposals.

You can view the TEIA fact sheet here:

http://www.airservicesaustralia.com/wp-content/uploads/TEIA-Fact-Sheet-June-2019.pdf

And in case you missed it, here’s the disclaimer from GHD (on the inside cover of the TEIA Part 1). GHD consultants prepared the TEIA. They were also involved in the compilation of the 2014 EIS.

Consultants, engaged by SCC, supplied information for the EIS on which ASA and GHD have now based their reports and decisions.

 SO, WHAT’S THE RUSH?

It is noted that in last year’s Annual Report (2017-2018) published in November 2018, Mayor Jamieson and CEO Michael Whittaker state that runway 13/31 is due to be completed and operational in December 2020.

An Airspace Change Proposal (ACP) lodgement date of 70 days prior to the next twice-yearly lodgement date for airspace change to CASA, May 2020,  would see enough time for the approval process to be undertaken by CASA and still meet flight path publication ‘effective dates’ prior to runway commissioning in December 2020. Why the rush to get this done six month early?

STATEMENT OF EXPECTATIONS

Follow the link below to view the Statement of Expectations by Darren Chester MP, which was referenced in the Consideration of Feedback Report.  A new statement is currently being prepared. Perhaps you would like to input by sending your feedback to the current Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, the Hon. Michael McCormack.  How does ASA’s compliance with this statement rate with you?

https://www.legislation.gov.au/Details/F2017L00526

 

“Airservices should have a code of conduct and values consistent with excellence in the public sector”

 

SOCIAL IMPACT ANALYSIS

The value of any social impact analysis has to be questioned if those impacted have never been identified, contacted or surveyed by ASA or asked to provide input of any kind.

How can social impact be measured through an internet search? 

It seems Airservices didn’t actually know people lived under the proposed flight paths – Figure 32 on page 60 of the TEIA shows Verrierdale, Weyba Downs, Peregian Beach, North Arm and Yandina Creek as ‘Rural Activity’ rather than ‘Rural Residential’. 

The map does not extend to areas north to Tinbeerwah – the communities of Teewah and Cootharabah are cut off the map. 

By ASA’s own admission, residents in coastal areas were not ‘consulted’

 

Why not?

 

Click on the link below to view the TEIA Part 1

http://www.airservicesaustralia.com/wp-content/uploads/Airservices-proposed-change-to-flight-paths-at-Sunshine-Coast-Airport-TEIA-Part-1-March-2019-1-1.pdf

  

ASA QUERIES

If you have a query about the content of the report please contact ASA before 26 July – don’t forget to Cc in the ANO ano@ano.gov.au

Community Engagement Airservices (communityengagement@airservicesaustralia.com)

We’d like to hear from you, if you have received a response to any queries or questions you included in your submission sent to ASA prior to the closure of the feedback period in April.

We are preparing further submission guidelines which we will send out in the next few days.

We encourage you to forward a copy of your submissions to admin@verrierdaleresdients.org, they have offered to compile an independent catalogue of feedback for transparency.