Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Hon. Catherine King MP has formally refused to meet with Brisbane Flight Path Community Alliance, abandoning communities suffering from unsustainable flight path noise.
Following the election of the Albanese government, BFPCA wrote to Minister King in November 2022 requesting a meeting. BFPCA Chairperson, Prof. Marcus Foth, said the organisation had received a reply only on 8 February 2023 rejecting the request for a meeting despite Minister King’s recent visit to Brisbane to tour Brisbane’s Cross River Rail construction sites.
“It’s clear now that Brisbane families and communities that are suffering daily with health-destroying levels of aircraft noise have been hung out to dry by Minister King and the Albanese government,” Prof. Foth said.
“Our community is not unreasonable. We understand that aviation is key to the economic future of Brisbane, Queensland and Australia. However, we also know that the current operations and flight paths in Brisbane go against what was promised in the airport’s Environmental Impact Statement, against what the community was told would happen and that people’s health and wellbeing are suffering,” he said.
“We wanted to meet with the Minister to demonstrate the extent of the problem and show that we are reasonable in our requests for the problems to be addressed – we only want what Sydney already has: a flight cap and curfew.”
Many airports around the world operate profitably and efficiently with night-time curfews to minimise noise disturbance for the surrounding residential areas, including London, New York, Paris, Frankfurt, Tokyo, and Los Angeles. In Australia, this includes Adelaide, Essendon, Gold Coast, and Sydney Airports.
“We know that airports can operate profitably even with the introduction of flight caps and curfews, making them much better corporate citizens of their host city communities,” Prof. Foth said. “We can only guess at the reasons why Minister King has declined to meet with the affected communities here in Brisbane – but we are exceptionally disappointed we’ve been abandoned, especially considering Prime Minister Albanese’s emotive words during his maiden speech to parliament on 6th May 1996 about his own Grayndler electorate that faced aircraft noise from Sydney Airport in the ‘90s. Where is that same level of compassion and care for residents of Brisbane?”
“We continue to be ready to work constructively with all levels of government and parties of all colours to address the injustice we’ve had inflicted on us in Brisbane from aircraft noise,” Prof. Foth said. “As we said in our letter to Minister King, we’re also happy to come to her if she’ll have us,” he said. “In the meantime, being continually ignored means we will have to resort to other measures, like protests.”
Noise affected residents can donate to BFPCA’s Brisbane Flight Path Noise Fighting Fund at bfpca.org.au/donate
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BFPCA Letter to Minister King, 23 Nov 2022 >
Response from the Office of Minister King, 08 Feb 2023 >
With the launch of Brisbane Airport’s New Parallel Runway on 12 July 2020 came a new airspace design and flight paths that concentrate aircraft noise over densely populated residential areas. Brisbane Airport and Airservices Australia sold this project to Brisbane communities suggesting the New Parallel Runway will enable them to prioritise “over water” operations. The CEO Gert-Jan de Graaff is on the record saying, “The net effect of aircraft flying over the city will decrease.”
Brisbane families and communities are suffering from excessive noise pollution and associated health and related impacts from Brisbane Airport’s new flight paths launched in July 2020. The Aircraft Noise Ombudsman (ANO), the Brisbane Airport PIR Advisory Forum (BAPAF) and UK-based consultants TRAX International have all confirmed that Brisbane communities were misled using flawed noise modelling, deceiving community engagement, and offering inadequate noise abatements.
The Brisbane Flight Path Community Alliance (BFPCA) has come together to fight back on behalf of all Brisbane families and communities experiencing this noise pollution.
For more information about BFPCA visit bfpca.org.au