Managing Aircraft Noise
The Airport Authority submitted a new five-year Noise Management Plan to Transport Canada in 2014, which sets the framework for our Noise Management Program. Working closely with the community, government and industry stakeholders, the Airport Authority identified ten focus areas and corresponding initiatives that aim to manage noise and community expectations, while recognizing the need for continued operations.
Our annual community survey of Metro Vancouver residents showed that 86 per cent of respondents reported not being annoyed by aircraft noise, down slightly from 88 per cent in 2013. We received 1,754 noise complaints in 2014—a 35 per cent increase from 2013. However, the number of individuals who registered a complaint decreased, from 279 in 2013 to 278 in 2014, and 67 per cent of 2014’s complaints came from three individuals.
While passenger numbers increased in 2014, the number of aircraft runway take-offs and landings increased at a slower rate than previous years—down from a high of 279,000 in 2008. This reflects the improved efficiency of aircrafts, which can hold greater numbers of passengers and, due to technological advances, produce less noise.
GROUND RUN-UP ENCLOSURE
2014 marked the third full year of operations for our Ground Run-Up Enclosure (GRE). The GRE—the first of its kind in Canada—accommodated around 900 run-ups in 2014, accounting for more than 35 per cent of total run-ups and more than 85 per cent of full power-ups performed by operators located on the south side of the airport. In 2014, there were 18 noise concerns related to run-ups, a 22 per cent decrease from the previous year.
FLY QUIET AWARDS
In 2005, YVR introduced the Fly Quiet Awards to raise awareness of noise issues among operators. This annual award is given to operators with the lowest departure noise levels as measured by our Noise Monitoring & Flight Tracking System across three classes: wide body, narrow body and propeller. The winners of the Fly Quiet Awards in 2013 were: Air Canada Jazz (propeller), US Airways (narrow body) and China Southern (wide body).