Government releases study on noise pollution at Brussels airport

Government releases study on noise pollution at Brussels airport
© Brussels Airlines

The government has released an impact study on noise pollution near Brussels airport, La Libre and la Dernière Heure reported Friday evening. The impact study sketched out 14 scenarios that could relieve the distress for people living near the airport.

According to the document obtained by La Libre and la Dernière Heure, "the most efficient scenario in terms of the health of residents and economic viability for the airport would be to extend the runway 25L by 900 meters and concentrate departures there under specific conditions." €50 million would be needed for the project to take off.

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The study was done by aviation consultant Envisa and submitted Wednesday evening to the municipalities of the Walloon and Brussels Regions as well as associations for local residents.

Additional analysis

Modernising the planes operating from Brussels airport is another credible solution to address noise pollution. "It would undeniably have a positive impact on noise contours," said the authors behind the study, adding that "emissions from pollutants would also be reduced."

Other scenarios include exploring the flight restriction period and moving it till 07:00 from 06:00. However, moving the restriction period could have a significant economic impact on the airport.

The study also looked at abolishing cargo flights, new procedures for approaching runways for takeoff and landing, as well as focusing on departures from runway 25R to fly over less densely populated areas. Flying over runway 25R would significantly reduce noise pollution, but could also lengthen departure times, according to the study.

A previous assessment had been carried out by the government in 2020, but a new study was created after the first one was deemed insufficient. Envisa didn't completely redo the first version, but added additional analysis to it.

Mobility Minister Georges Gilkinet said that the different scenarios will be presented "to the other members of the federal majority and to the members of the consultation committee," according to Bruzz.

"This study allows for an assessment of the current situation and of the possible solutions, including the most disruptive and the most difficult for a consensus, which can be worked out afterwards," the Mobility cabinet said about the study.

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