Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport this week has stated its support for a new government initiative to halve all private flights. The airport claims that a halving of private aviation at the airport can have a reduction in noise.
A new government initiative
To meet environmental standards and to reduce the amount of noise around Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport, the Dutch government has proposed a new law that will see half of all private flights allowed into Schiphol. The governing body of Netherlands’ largest airport also supports this.
Last year, in 2022, 22,372 private aviation flights arrived in Amsterdam Schiphol, also the home of KLM. Under this new government policy, there should be no more than 11,500 private aviation flights arriving at the airport. It’s reported also that the governing body of Amsterdam’s Schiphol wants to give private aviation 2.5% of its annual flight movements. This percentage is much lower than what it is currently.
This autumn, the Dutch government will implement a new restriction on noise at the airport. To adhere to this new restriction, the government proposed the reduction of private flights. The flag carrier of the Netherlands, KLM, supports this initiative. However, it continues to fight plans to ax capacity at Schiphol, which would see its scheduled hurt.
Airline CEO Marjan Rintel told Dutch media:
“Small aviation is responsible for 20 percent of the noise nuisance at Schiphol.”
However, there are those who are against the idea of the halving flights. A trade association representing private aviation in The Netherlands, EBAA, said:
“The corporate aviation industry is an important engine and provides 9,000 jobs in the sector and 2 billion euros [$2.1bn] per year in economic growth in the Netherlands. This sector, in particular, has a good reputation for innovation and investment. The aircraft in the sector are quieter and more sustainable than those of regular aviation because they are often smaller and newer.”
Private regional flights
According to Dutch media outlet RTL Nieuws, their research shows that the majority of the flights arriving in Amsterdam Schiphol aren’t regional. They claim that one in ten flights come from less than 200km away from the airport. The majority of which aren’t even carrying passengers. Rather, repositioning flights so that the aircraft is closer to the customer scheduled to fly on the aircraft.
Ironically, the media outlet claims that the Dutch Government’s private jet also participates in this practice of flying without passengers. A study by CE Delft shows that PH-GOV, a government-owned Boeing 737-700BBJ used for flying government ministers, regularly flies between Rotterdam and Amsterdam. The report goes further and claims that each trip burns around 1,000 liters of kerosene and releases fumes into the environment.
According to the same report, commissioned by the activist group Greenpeace, claim that private flights are, on average, five to seven times more damaging to the environment than a commercial flight flown by an airline carrying hundreds of passengers.
A green airport
Amsterdam Schiphol Airport currently has a goal of becoming carbon neutral by the year 2050. It has taken a number of groundbreaking steps to achieve this innovative goal. One such step is the introduction of TaxiBot. This clever idea is quite simple. When an aircraft wants to pushback and taxi, a tug, which is 100% electric, will pull the aircraft to the runway threshold, where it will then turn on its engines – saving fuel, reducing emissions, and heavily reducing the amount of noise at the airport.
Photo: Schiphol Airport
Finally, another measure taken by the airport is the use of renewable batteries to power it’s Ground Power Unit (GPU) for parked aircraft. American company ESS Inc. is helping Schiphol to achieve this and Schiphol will be using their innovative and green batteries.
What do you think about the reduction of private aviation at Schiphol? Do you think it’s a good idea? Let us know in the comments below.