News


Palo Alto airport supplier to warn of lead emissions

Settlement: Nearby residents should receive notification of lead exposure from plane fuel

Residents and businesses near the Palo Alto Municipal Airport should be getting notifications about the use of leaded aviation gas at the airport, according to a legal settlement between an environmental-advocacy group and 30 suppliers of lead-containing aviation gas, including the local airport.

Aviation-fuel retailers must post signage regarding the danger of lead and warn residents within 1 kilometer (two-thirds of a mile) of the airport by letter or hand-delivered door hanger as part of the settlement. That includes a portion of East Palo Alto, businesses along the east end of Embarcadero Road and part of the Palo Alto Baylands Nature Preserve.

Palo Alto Airport fixed-base operator Rossi Aircraft Inc. is a signatory to the settlement, but the company's owner did not return requests for comment about plans to notify the public.

The Oakland-based Center for Environmental Health filed a lawsuit against the aviation-gas ("avgas") suppliers in October 2011 for allegedly failing to comply with California's Proposition 65.

Lead, which is added to aviation fuel to boost octane and improve performance in piston-engine aircraft, is linked to miscarriage, low birth weight and premature birth. It can cause increased heart and respiratory diseases, neurological disturbances, convulsions, muscle weakness, paralysis and cancer, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the United Nations Environmental Programme.

But airport officials are quick to point out that lead particles are heavy and tend to drop near the site of takeoff or where planes are gearing up for flight. A 2011 Duke University study supports that assertion, noting that there was little increase in air lead from background levels beyond 1,500 meters.

The Duke study did find "a significant association between potential exposure to lead emissions from avgas and blood levels in children," however. Children living within 1 kilometer of airports had a 4.4 percent higher blood lead level compared to other children, with children living within 500 meters most greatly affected. The study was adjusted for other sources of lead in the children's environments, such as peeling lead-based paint.

But lead from avgas is minor compared to other sources such as lead-based paint from older buildings, leached lead from water pipes, and consumer products and toys manufactured in countries with less-stringent regulations, the researchers said.

In wildlife, and particularly in birds, lead shot ingestion and consuming contaminated fish are the prevailing sources of lead poisoning.

A June 2013 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) preliminary report on airport lead emissions found that Palo Alto's three-month, average lead concentration in the air was 0.12 micrograms per cubic meter -- just below the EPA's National Ambient Air Quality Standard of 0.15 micrograms per cubic meter. (The San Carlos Airport exceeded the federal standard with a value of 0.33 micrograms, according to the report.)

The EPA study could play a role in policy changes related to leaded avgas. The agency is currently studying whether lead emissions from avgas endangers the public. A final determination is expected in mid-2015.

Local studies of leaded avgas pollution appear to be nonexistent. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District, which monitors pollutants, hasn't monitored for atmospheric lead for years. Monitoring pretty much stopped when lead ceased being added to automobile gasoline, which was considered the greatest source of lead in air, a spokesperson said.

Wildlife studies around San Francisco Bay have focused mainly on lead sources from ammunition.

Ralph Britton, president of the Palo Alto Airport Association, said he recognizes the risks of leaded fuel and talked about the economic challenges of developing alternative fuel.

"No one thinks using leaded fuel indefinitely is a good idea, but there is no viable alternative at the moment," he said. "That does not mean that it is unimportant to solve this problem, however. Because of the small demand, oil companies have little or no economic incentive to develop an alternative to processes already in place. In time, however, unleaded aviation gasoline will be available, but given the lack of economic incentive it will take some years," he said.

Comments

4 people like this
Posted by Midtown
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 8, 2015 at 11:01 am

It is probably more important to get the carbon out of our avgas!


11 people like this
Posted by mauricio
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 8, 2015 at 4:40 pm

If studies of the horrific health damage that unleaded fuel particulates cause, particularly to those who live near the Palo Alto airport, there would be an outcry to close it down, and it would eventually be closed down. That being said, there is no danger that such a studies would ever received wide circulation, since the flying lobby would make certain that such studies are never published.


Like this comment
Posted by pay attention
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 8, 2015 at 6:27 pm

Hey Mauricio, you didn't read the whole article. Especially this part: "lead from avgas is minor compared to other sources". If you really want to do something about the problem, go after the problem instead of red herrings.


13 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Addison School
on Feb 8, 2015 at 10:39 pm


"No one thinks using leaded fuel indefinitely is a good idea, but there is no viable alternative at the moment"...

Hey, I just thought of a viable alternative: NOT using leaded fuel! After all, most of these flights are just for leisure. Go skydiving instead.


3 people like this
Posted by mauricio
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 9, 2015 at 7:28 am

@pay attention-if birth defects, cancer, soil, water, plant air contamination, as well as a myriad of other very serious health issues is minor in your eyes, then, yes, leaded fuel sprayed on residential areas from low attitude is a minor problem.


2 people like this
Posted by Janice
a resident of Downtown North
on Feb 9, 2015 at 9:18 am

@mauricio: Why would "unleaded fuel particulates" be worse near the Palo Alto Airport than near 101 where there are vehicles burning far more unleaded gas?


5 people like this
Posted by Brian
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Feb 9, 2015 at 10:47 am

What is the value of notifying residents if they don't have an option to do anything about it? Just because it satisfies a law is lame. They should be compensated in some way for increased exposure without consent. The same excuses for not using unleaded fuel were presented when they eliminated it from autos fuel 40+ years ago. They can make the same changes in aircraft also. Make modification mandatory during a scheduled maintenance within a time frame and eliminate the exposure and environmental contamination.


6 people like this
Posted by Bill
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 9, 2015 at 10:57 am

Lead paint has been banned in the US since 1978. Lead based solder for pipes carrying drinking water has been banned since 1986. Lead in toys has been also banned for years.

The City of Palo Alto operates an airport that sells and operates with avation gas that contains lead. There's no date whatsoever for replacing lead based fuels. So, while the largest sources will eventually get aged out as houses and apartments get rebuilt, the 12,000 flight operations a month will continue to spew lead over densely populated areas adjacent to the airport for years to come.The vast majority of these flights aren't necessary. The flights from PAO are simply folks using the airport for training and or recreation. Unlike Highway 101 which supports thousands of commuters an hour, the airport could be shutdown with little economic impact to the City or the surrounding area.

So, although airport fanatics would be upset, it seems like closing the airport or restricting flight operations would be better for everybody.


2 people like this
Posted by CherylPetro
a resident of another community
on Feb 9, 2015 at 11:39 am

and the influx of airplane traffic and airlines handled by SFO, is causing nearby residents to have health issues from the barrage! Of course, the airport is Federally protected, just to add that extra layer of impossibility to get them to act decently!


4 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Feb 9, 2015 at 11:42 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Many of the flights at PAO are turbine powered aircraft which already use unleaded Jet A fuel.
Some of the other PAO aircraft have already been certified to use automobile gas which is unleaded.
The rest will transition to unleaded AvGas as soon as it is available:
"The FAA's request for fuel producers to submit unleaded avgas formulations to replace 100LL closed July 1st, 2014. The FAA has selected four fuels; one each from Shell and TOTAL, and two from Swift Fuels. The FAA will now begin working with the producers to define the formulations to be submitted to the FAA for the Phase 1 test program. The Phase 1 laboratory and rig test program is anticipated to take approximately one year, at which point the FAA will evaluate the fuels for continued participation in Phase 2 test of the test program. Two or three of the Phase 1 fuels will be selected for participation in the Phase 2 engine and aircraft test program. The Phase 2 engine and aircraft test program is expected to take approximately two years, and will generate data that can be used to obtain an ASTM Production Specification for the fuels, and to certify most of the existing fleet to operate on these fuels."


11 people like this
Posted by Peter Wesselius
a resident of another community
on Feb 9, 2015 at 11:44 am

This article has an important factual inaccuracy: "But lead from avgas is minor compared to other sources"

I quote the Chicago Tribune:
"As pollution from other sources has sharply declined, the general aviation fleet of 167,000 aircraft has become the nation's top source of airborne lead, emitting nearly 500 tons a year, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency."

The direct source is from the "Lead Emissions from the Use of Leaded Aviation Gasoline in the United States" technical support document available through epa.gov. Document reference EPA420-R-08-020

Please correct your article.


13 people like this
Posted by PA citizen
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 9, 2015 at 11:47 am

Leaded fuel is one health issue. The constant noise of airplanes, day and night, is another one. In Palo Alto and vicinity, we are "clobbered" by SFO plane traffic and by traffic from other airports as well. It is time for the Palo Alto community to do something about this.

Join our group in speaking up and lobbying our local politicians to solve the problem:
Web Link

File a complaint with the San Francisco Airport when the noise is egregious. You can do so online at:
Web Link


Like this comment
Posted by jm
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 9, 2015 at 12:27 pm

Good reason not for the city to restrict the number of flights that use leaded fuel until all these aircraft use lead free fuel. Or at a minimum not allow any expansion of these flights. Thank you Peter Carpenter for the additional information about this topic.


3 people like this
Posted by mauricio
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 9, 2015 at 1:06 pm

Janice, my error. I meant leaded fuel of course, not unleaded fuel. The fuel cars are burning on 101 is unleaded.

The city of Palo Alto should restrict flights out of PAO to aircrafts using unleaded fuel only. If all the aircrafts operating out of PAO use only leaded fuel, then the airport should be shut down, which is the right thing to do anyway. General aviation airports should not be located in the midst of densely populated areas, certainly not airports that allow leaded fuel aircrafts.


Like this comment
Posted by SteveU
a resident of Barron Park
on Feb 9, 2015 at 1:24 pm

SteveU is a registered user.

Lead is natural and exists in quantity
(Tetra ethyl lead is not)

AVGAS is a Gasoline and needs help to prevent knock under the wide-wide range of conditions that aircraft operate under

Jet Fuel is Kerosene. No anti-knock treatment is needed

The amount of lead from the few aircraft that operate is nothing when compared to the Automobile, even in 'Low Lead' gas era.

Roman Water pipes WERE lead. If it were as horridly devastating as some make it into, the species (man) would be extinct.

By all means, avoid lead when possible, but don't go overboard


2 people like this
Posted by CrescentParkAnon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 9, 2015 at 2:13 pm

Yeah, what I have been saying for a long time.

Palo Alto makes a big show of a green image, and even is now going to
build a big ostentatious bridge across 101 to the Baylands, all the while
still using the Bay like cities have for many decades as a dump.

Airplane fuel with lead in it.

Go to the Baylands and see if you can carry on a conversation with
someone or even yourself with the planes flying over taking off or
landing - they are way too loud for a city that really takes any of this
seriously.

And what all is coming out of our waste treatment plant as well.
Lots of us go out of the Baylands for walking, running, hiking, and
we have no idea what we are being exposed to.

How about some real transparency City of Palo Alto?


6 people like this
Posted by CrescentParkAnon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 9, 2015 at 2:20 pm

>> "No one thinks using leaded fuel indefinitely is a good idea, but there is no viable alternative at the moment,"
[Portion removed.] If this was spraying lead right in the faces gf growing kids it would be shut down in a second, but because it is out of sight, out of mind, and we have a history of ignoring it, it just continues.

The airport and its users have had a history of lying, playing down and ridiculing people who are concerned about these issues to the point that any chance I get I try to tell people if we care enough and make enough noise we can get his poison distrbution system shut down and develop a really green Palo Alto waterfront. What a novel idea.

Has anyone from the city gone around and taken samples of the soil out in the Baylands and tested it for lead and other chemicals? If not, can we get a wide sample done publically and report it to the whole city?


3 people like this
Posted by Groundling
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 9, 2015 at 2:39 pm

I wholly agree with Bill's comments above. As Palo Alto City Council talks about priorities for a healthy community and discusses goals of carbon neutrality, and sustainability, one has to question how Palo Alto Airport operations figure into any of these discussions. Air travel is inherently bad for the environment, energy inefficient, and a huge contributor to climate change-- and most of air travel is discretionary. Rules that were put in place by the FAA when fewer planes were in the skies are now grossly insufficient for controlling the numbers GA planes, private turbo props, and commercial jets flying routes over densely populated regions.

Is the general public aware of how many of the 200,000 operations at 'our' airport each year are simply flying school students having fun, and hobbyist pilots maintaining their licenses? Training flights make loops over EPA, the Baylands, and PA neighborhoods, for hours on end. When traffic is heavy at PAO (due to all the training activity), arrivals and departures are sent over our PA neighborhoods to 'fly safely' while spewing leaded gas overhead. There are 7 flying clubs and schools out there--who are all these people who think flying a plane is a necessary part of life? Do we really want and need all those private planes overhead?

While on the subject of the business of flight schools, parents, I beg you to consider the environmental consequences of offering your teenager flying lessons. What message does that send them? Instead, buy them a really nice bicycle and encourage them to find meaningful physical and creative outlets. If they want to become a commercial or military pilot they can do that as an adult and get trained in a less populated, environmentally sensitive area.

Local aviation enthusiasts will assert that PA airport is necessary for producing the next generation of commercial pilots. I don't believe we have evidence that it is necessary or wise to locate training airports next to residential communities. What percentage of students who buzz around up there go on to be commercial pilots? And if they had to train elsewhere, not over densely populated areas, would they not reach their goal? As for Medivac and organ transport, what are those numbers, really? What percentage of the 200,000 operations per year? I could live with those flights, knowing a life is being saved, just as when we hear ambulances and fire engines.

The right of one person to fly for fun should not supersede the rights of everyone on the ground. It is grossly unjust that one person who wants the 'fun' of flying can negatively impact the quiet enjoyment of thousands in their yards, homes, and parks, with no accountability. There is no real policing of the class of airspace immediately over our homes, and no fines for pilots who decide to not follow the recommended flight practices. It is the Wild West up there, and a community that values healthy living, the outdoors, and a peaceful environment down here.

Regarding lead contamination from Avgas, how does testing air samples close to the airport prove there are no health effects or environmental consequences of all those discretionary flights? How about testing the mud in the estuaries and looking for bioaccumulated lead in the invertebrates on the ground, the crustaceans, the amphibians, fish, and birds? Something (like Science) tells me we have insufficient data on whether the lead from Avgas is of no consequence to the environment, or humans living under the flight paths.

And what about those who can't bear to give up flying small planes? They fly for fun, or to have lunch with a client, or attend a meeting that others will tune in to digitally. Perhaps when flying over all the people they can't see, or hear, or care about, the world looks like their oyster and earthly concerns don't apply to them at all. Well, to those I say, is this necessity or just a self-indulgent luxury?


1 person likes this
Posted by curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Feb 9, 2015 at 3:08 pm

"Many of the flights at PAO are turbine powered aircraft which already use unleaded Jet A fuel."

That's news to me and every other objective ground observer. What do you mean by "many"? 1%? 2%?

"Some of the other PAO aircraft have already been certified to use automobile gas which is unleaded."

Why not all of them? Why hasn't aircraft engine technology advanced since the 1950s?


1 person likes this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Feb 9, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Always liked that file-photo of plane flying into transmission lines.

Any theories why Palo Alto measures 0.12 micrograms per cubic meter while San Carlos measures 0.33 micrograms?


Like this comment
Posted by Surf Air?
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 9, 2015 at 3:36 pm

musical,

"Any theories why Palo Alto measures 0.12 micrograms per cubic meter while San Carlos measures 0.33 micrograms?"

I'll throw out a theory - Surf Air


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Feb 9, 2015 at 3:50 pm

Surf Air burns jet fuel.


Like this comment
Posted by Midtowner
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 9, 2015 at 4:23 pm

An interesting website with facts about aircraft pollution due to airplanes.
Web Link

It's an industry in the sky and now PA owns its own, right next to a golf course and 'restored' wetlands park.

Perhaps PA can deny parking and landing rights to planes that burn dirty fuel?


Like this comment
Posted by Surf Air?
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 9, 2015 at 4:40 pm

musical,

i guess that means jet fuel is not leaded? so why can't all planes use jet fuel?




2 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 9, 2015 at 6:03 pm

The technology exists to solve the lead problem, but the aviation community needs to stop pretending this problem doesn't exist. The biggest impediment to solving the lead problem is 1950's thinking, and the culture of mendacity that is prevalent in the aviation community.

The only reason we are still troubled by leaded-avgas is because the FAA refused to phase it out 40 years ago, when it was phased out of automotive gas.

Unleaded mogas has been FAA approved for aircraft since the 1980s, and everyone in the aviation community (including Ralph Britton), knows it.


"Mogas: The Great Missed Opportunity"
AVWeb ~ October 6, 2013 Web Link

"Leaded Fuel Is a Thing of the Past—Unless You Fly a Private Plane"
Mother Jones ~ January 3, 2013 Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by Wayne Martin
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Feb 9, 2015 at 6:59 pm

As much as I am opposed to the City of Palo Alto's owning/operating this airport--this seems like a non-problem unless someone (like the City) were to actually monitor the air/water/soil within a mile, or two, of the airport and actually find lead in quantities that are actually harmful.

For all of its constant, and shrill, efforts to promote "environmentalism", the City seems to be very non-pro-active when it comes to actually monitoring various pollutants, like noise, and in this case, lead, associated with the airport.

At the very minimum, the City should be able to provide accurate numbers about the number of gallons of avgas sold/used by aircraft using the airport, and from those numbers, determine just how much lead is being relased by the planes being powered by that gas.

Without that sort of data--this is just another tempest in a tea pot.


2 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 9, 2015 at 7:13 pm

The EPA has been studying lead emissions at general aviation airports, and PAO is not fair very well:

0.33 ug/m^3 (San Carlos, CA)
0.17 ug/m^3 (McClelland, CA)
0.12 ug/m^3 (Palo Alto, CA)
0.09 ug/m^3 (Reid-Hillview, CA)
0.07 ug/m^3 (Gillespie, CA)
0.07 ug/m^3 (Merril, AK)
0.06 ug/m^3 (Van Nuys, CA)
0.06 ug/m^3 (Auburn, WA)
0.04 ug/m^3 (Deer Valley, AZ)
0.03 ug/m^3 (Brookhaven, NY)
0.03 ug/m^3 (Stinson, TX)
0.02 ug/m^3 (Harvey, WA)
0.01 ug/m^3 (Republic, NY)

At 0.12 ug/m^3 Palo Alto Airport is just below the EPA's limit of 0.15 ug/m^3. Even a small increase in activity at PAO could push PAO over the limit.

How can Palo Alto even consider expanding the airport, or encouraging people (especially kids) to congregate there, given how close the airport already is to the EPA limit?


EPA Airport Lead Monitoring Program Update: Web Link


1 person likes this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Feb 9, 2015 at 7:38 pm

@Wayne Martin

You know the reason the city hasn't gotten the data, and won't, as well as anyone: Don't ask the question if you don't want the answer.

Our fair city has acquired a shiny new toy of its very own. General knowledge that it is spewing a deadly toxin would be quite inconvenient.


2 people like this
Posted by Wayne Martin
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Feb 9, 2015 at 8:10 pm

> Don't ask the question if you don't want the answer.

Thanks for putting words in my mouth.

As to the data listed about, I don't find the list particularly helpful, because:

1) Airborne distribution of the lead will result in a non-uniform deposition, based on prevailing wind directions.
2) There is "old lead" and "new lead". The monthly/yearly increase of lead must be determined so that some prediction of the limit's being passed can be made by the airport's owners.
3) The PA airport is bounded by land and water. There needs to be both land and water measurements.
4) Measurements of lead on the hard surfaces needs to be monitored, since the airplanes run their engines going to/from the takeoff/landing strips.
5) Runoff from hardsurfaces needs to be reviewed, since it might be possible to mitigate runoff water, rather than let it get to the bay.6
6) Lead penetration in the ground is not going to be uniform. So, a density gradient pf maybe 3 meters makes more sense than what looks like an measurement of only one meter.

I'd also like to point out that I have never read an article about a family of five living a half mile from a general aviation airport dying of lead poisoning that was traced to the avgas sold at that airport. I have, on the other hand, read numerous articles about families dying when irresponsible pilots crashed their planes in communities surrounding general aviation airports.

The comment above about getting the carbon out of avgas amusing. Patrick Moore, a Canadian ecologist and former president of Greenpeace Canada, tells a similar sort of story about people in Green Peace wanting to avocate the outlawing of Chlorine. Moore, realized that people with agendas diffrent than his own had taken control of the organization, and he departed, or so he says.

I will continue to suggest that the City has a role in monitoring the airport for less-than-desirable byproducts of the airplanes using the site.



3 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Feb 10, 2015 at 9:38 am

The solution is simple:

Ban the sale of leaded fuels at PAO.

Fine any aircraft that tests positive for lead in its exhaust plume $1,000 for each occurrence.


5 people like this
Posted by mauricio
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Feb 10, 2015 at 11:14 am

It's no accident that local studies of lead poisoning consequences from avgas are non existent. There are enough billionaire fly boys and girls in this area to ensure that. Studies done in other countries contradict the Duke study and prove that lead particles can spread much wider due to strong winds and rain.

I don't know of even one occasion in which this issue was ever raised in a Palo Alto city council meeting. I wonder why(sarcasm).


3 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 10, 2015 at 12:49 pm

Curmudgeon,

Unfortunately Palo Alto has very little control of this municipal asset.

Soon after control of the airport was transferred from Santa Clara County, to Palo Alto, the previous City Council quickly transferred control of the airport to the FAA by accepting an Airport Improvement Grant.

Palo Alto has little to no control over most aspects of the airport important to the residents of Palo Alto. Airport improvement Grants are a scam that allows the federal government to use your tax dollars to buy the rights to control local airports, and then run them for the benefit of the aviation industry.

The FAA now controls what kind of gas the airport can sell, and when planes can take off, or land. When Santa Clara County "owned" the airport, it got in trouble with the FAA for something as petty as rejecting a skydiving application (see article below for details)

City set to take control of Palo Alto Airport
Palo Alto Online ~ August 11, 2014 Web Link


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Feb 10, 2015 at 1:02 pm

That was the fourth comment here, a suggestion by Resident of Addison School:
Go Skydiving. -- Web Link -- San Martin, South County airport.


3 people like this
Posted by DoloresB
a resident of Ohlone School
on Feb 11, 2015 at 10:03 am

Why would any type of fuel have lead in it? I thought most fuels were unleaded for safety purposes. I guess in some airports other types of jet fuels are allowed. I think it might be better if they specified which kind of fuel is allowed. Web Link


1 person likes this
Posted by Todd
a resident of Palo Alto Hills
on Feb 19, 2015 at 9:21 am

"But lead from avgas is minor compared to other sources such as lead-based paint from older buildings, leached lead from water pipes, and consumer products and toys manufactured in countries with less-stringent regulations, the researchers said."

Yes, a gunshot wound to the forehead is way worse than a gunshot wound to the arm.


3 people like this
Posted by Baylands Unwalkable
a resident of Midtown
on Feb 21, 2015 at 5:08 am

Baylands was once a place to stroll and enjoy a peaceful respite from our daily lives. Last week while walking with friend we were bombarded with noisy jet planes,small airplanes and some weird helicopter hovering/landing routine. Palo Alto spends so much on being "green", but has lost its eyes on the prize. When Baylands is no longer walkable due to fuel pollution and noise pollution, one has to wonder why the Airport approval went through so quickly. Signing off to the FAA, without any due diligence was the CC responsibility and the City Manager. I cannot live with the loss of My Baylands walk for 20years when FAA control gets renegotiated. I recommend all cc members and Gil Friend go take a walk at Baylands!!


2 people like this
Posted by Pegasus
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Feb 21, 2015 at 4:58 pm

@ Baylands unwalkable

I agree with you that the Baylands have become unwalkable. I was there one Saturday afternoon recently and experienced the same thing. They are being overflown constantly by low, large, loud commercial jets and other assorted aircraft. There is no pleasure in walking there any longer.

Furthermore, I am wondering about the legality of all these flights above the Baylands. Federal regulations dictate that open space preserves and parks receive special consideration when it comes to noise. These regulations may well be flaunted in the Baylands nowadays.

Anyone concerned about aircraft noise above Palo Alto and vicinity is invited to join the group that has formed to address these issues. Information at

Web Link



1 person likes this
Posted by ThirdThatMotion!
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 21, 2015 at 11:55 pm

Yes, I go to the Baylands almost every day in such great weather ... you have to get over half a mile out from Byxbee Park to get away from the noise of the planes, because many of the planes take off then some south or east, whatever it is over Byxbee Park down towards Mountain View and then veer out over the Bay right about where that depression is where kids rides their bikes around inside.

Every time I go out there I have my headphones on and I still cannot hear my books or music where there is a plane anywhere in the vicinity. A lot of the smallest planes are the loudest as well, there are really annoying and for a long time. It is constant.

I'd kike to know more about the regulations on open space preserves ... I am really getting to hate the Palo Alto Airport and its inconsiderate pilots.

And yes, I did notice the helicopter too, will fly up and hover in the airat the altitude of a multistory building, and cover the whole area with noise for an extended period. Today there was also a large helicipter in Moffat Field hovering for a long period over by the airstrip ... far away, and it was still covering the whole area to Palo Alto with noise.

The City Government will put up a fancy stupid bridge to get over to the Baylands, but at the same time they allow it be smellier, noisier and bombarded by leaded fumes ... not very green at all.

What up to the human priorities City of Palo Alto and put getting rid of the airport on the agenda for discussion!


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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