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Palo Alto's bid to join airport group grinds to a halt

Opponents argue city's inclusion would dilute SFO Roundtable's focus and resources

The SFO Community Roundtable voted on Dec. 1, 2021, not to expand its membership criteria to include Palo Alto. Photo by Bill Larkins; obtained via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license.

For more than two decades, Palo Alto has tried to join an exclusive club that had declined to have the city as a member.

Time and time again, the city has attempted to land a spot in the SFO Community Roundtable, a panel that includes San Francisco and most San Mateo County cities and works with the San Francisco International Airport on the issue of airplane noise. Inevitably, its entreaties to join went nowhere.

Palo Alto's fortunes appeared to be shifting in June, when most group members signaled support for adding the city and appointed an ad hoc committee to explore changes to its criteria for welcoming new members. But on Wednesday, its bid join came crashing down in a familiar manner as roundtable members voted to exclude Palo Alto from its roster.

Following the recommendations of its ad hoc committee, a somewhat divided roundtable reversed course from its June direction and opted to keep its membership limited to the two counties closest to the airport. Opponents of allowing Palo Alto to join argued that expanding membership would compromise the group's ability to represent its existing constituents. While roundtable members from the Peninsula cities of Atherton and Portola Valley supported adding Palo Alto and argued that doing so would strengthen the group, most of the members from cities closer to the airport opposed its entry into the panel.

In recapping the ad hoc committee's discussion, roundtable coordinator Michele Rodriguez cited concerns by committee members about the "dilution of resources and priorities, and that we have an obligation to existing members."

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Ricardo Ortiz, who serves on the Burlingame City Council, was among the ad hoc committee members who opposed Palo Alto's request. In explaining his position, Ortiz said he was concerned that once the roundtable allows one city from outside the county border to join, others would follow suit with similar requests and "it would be difficult for (the roundtable) to stop adding communities."

"Our mandate is, 'Do we open the borders or do we not?'" Ortiz said.

While 11 of his colleagues agreed that cities outside San Francisco and San Mateo counties should be denied entry, five others either voted against the committee's recommendation or abstained from the vote. Supporters of Palo Alto's bid to join the roundtable cast doubt on assertions that expanding the membership would drain the group's resources. Some pointed to the meeting's glaring irony: just minutes before roundtable staff rejected Palo Alto's membership on the grounds that the city would dilute the group's goals and require additional resources, the group's members swiftly and unanimously approved welcoming Colma into the roundtable — an addition that the panel proactively pursued.

The irony was not lost on Tom Hamilton, a San Bruno City Council member who supported Palo Alto's bid. Hamilton questioned why roundtable members cited resource issues when it comes to Palo Alto, but not when it comes to Colma.

"Using the 'dilution of resources' argument in all of its various flavors — it's a really bad look to do that, especially on the same night as we approved a new member," Hamilton said.

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The most fervent advocate for Palo Alto's entry was Atherton City Council member Bill Widmer. He said he was disappointed in the committee's recommendation and suggested that the resource problems that committee members had identified could easily be solved by either increasing membership fees for all members or charging new members an entry fee. Adding Palo Alto, he said, would make the group stronger.

"I'm surprised we went out to recruit people when some people wanted to be part of it," Widmer said. "And we have to go to Colma to make a presentation and say 'Please join.'"

The division over Palo Alto's memberships has also created a rare fissure between Reps. Anna Eshoo, whose congressional district includes Palo Alto, and Jackie Speier, whose congressional district includes San Mateo County and a portion of San Francisco. The two U.S. representatives each submitted a letter, with Eshoo urging the roundtable to include Palo Alto and Speier encouraging it not to expand membership.

Eshoo suggested that her constituents and those in San Mateo and San Francisco counties have overlapping problems when it comes to airplane noise and would benefit from working together.

"I think your influence as a body will grow as you represent more communities because you will have more opportunities to build consensus across county lines," Eshoo wrote to the roundtable.

Palo Alto Mayor Tom DuBois similarly argued in his letter that the city's inclusion would benefit the entire group because the city shares the same goals as other roundtable members.

"Because Palo Alto's needs are similar to the needs of many SFO Roundtable members, the Roundtable's ability to solve the noise problems of current members will be strengthened because Palo Alto will bring additional resources and knowledge (technical and legislative), and continue its demonstrated commitment to solving aircraft noise problems in a collaborative manner," DuBois said.

Some, however, worried that Palo Alto's voice would drown out those of other communities. Speier suggested in her letter that the roundtable's obligation should be primarily to its existing member communities and framed it as a matter of "social justice equities."

"There are economic disparities between residents of many of your current member cities and residents of many Silicon Valley cities," Speier wrote. "Palo Alto, for example, is a well-resourced city and has shown itself to be fully capable of independently obtaining information and professional services and advocating their issues to decision makers."

Hillsborough Mayor Al Royse, who served on the ad hoc committee and who opposed Palo Alto's entry into the roundtable, said his concern was that if the group allows one city outside the county line to enter, it would have to extend the courtesy to all other cities that claim to suffer negative impacts from airplane noise.

"I'm not comfortable that we can add a member outside the county's boundary lines and stop there and be fair to everybody else," Royse said.

Despite some debate, the Wednesday decision became in some sense a foregone conclusion after the committee voted 6-1 last month to recommend not expanding roundtable membership (Menlo Park City Council member Cecilia Taylor was the only person who dissented and supported Palo Alto's potential entry). Changing membership rules requires support from two-thirds of the voting members and most of the roundtable members who represent cities in northern San Mateo County have consistently opposed Palo Alto's entry. Representatives from Brisbane, Daly City, South San Francisco and Millbrae all voted against allowing the city to enter, as had representatives from Half Moon Bay and Redwood City.

The recommendation to accept the committee's direction initially fell just short of the two-thirds requirement, with 11 members supporting it, three members opposing and two abstaining. John Carvell, who serves on the Woodside Town Council and who was one of the abstaining members, then changed his vote to "yes," effectively ending the debate.

The decision represents a stinging setback to Palo Alto residents who have been working on the issue of airplane noise since 2014, when the Federal Aviation Administration began instituting its NextGen Initiative, which established three arrival routes over Palo Alto. Palo Alto resident Rebecca Ward was among those who addressed the group on Wednesday and suggested that without collaboration, jurisdictions will have to explore options to address airplane noise in ways that may be less collegial.

"It benefits everybody to actually have a collegial way to solve problems and it needs to be through the SFO Airport and its official roundtable body," Ward said shortly before the vote.

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Palo Alto's bid to join airport group grinds to a halt

Opponents argue city's inclusion would dilute SFO Roundtable's focus and resources

by / Palo Alto Weekly

Uploaded: Thu, Dec 2, 2021, 11:32 am

For more than two decades, Palo Alto has tried to join an exclusive club that had declined to have the city as a member.

Time and time again, the city has attempted to land a spot in the SFO Community Roundtable, a panel that includes San Francisco and most San Mateo County cities and works with the San Francisco International Airport on the issue of airplane noise. Inevitably, its entreaties to join went nowhere.

Palo Alto's fortunes appeared to be shifting in June, when most group members signaled support for adding the city and appointed an ad hoc committee to explore changes to its criteria for welcoming new members. But on Wednesday, its bid join came crashing down in a familiar manner as roundtable members voted to exclude Palo Alto from its roster.

Following the recommendations of its ad hoc committee, a somewhat divided roundtable reversed course from its June direction and opted to keep its membership limited to the two counties closest to the airport. Opponents of allowing Palo Alto to join argued that expanding membership would compromise the group's ability to represent its existing constituents. While roundtable members from the Peninsula cities of Atherton and Portola Valley supported adding Palo Alto and argued that doing so would strengthen the group, most of the members from cities closer to the airport opposed its entry into the panel.

In recapping the ad hoc committee's discussion, roundtable coordinator Michele Rodriguez cited concerns by committee members about the "dilution of resources and priorities, and that we have an obligation to existing members."

Ricardo Ortiz, who serves on the Burlingame City Council, was among the ad hoc committee members who opposed Palo Alto's request. In explaining his position, Ortiz said he was concerned that once the roundtable allows one city from outside the county border to join, others would follow suit with similar requests and "it would be difficult for (the roundtable) to stop adding communities."

"Our mandate is, 'Do we open the borders or do we not?'" Ortiz said.

While 11 of his colleagues agreed that cities outside San Francisco and San Mateo counties should be denied entry, five others either voted against the committee's recommendation or abstained from the vote. Supporters of Palo Alto's bid to join the roundtable cast doubt on assertions that expanding the membership would drain the group's resources. Some pointed to the meeting's glaring irony: just minutes before roundtable staff rejected Palo Alto's membership on the grounds that the city would dilute the group's goals and require additional resources, the group's members swiftly and unanimously approved welcoming Colma into the roundtable — an addition that the panel proactively pursued.

The irony was not lost on Tom Hamilton, a San Bruno City Council member who supported Palo Alto's bid. Hamilton questioned why roundtable members cited resource issues when it comes to Palo Alto, but not when it comes to Colma.

"Using the 'dilution of resources' argument in all of its various flavors — it's a really bad look to do that, especially on the same night as we approved a new member," Hamilton said.

The most fervent advocate for Palo Alto's entry was Atherton City Council member Bill Widmer. He said he was disappointed in the committee's recommendation and suggested that the resource problems that committee members had identified could easily be solved by either increasing membership fees for all members or charging new members an entry fee. Adding Palo Alto, he said, would make the group stronger.

"I'm surprised we went out to recruit people when some people wanted to be part of it," Widmer said. "And we have to go to Colma to make a presentation and say 'Please join.'"

The division over Palo Alto's memberships has also created a rare fissure between Reps. Anna Eshoo, whose congressional district includes Palo Alto, and Jackie Speier, whose congressional district includes San Mateo County and a portion of San Francisco. The two U.S. representatives each submitted a letter, with Eshoo urging the roundtable to include Palo Alto and Speier encouraging it not to expand membership.

Eshoo suggested that her constituents and those in San Mateo and San Francisco counties have overlapping problems when it comes to airplane noise and would benefit from working together.

"I think your influence as a body will grow as you represent more communities because you will have more opportunities to build consensus across county lines," Eshoo wrote to the roundtable.

Palo Alto Mayor Tom DuBois similarly argued in his letter that the city's inclusion would benefit the entire group because the city shares the same goals as other roundtable members.

"Because Palo Alto's needs are similar to the needs of many SFO Roundtable members, the Roundtable's ability to solve the noise problems of current members will be strengthened because Palo Alto will bring additional resources and knowledge (technical and legislative), and continue its demonstrated commitment to solving aircraft noise problems in a collaborative manner," DuBois said.

Some, however, worried that Palo Alto's voice would drown out those of other communities. Speier suggested in her letter that the roundtable's obligation should be primarily to its existing member communities and framed it as a matter of "social justice equities."

"There are economic disparities between residents of many of your current member cities and residents of many Silicon Valley cities," Speier wrote. "Palo Alto, for example, is a well-resourced city and has shown itself to be fully capable of independently obtaining information and professional services and advocating their issues to decision makers."

Hillsborough Mayor Al Royse, who served on the ad hoc committee and who opposed Palo Alto's entry into the roundtable, said his concern was that if the group allows one city outside the county line to enter, it would have to extend the courtesy to all other cities that claim to suffer negative impacts from airplane noise.

"I'm not comfortable that we can add a member outside the county's boundary lines and stop there and be fair to everybody else," Royse said.

Despite some debate, the Wednesday decision became in some sense a foregone conclusion after the committee voted 6-1 last month to recommend not expanding roundtable membership (Menlo Park City Council member Cecilia Taylor was the only person who dissented and supported Palo Alto's potential entry). Changing membership rules requires support from two-thirds of the voting members and most of the roundtable members who represent cities in northern San Mateo County have consistently opposed Palo Alto's entry. Representatives from Brisbane, Daly City, South San Francisco and Millbrae all voted against allowing the city to enter, as had representatives from Half Moon Bay and Redwood City.

The recommendation to accept the committee's direction initially fell just short of the two-thirds requirement, with 11 members supporting it, three members opposing and two abstaining. John Carvell, who serves on the Woodside Town Council and who was one of the abstaining members, then changed his vote to "yes," effectively ending the debate.

The decision represents a stinging setback to Palo Alto residents who have been working on the issue of airplane noise since 2014, when the Federal Aviation Administration began instituting its NextGen Initiative, which established three arrival routes over Palo Alto. Palo Alto resident Rebecca Ward was among those who addressed the group on Wednesday and suggested that without collaboration, jurisdictions will have to explore options to address airplane noise in ways that may be less collegial.

"It benefits everybody to actually have a collegial way to solve problems and it needs to be through the SFO Airport and its official roundtable body," Ward said shortly before the vote.

Comments

M
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Dec 2, 2021 at 1:20 pm
M, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Dec 2, 2021 at 1:20 pm


The Roundtable also stressed that they are making every effort to recruit East Palo Alto, which has similar concentrated and low altitude aircraft noise issues to Palo Alto. This is somewhat ironic because the Roundtable's recent success in increasing altitudes of arrivals from the Pacific over Woodside (via the new PIRAT arrival) has required a more longer descent path to the airport which in turn shifted the arrival path to both Palo Also, and then on to East Palo Alto. And, it remains to be seen if the Roundtable will actually bring East Palo Alto on board, after years of this type of traffic shaping over them.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Dec 2, 2021 at 2:08 pm
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Dec 2, 2021 at 2:08 pm

"Hamilton questioned why roundtable members cited resource issues when it comes to Palo Alto, but not when it comes to Colma."

Because Colma is mainly cemeteries and the dead don't generally have much to say?


Leland J.
Registered user
Professorville
on Dec 2, 2021 at 4:35 pm
Leland J. , Professorville
Registered user
on Dec 2, 2021 at 4:35 pm

If you want to understand why the Roundtable rejected PA, just read this paper! Palo Alto is the epitome of NIMBY, me-first initiatives. Citizens tell world-class educational institutions (eg Stanford, Castilleja) to literally leave town. They complain about a vital rail line making too much noise after they move close to the tracks. They bicker about bike lanes and bridges and Black Lives Matter murals... from their homes which are all worth 3 or 5 or 10 million dollars. They even propose wild conspiracy theories when the fire department arrives too quickly(!) to put out a fire at a home owned by a Google executive.

All of these have been hot topics around town and in PA Online.

Now you tell me, who would ever invite someone with this sensibility to a roundtable that is actually trying to get things done?


M
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Dec 2, 2021 at 6:34 pm
M, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Dec 2, 2021 at 6:34 pm

The NIMBY charge above is not warranted. Palo Alto citizens are well regarded at the Roundtable for their preparation and contributions, including by those who voted against adding the city. Palo Alto City Council members have attended every Roundtable meeting, including subcommittee meetings, for the past five years, to build credibility, not make demands.

Palo Alto's only request to date is for membership given that 60% of SFO arrivals fly at low altitudes over the city, then on to either Belle Haven or East Palo Alto. The core issue is that SFO is the only major airport roundtable in the country that defines membership not based on measurable impact, but rather on being in SF or San Mateo Counties -- heavily impacted or not. This exclusivity originated as a result of land use and permitting negotiations years ago between the San Mateo County Building and Planning Department, which still operates the Roundtable, and SFO. The flight paths over Palo Alto are where they are, but access to the FAA -- which runs exclusively through the airport -- would allow us work on what can be made better -- e.g., eliminating the regular use of speed brakes over Los Altos and EPA -- and to stay on top of the new landing system and airplane separation architecture that is being implemented at SFO as we speak.

Being rejected once again is a setback, but this time SFO itself supported Palo Alto's request for membership, in addition to a number of cities. Lastly SFO Roundtable meetings are open to the public via Zoom, and members or not, it is a good place to learn about the air traffic over us.


Online Name
Registered user
Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Dec 3, 2021 at 8:03 am
Online Name, Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 8:03 am

The "Nimby" charge is simply the usual deflection from whatever the issue is.

Saying "from their homes which are all worth 3 or 5 or 10 million dollars" signals that the writer is uninformed since PA housing prices are much lower than in surrounding communities in part because PA has much smaller lots and more apartments than the other communities.


William Hitchens
Registered user
Mountain View
on Dec 3, 2021 at 10:40 am
William Hitchens, Mountain View
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 10:40 am

So, why not just shut SFO down if nobody wants low altitude landing traffic? Foster City near the Bay can be a nightmare because it's right in the landing path and they fly two abreast every few minutes during peak arrival traffic times, at least they did the last time I was there. BTW, that was a facetious question, or was it???


TimR
Registered user
Downtown North
on Dec 3, 2021 at 3:22 pm
TimR, Downtown North
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 3:22 pm

They probably realize that before long, Palo Alto would be arguing that SFO should be closed, to make room for affordable, high-density housing. I mean, what's more important: trips to New Zealand, or an affordable place to call home?


ST
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Dec 3, 2021 at 3:46 pm
ST, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 3:46 pm

If Palo Alto really wants to address airplane noise, we should close the Palo Alto airport, which sends planes roaring over East Palo Alto on a regular basis. I was at a tour of the superb new EpaCenter and the congratulatory speeches were impossible to hear because of planes taking off every few minutes. If those planes were flying over Palo Alto homes, you would hear complaints louder than the planes themselves.


JR
Registered user
Palo Verde
on Dec 3, 2021 at 7:14 pm
JR, Palo Verde
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 7:14 pm

I agree that PAO should be closed, but that's not the subject here. The issue is that the City and County of San Francisco is flying planes at low altitude over Santa Clara County, which is two counties over from themselves, with no accountability or concern for lives they are destroying. They will gladly fly low altitude over your house in order to save 30 seconds of flight time, think about that. Your peace and quiet is not worth a dime to them, they will literally trade your good night sleep for $10 in saved fuel cost. They just don't care.

SFO is a corrupt organization and should be investigated by the FBI under RICO.


Palo Alto native
Registered user
Old Palo Alto
on Dec 3, 2021 at 8:33 pm
Palo Alto native, Old Palo Alto
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 8:33 pm

OK so now we have been turned away from the roundtable again. It’s time to start the legal battle against the a FAA , for dumpingSo much noise and arrival routes directly over PaloAlto. Molly Stump
Start sharpening your pencil! Also think about getting a lobbyist that will actually fight the FAA and WIN!


Jeremy Erman
Registered user
Midtown
on Dec 3, 2021 at 11:30 pm
Jeremy Erman, Midtown
Registered user
on Dec 3, 2021 at 11:30 pm

This issue seems like a snapshot of the essence of human politics, of different populations striving to get along; one group says, 'We want to join you,' and some of their neighbors who know them say, 'They're good people! They'll help us!", but people farther away say, 'No, we like our club just the way it is, and besides, accepting you foreigners would break one of our holy rules.' The following quote from the article sums the whole issue pretty clearly:

"Opponents of allowing Palo Alto to join argued that expanding membership would compromise the group's ability to represent its existing constituents. While roundtable members from the Peninsula cities of Atherton and Portola Valley supported adding Palo Alto and argued that doing so would strengthen the group, most of the members from cities closer to the airport opposed its entry into the panel."


PaloAltoVoter
Registered user
Crescent Park
on Dec 4, 2021 at 12:09 pm
PaloAltoVoter, Crescent Park
Registered user
on Dec 4, 2021 at 12:09 pm

What happened to the Santa Clara roundtable by Cities Association? Where are they in all this?


clear as mud
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 6, 2021 at 7:55 am
clear as mud, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Dec 6, 2021 at 7:55 am

PaloAltoVoter,

"What happened to the Santa Clara roundtable by Cities Association? Where are they in all this?"

The Santa Clara/Santa Cruz group disbanded at its last meeting on November 11, 2021.

This evolved after the Cities Association terminated its role as the SC/SC's fiscal agent (third party to handle financial and Admin duties) and a replacement fiscal agent or other structure could not be found after months of searching. Something happened which the Cities Association can't disclose because it's a confidential legal matter so we'll probably never know and at this point a distraction to the real issues with this group and roundtables in general. Roundtables have always been to mediate community issues, to keep the airport growing.

The FAA makes appearances at roundtable meetings as if it was King; airports and airlines are royal officers often speaking for the King. Posturing about how to work with the FAA via Roundtables is absurd given the conflicts of interests. They help the King keep the most affected citizens buried in technical jargon that they themselves don't understand. The SFO Roundtable Chair not long ago described an airport response to an environmental question with "clear as mud." This is how the FAA has maintained outdated noise policies that defy its own scientific studies and common sense for 50 years.

The SC/SC Roundtable maintained a log of their actions taken. Take a look and judge for yourself what is accomplished in two years Web Link

The City could start it's own Roundtable if it wanted to. The FAA doesn't care as long as the rules are the various arbitrary rules they make up and efforts take decades to obscure the real goal of airports -growth . If and where the City is more forthcoming about the SC/SC, I hope it won't be just about the distractions.


William Hitchens
Registered user
Mountain View
on Dec 7, 2021 at 11:37 am
William Hitchens, Mountain View
Registered user
on Dec 7, 2021 at 11:37 am

@TimR
I think you're on to something. If they shut down SFO, then the runways and taxiways could be used as "safe parking" for many thousands of those dangerous RV squatters polluting Bay Area city streets. And the terminals could be used as homeless shelters. But of course, that would just encourage more people to live free on public property in RV's AND attract more homeless people. That's The Law of Unintended Consequences, something that homeless advocates either don't know or just ignore because it conflicts with their dreams of a "fair" world. One person's "fairness" is another person's tyranny.

Never mind the fact that essential air traffic all over the USA and to and from Asia and Europe would be totally screwed up.


We Are The People
Registered user
Menlo Park
on Dec 7, 2021 at 1:36 pm
We Are The People, Menlo Park
Registered user
on Dec 7, 2021 at 1:36 pm

For over 30yrs People have talked about getting rid of that Palo Alto Airport? And attempting in going forward with Plans to Install an Exit from the Dumbarton Bridge with a hookup to Highway 101?
An Exit from the Dumbarton Bridge would relieve Traffic coming out of Palo Alto.
Instead Palo Alto is pushing for the Newell Bridge being expanded? And a few of Palo Alto Citizens in another Forum suggested that East Palo Alto (EPA), relinquish a portion of Their 2.5 mile community. So that Palo Alto may have further access for themselves? Leaving their precious Airport alone. There have been more than 3 Plane crashes one of which ended in a Plane taken out Homes in East Palo Alto? One Crashing on the Home of a Former East Palo Alto Mayor. And now am hearing that East Palo Alto doesn't want to come to the Table? Strange?

This is another situation, where People with Time, Money and Their Agenda has populated against those that have none of that. East Palo Alto is ridden with underlying, As if to say Those Citizens don't count. They can't fight back.
They say "We like things the way that they are"? As usual the powers that Be (with the power and influence) have taken away most of the Entertainment and left the High Fluent Toys that few want to enjoy. They have "Ming's" building loaded up with "Cars for Sale". They took away "Scott's". Both nice places to Dine? Oh but they kept the Golf range?

Get rid of the Palo Alto Airport. By the way, both San Jose & San Francisco, divert Their Planes close over the same areas? You've gotten rid of the Gorgeous Marina with the Boats and Restaurant. And as time has gone by you've installed a "Playground" for those that have Time and Money. There has just been installed a Overpass Bike ramp connecting the Westside to the East. Now there is talk Building a Building for the Homeless. Leaving (EPA) congested Traffic remaining. And you say that East Palo Alto, doesn't want to come to the Table? Then I ask this...."Who are you asking?"


Dog
Registered user
Midtown
on Dec 7, 2021 at 6:00 pm
Dog, Midtown
Registered user
on Dec 7, 2021 at 6:00 pm

I fly the airplanes that land at SFO. Quite often we're kept high and fast on the arrival followed with the noisy speedbrakes when overhead Palo Alto. Yep, as a resident I dislike this as much as anyone. Redesigning the arrivals to help keep the aircraft in a clean/idle configuration until well over the bay would help immensely.


clear as mud
Registered user
Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Dec 14, 2021 at 11:46 am
clear as mud, Another Palo Alto neighborhood
Registered user
on Dec 14, 2021 at 11:46 am

Dog,

"Redesigning the arrivals to help keep the aircraft in a clean/idle configuration until well over the bay would help immensely."

Thank you for pointing out that you would prefer to fly clean and idle configurations. I've heard that from others who are familiar with our airspace. That it was as much a surprise to airline pilots that the SFO changes in 2014 were a flop and not delivering on the environmental promises.

Roundtables don't appear to work to redesign airspace for least impact, but spend years on tweaks to appease a few while ensuring that FAA and airports stay happy and growing with subsidies for airports, airline bailouts and subsidies for private jets. See the FAA's ACRP program Web Link and the recent $400,000 RFP basically to develop opposition messaging to citizen activism that discourages air travel. Web Link

"Build partnerships with local communities, key influencers, and other stakeholders;
Anticipate and prepare for relevant emerging issues that could affect attitudes toward air travel; and
Develop messaging/communication strategies that allow airports to translate evidence-based research findings to:"

"Key influencers"?.....this sounds like roundtables to me, but it could be so many people that are actively engaged in obfuscation.

What I haven't seen yet is any whistleblowers on aviation environmental issues- as is happening with the Boeing discoveries that show profits over safety culture.
Latest story. "Boeing and its suppliers fall short on safety oversight, Senate whistleblower report says"
Web Link


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