On 27-04-2011, in Bookshelf, by steve
For many years now aviation lived under the shadow of demands that envisaged solving environmental and congestion problems by capping aviation growth. Misguided and economically damaging as this idea was, it was getting traction in various fora in Europe, sending shivers across the industry.
With the publication of the EC White Paper entitled “Roadmap to a Single European Transport Area”, for the first time a high level EC document refutes the capping idea, stating bluntly: “Curbing mobility is not an option”. Although a white paper is not law, it does send a powerful message about the thinking of the Commission.
The paper does provide the inevitable support to EU star projects like Galileo and SESAR but other than that, it does not go into detail on how some of the essential funding will be provided especially in terms of SESAR. This is crucial as SESAR’s success is viewed more and more as dependent on seed money coming from public sources.
While far from perfect and obviously missing a few important elements (like water-tight assurances that the regulatory burden on operators will not be allowed to unduly increase), the paper does bring a fresh and refreshing framework that is suitable for guiding the development of future policies. This fact is reflected by the generally positive reception of the paper in the wider aviation community.
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