Last Friday, the cabinet issued a memorandum describing how they see Schiphol's development over the coming years. The suggestion was made to reduce the maximum number of flights from 500,000 to 440,000 by the end of 2023. Just like the cabinet, Schiphol aims for a good balance between a pleasant living environment and a strong network. However, we are concerned about the way in which the cabinet wants to implement these plans.
Published on: 29 June 2022
Uncertainty and ambiguity
The cabinet wants to find a new balance between the importance of a good international airport (and good business climate that goes with it) and the importance of a better and healthier living environment. As an airport, we consider that balance to be just as important. However, the cabinet's plans as presented now lead to great uncertainty. Moreover, there is a lot of ambiguity regarding the execution of these plans.
Potential shift in noise nuisance
We are concerned about the (temporary) return to the old noise system while still having to adhere to as many of the rules of the new system as possible. It has been stated several times in the past that such a combination is not easy to implement in practice, and that focusing on the old system of enforcement points could lead to a shift in noise nuisance that would be to the detriment of local residents. The new system wasn’t created together with our neighbours for nothing!
Concerns about network
Schiphol's aim is to connect the Netherlands with the world as an increasingly quiet and clean airport. We do not strive for growth for the sake of growth, nor for contraction for the sake of contraction. We are therefore worried about the impact on the network of destinations at Schiphol. Fewer flights may lead to a reduction in the number of destinations. And that could have a negative effect on the business climate and employment opportunities in the Netherlands.
We want a well-thought-out approach that will lead to a better balance. That provides certainty and perspective for all parties involved: local residents, governments and the aviation sector. Schiphol will continue to invest in that balance. This approach includes a nature permit and an airport traffic decree, which is currently being worked on. Together with the airlines, we will consult with the cabinet to contribute to such a well-thought-out approach.