Environment News

PH aviation authorities aim for environment friendly skies

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THE Civil Aviation Authority of the Philippines is looking for ways to use alternative energy and reduce carbon emissions of the aviation sector in compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organization, and to make Philippine skies “environment friendly.”

“This could be achieved through maximizing traffic flow of airborne aircraft arriving at a congested airport, implementation of the User-Preferred Routes over the oceanic airspace to allow air carriers to fly on optimized paths instead of using standard routes, and the enhancement of terminal capacity through the use of required navigation performance instead of low-level holding and vectoring as well as the use of continuous descent operations to reduce energy used in an aircraft’s arrival, approach and landing,” the CAAP, in a statement, said.

Moreover, Department of Transportation (DOTr) Undersecretary for Aviation Manuel Antonio Tamayo explained that to have eco-friendly skies, the CAAP should recommend to Congress the drafting of an economic and market-based legislation that will enable the use of emissions trading in aviation.

Emissions trading is a government-mandated, market-based approach to controlling pollution by providing economic incentives for achieving reductions in the emissions of pollutants. Various countries, states and groups of companies have adopted such trading systems, notably for mitigating climate change.

Tamayo, a veteran commercial pilot before being appointed as CAAP deputy director general and later as DOTr undersecretary for aviation, added that CAAP, the regulatory body with jurisdiction over the entire civil aviation system of the Philippines, intends to establish waste disposal facilities in the airports, and regulate aircraft to ensure they are more fuel-efficient.

He also stressed that to effectively improve air traffic service to reduce fuel burn, carbon emissions and increase efficiency there should have information exchange with stakeholders to avoid delays on inbound aircraft on the country’s airports.

Meanwhile, the CAAP achieved this year above average on global safety audit, up ten percent from 2016.

CAAP spokesman Eric Apolonio said that the agency has passed the Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme of the ICAO Coordinated Validation Mission (ICVM) conducted from May 30 to June 8.

Apolonio noted that based on the results, the CAAP has improved its effective implementation with current overall results of 69.68 percent, which is above the world average of 64.85 percent. This means the country complies with international safety standards.

The current result also showed a significant 10.77 percent improvement than the 58.91 percent rating of CAAP in 2016, Apolonio said.

The ICAO also cleared the CAAP on issues relating to Significant Safety Concerns (SSCs).

The SSC indicate that a State is not providing sufficient safety oversight to ensure the effective implementation of applicable ICAO Standards. SSCs may be issued in the area of operations, air navigation services, aerodromes, airworthiness or licensing.

Meanwhile, DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade lauded Tamayo and CAAP director general Jim C. Sydiongco for steering CAAP management in adhering to ICAO’s mandate for passing the global safety audit.

As the country’s aviation industry has grown to its advancement, the civil aviation regulator has taken an interest to cut environment impact by way of improving air traffic system that will significantly reduce fuel burn and carbon emissions.


Benjie Vergara
A veteran reporter covering the Ninoy Aquino International Airport in Manila. He is currently writing for Manila Times, the Philippines' oldest newspaper.

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