Meeting 2/2015 - 22 May 2015

Agenda Item 1

Opening Remarks and Adoption of Agenda

The Chair welcomed members and guests. Apologies were noted from:

  • Mr Paul Carroll, Airservices Australia; Mr Wayne Lewis replaces Mr Carroll.
  • Ms Louise Markus MP Member for Macquarie
  • Mr Neil Harley representing the Member for Reid
  • Mr Ron Hoenig MP, Member for Heffron

The Chair welcomed a new member and representative:

  • Ms Jo Haylen MP, Member for Summer Hill. Ms Haylen replaces Ms Carmel Tebbutt MP, Member for the former seat of Marrickville (now Summer Hill).
  • Mr Mitchell Wilson, Office of the Member for Summer Hill


A draft agenda was circulated on 12 May 2015. No new Items of business were proposed.

Agenda Item 2

Confirmation of Draft Summary Record of Meeting 1/2015

2.1—Incorporation of suggested changes

There were no suggested changes so the record is confirmed.

2.2—Action Items arising from previous meetings

All of the Action items from the last meeting have been completed or are on the Agenda for discussion.

Agenda Item 3

Community Question Time—Members of the Community

A number of questions were raised by two Hunters Hill residents at the last meeting. Airservices agreed to refer these to the Implementation and Monitoring Committee (IMC) for analysis and report back to this meeting. A copy of the Airservices summary response was circulated to members on 20 May 2015 and Ms Keenan noted that the more detailed response reviewed by IMC will be circulated to SACF to help inform the queries raised by Hunters Hill residents. The residents have advised that they are unable to attend this meeting, but are interested in the response, and the Secretariat will email it to them.

Action 01/02—The Secretariat to email Airservices' response to the Hunters Hill residents.

In addition a number of similar questions have been raised with the Chair by another Hunters Hill resident. This resident is also unable to attend and sends his apologies. The Chair noted that the Deputy Prime Minister's Office has responded to these questions.

The following new questions have been put by two community members from the No Aircraft Noise Party:

Badgerys Creek

  1. Will the first operational Sydney West Runway take the curfew and shoulder period international flights (Boeing 747 and Airbus 380) from Sydney Airport?
  2. When will this runway be operational?

Mr Stone noted that under the Sydney Airport Curfew Act 1995 (the Act) a number of aircraft movements are currently permitted during the curfew, including small propeller aircraft (Section 13), low noise business jets (Section 14), and a quota of heavy freight movements (Section 15). The Act includes a provision (Section 17)  under which those aircraft movements will no longer be allowed from Kingsford Smith Airport (KSA) once the airport at Badgerys Creek is operational. There is no provision in the Act to remove currently permitted international curfew shoulder movements (Section 12) from KSA. The Western Sydney Airport is expected to be operational by the mid-2020s.

Master Plan

  1. Has the Federal Government approved terminal changes to Sydney Airport which would allow international and domestic gates in all terminals?
  2. Have the airlines agreed?
  3. What agreements are necessary before Sydney Airport could make these changes?

Mr Plummer noted that the Federal Government approved Sydney Airport's Master Plan 2033 on 17 February 2014. The development plan for two integrated international, domestic and regional terminal precincts is a key feature of that Master Plan. Chapter 15 of the Master Plan covers how the developments will be implemented, and indicates that the timing will depend on a number of factors including demand, Sydney Airport's assessment of the forecast market conditions, commercial discussions with stakeholders including airlines, environmental approval processes and the outcome of stakeholder consultation processes. Sydney Airport's current priority is the implementation of its 5 year Ground Transport Plan.

Agenda Item 4

Sydney Basin Airspace Study

The Office of Airspace Regulation (OAR) in the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) released a draft report of the Sydney Basin Airspace Study on 31 March 2015.

Much of the study is concerned with designing flight paths and procedures to avoid conflict and maintain safety. However there are places where it discusses issues which are of interest to SACF, such as the Long Term Operating Plan (LTOP), the Curfew and the Movement Cap, and Performance Based Navigation (PBN).

The Secretariat circulated a draft response to this study, and sought comments on that draft response. Mr Stone noted that LTOP, the Curfew and the Movement Cap were excluded from being in scope for that study but there was some discussion of PBN, which is an issue of interest to SACF.

Mr Clarke put the view that it was inconceivable that a report on Sydney airspace could ignore LTOP, which is fundamental to the operation of Sydney Airport, and noted that despite excluding LTOP, it makes a number of comments about LTOP imposing constraints on the efficiency of the airport. Mr Hayes put the view that in excluding LTOP and other noise controls CASA was ignoring their legislated responsibility to protect the environment. Mr Plummer noted that, under its legislation, CASA's most important consideration is air safety. Ensuring safety is also the LTOP's first objective. It was agreed to incorporate members' comments into the draft response and circulate it to members for approval prior to submitting it to CASA. It was agreed that in his report to the Deputy Prime Minister the Chair would note that SACF has expressed some concerns about the Airspace study to CASA.

Action 02/02—The Secretariat to incorporate members comments into the draft response and circulate it to members for consideration prior to developing a final response.

Action 03/02—The Chair to note in his report to the Deputy Prime Minister that SACF has some concerns about the draft Sydney Airspace Study and has made those concerns known to CASA.

Agenda Item 5

Allowing B777–200 ER aircraft to operate on the third runway—Mr Abrams

Mr Abrams noted that the proposal to allow B777–200ER to operate on the third runway would avoid the problem of international aircraft being diverted when the main runway is unavailable but the third runway can still be used. He noted that international airfares had fallen by 25 per cent in the last 10 years and that margins were very slim. He noted that there were 1–2 avoidable diversions per year, and that diversions were very expensive for airlines, and provided a very bad experience for passengers. He noted that the B777–200ER was a similar size to the A330 and has a slightly smaller noise footprint, and proposed that this issue be referred to IMC for analysis.

It was noted that more detailed information was required on the noise footprint for the B777–200ER. Mr Hill noted that allowing the B777–200ER to operate on the third runway would change the mix of flights over Kurnell. Mr Lewis advised that there is an existing provision in current procedures that allows aircraft larger than the B777–200ER to land on the third runway when there is no other runway available.

Action 04/02—The issue of whether the B777–200ER should be allowed to operate on the third runway will be referred to IMC for consideration of the noise and safety issues involved, and a report will be provided back to SACF.

Agenda Item 6

Sydney Airport Report—Mr Ted Plummer

Mr Plummer reported that the formal Notice to Consult period for the Western Sydney Airport expires on 30 June 2015. The Government's expectations for this airport are that it be operational from the mid-2020s, with an initial single runway of 3,700 metres. It is expected to be a full service airport serving international, domestic and regional sectors and built to serve new demand, initially around 3 million passengers, rising to an ultimate capacity of 80 million passengers with both runways operational.

The Deputy Prime Minister indicated that the next stage of the process, the Notice of Intention could be delivered by the end of this year and then SACL has either 4 or 9 months to make a decision one way or the other.

Western Sydney is a unique opportunity to build a greenfields airport that is world leading in terms of its technology and its ability to respond to the changing needs of passengers. It needs to be flexible, fit for purpose, provide a high quality meet and greet experience, and be efficient and future proof.

Sydney Airport's economic contribution continues to grow, contributing 307,000 jobs directly or indirectly, representing 6.4 per cent of the state economy, with 29,000 people who work at the airport.

Work on the Ground Transport Plan is continuing. The airport is proposing to construct the remaining 4 levels of the Northern multi-level car park, taking it to the 12 levels approved in the original Major Development Plan (MDP) approved in 2005.

The MDP for proposed works in the T2/T3 precinct was approved by the Deputy Prime Minister on 12 March, and work has begun on roadworks to create a dedicated one way exit from the T2/T3 precinct.

Following feedback from cycling representatives the Ground Transport Plan includes better and safer access facilities for cyclists, including bicycle storage and end-of-trip facilities. The Airport is committed to work with NSW and local governments to ensure effective linkages between on-airport shared paths and the off-airport cycleway network. A Sydney Airport Cycling Forum (another SACF) was established incorporating relevant stakeholder groups.

The Commonwealth declared prescribed airspace for Sydney Airport on 20 March 2015. This includes all the prescribed surfaces in the one document.

In April Sydney Airport released its first Sustainability Report, and has recently invited expressions of interest from manufacturers to take part in an open tender to supply electric buses to be used on the airport.

Mr Hayes inquired about the intended role of the Western Sydney Airport. Mr Stone agreed to circulate a recent speech by the Deputy Prime Minister which outlines the role of the Western Sydney Airport and information about the Terms of Reference for the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

Action 05/02—The Secretariat to circulate a copy of the Deputy Prime Minister's speech on the Western Sydney Airport and information about the EIS to members.

Agenda Item 7

Airservices Australia Report—Ms Elissa Keenan, Airservices

The April 2015 Operational Statistics report is on the Airservices website at:

Ms Keenan reported that while a short response to the Hunters Hill residents was circulated to SACF, a more detailed 15 page report was produced and will be circulated to SACF and provided to the residents.

Agenda Item 8

Implementation and Monitoring Committee (IMC) Report—Mr Clarke

The Implementation and Monitoring Committee has met twice since the last SACF Meeting, on 31 March 2015 and 19 May 2015.

The majority of both meetings was concerned with discussions around the questions raised by Mr Hayes on the capacity of noise sharing modes and questions raised by Hunters Hill residents. A draft response was prepared by Airservices and this was reviewed by IMC members and a revised response will be developed to incorporate those comments.

One issue that emerged is the idea of developing to develop a suite of measures that might be used to define what success in noise sharing and the implementation of LTOP. It was acknowledged that runway end targets are a pretty blunt instrument and there are other aspects of LTOP that aren't measured that might help to define what good noise management might look like. It was proposed to brainstorm this at the next IMC meeting and try to develop a suite of measures for consideration at the next SACF meeting.

The terminology for Performance Based Navigation (PBN) has been the subject of many changes over time. A paper put together by CASA sets out the changes in PBN terminology and explains what it actually means and this has been circulated to SACF members.

The issue of ground operations such as aircraft towing, and the impact that has on mode capacity was considered, and Airservices is developing a document to better explain this to a wider audience.

Agenda Item 9

SACF submission on the Western Sydney Airport EIS—Discussion

Mr Hayes put the view that the EIS is a large and complex document and SACF needs professional assistance to prepare an in-depth and expert response. A number of options for developing a SACF response were considered, and it was agreed that the Secretariat would co-ordinate a draft response for consideration by members, and that representatives of the EIS team would be invited to address SACF to explain the issues of interest and answer questions.

Agenda Item 10

Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development Reports—Mr Stone

10.1—Business Jet Curfew Movements

Changes were made to the list of business jets permitted to operate during the curfew and in response to concerns raised by SACF that this could lead to an increase in the number of business jet movements the Department was asked to monitor and report on business jet movements. In 2014 there was an average of 5 business jet movements per week and during the 10 weeks since the list was updated there have been 31 movements, which represents a decrease, and there appears to be a longer term decrease over time.

10.2—Curfew Dispensation Report

A dispensation was granted for runway works, which result in aircraft being required to take-off and land closer to the northern end, and the legislation allows for a specific dispensation for that.

The Sydney Curfew Act 1995 allows 24 curfew shoulder movements a week, and currently 21 such shoulder movements are used.  Qantas Airways has applied to use those unallocated movements for 13 flights from Vancouver to Sydney from 22 June to 20 July 2015, which have had to be rescheduled as a result of runway works being undertaken in Vancouver. The Department has approved those curfew shoulder flights.

Mr Woods raised the issue where some early morning flights are being directed over Sutherland Shire prior to being routed to an over-water approach from the south, at a time when there are no other conflicting flights. Airservices noted that this was a standard operating procedure, and agreed to investigate it.

Agenda Item 10.3—SACF correspondence


Agenda Item 10.4—SACF phone line


Agenda Item 11—Other Business

Mr Clarke inquired whether there had been any developments following the Chair's letter to the National Acoustic Laboratories. No response has been received and it was agreed to follow this up by telephone, and include an update on this issue in the next meeting.

Action 06/03—An update on communications with the National Acoustic Laboratories to be included on the agenda for the next meeting.

Mr Plummer noted that the development application which the Chair raised with the former NSW Planning Minister, Ms Pru Goward MP, remains under consideration. The proposal would result in an additional 2,000 homes being constructed under one of the busiest flight paths in Australia, and one that is used 24 hours a day. It approved such a development would generate noise complaints which could lead to pressure to alter the noise sharing arrangements under LTOP.

It was agreed that the Chair should write to the new Planning Minister Mr Rob Stokes MP, to make him aware of SACF's views on this proposal.

Mr Stone announced that this would be his last SACF meeting, and thanked the group for the opportunity to work with the community. The Forum noted its appreciation of the contribution Mr Stone has made over the last five years. The Chair added that he could not have had anyone more helpful, more considerate, more knowledgeable and balanced.

Agenda Item 12

Date of next Meeting

It was agreed to hold the next meeting on Friday 28 August.

The Chair encouraged Members to encourage members of their community to put forward questions for consideration under the Community Question Time agenda item.

End of Meeting.



J. Alexander Chair
B. Abrams Representing the Board of Airline Representatives of Australia
J. Bihary Representing the Member for Bennelong
G. Bousamra Representing the Member for Watson
J. Clarke Representing the Member for Bradfield
D. Cobley-Finch Representing the Member for Sydney
K. Cruden Representing the Member for Grayndler
M. Gardiner Mayor of Marrickville
B. Hayes Representing the Member for North Sydney
K. Hill Community Representative for the South
M. Patrinos Community Representative for the West
J. Patterson Representing the City of Botany Council
J. Pinczewski Representing the Member for Wentworth
T. Plummer Representing the Sydney Airport Corporation Limited
K Schreiber Representing the Sutherland Shire
K. Welsh Representing the Mayor of Leichhardt

Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development

S. Stone General Manager, Aviation Environment
J. Collis Aircraft Operations Section, SACF Secretariat
A. Sutherland Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development

Airservices Australia

E. Keenan Manager Community Relations  
W. Lewis Air Traffic Control Line Manager


S. Agagiotis Randwick City Council
K. Allcott Sydney Airport Corporation Limited
S. Annand Board of Airline Representatives of Australia
P. Holt Besmaw Pty Ltd
G. King Rockdale City Council
I. Koernicke Sutherland Shire Council
M. Laverty Office of the Member for Cook
G. Powell NSW Business Chamber
L. Sierakowski Office of the Member for North Sydney
W. Southcott No Aircraft Noise Party
D. Stani Overnight Aircraft Operators Association
P. Thorne No Aircraft Noise Party
T. Williams Sydney
M. Wilson Office of the Member for Summer Hill