Noise pollution at the Rotterdam The Hague Airport
Lammert van Raan
There is a covenant between the government, municipalities, the Rotterdam The Hague Airport and citizens about the number of night flights at the Rotterdam The Hague Airport. This number is 849 take-offs and landings between 23.00 hrs and 7.00 hrs a year. However, in practice there are 1,300 night flights a year. This breaches the private life of citizens who live close to the airport. The MP who states this asks the Minister of Infrastructure and Water Issues to react and also claims that it is expensive to access the courts for an issue such as this one. The Minister acknowledges the figures, but says that the increase in flights is only due to the use of trauma helicopters at night. This is something that should not be denied, even if the private life of citizens suffers due to this. Moreover, the figures that have been agreed upon, were only agreed upon in an informal covenant, and not laid down in legislation, so that these figures cannot be enforced, which was also confirmed by an earlier judgement by the courts. The earlier judgement and the Dutch legal system ensure that there is always access to the courts, there may even be legal aid. As the figures cannot be enforced at the moment, the Minister will see if she can lay down these figures (without taking into account the number of flights by trauma helicopters) in law, so that they can be enforced.