IAOPA eNews August 2010
IAOPA President's Award Presented | UK Authorities Seek Information about GA Airspace Usage | US General Aviation Groups Work Toward an Avgas Solution | UK GA Consultative Committee Provides Feedback to Regulators | New Initiatives for AOPA-China
World Assembly Resolutions Require Action
IAOPA affiliates can be justifiably proud of the 17 resolutions created at the recent Tel Aviv World Assembly. The scope, depth and broad concepts espoused within each of these statements will certainly improve worldwide general aviation activities if publicized and promoted by each AOPA. The words contained in the resolutions—see 2010 IAOPA Resolutions—were carefully crafted by World Assembly delegates but will have little effect unless acted upon by all IAOPA affiliate organizations.
Actions to promote and publicize these resolutions:
- Send a copy of the resolutions to the director and operational heads of your CAA and other appropriate government authorities. In the cover letter accompanying the resolutions ask that action be taken on one or more of those most important to your causes.
- Request interviews with your local and regional aviation media to describe why certain resolutions are important to your organization.
- Inform your members about the resolutions and what they could mean to them in terms of improving their enjoyment and utility of general aviation activities.
- Finally, resolve to promote and advocate the resolutions most important to your organization.
The Secretariat has sent the resolutions to ICAO for their information and action. We will provide updates regarding our progress; please do the same regarding progress with your authorities.
IAOPA Regional Vice President Martin Robinson (left) presents European Commission Director of Air Transportation Daniel Calleja (right) with the IAOPA President's Award for exemplary support of the European general aviation community and responsiveness to its needs. The plaque was originally awarded in absentia at the recent IAOPA 25th World Assembly in Tel Aviv.
The UK CAA, National Air Traffic Service and other organizations that make up the Airspace and Safety Initiative are beginning a survey of Class G airspace users to find out who we are and how they use their airspace. The survey, with which AOPA-UK is closely involved, is being undertaken because AOPA and others have long complained that airspace changes are made without considering the collateral effects that these changes have on existing Class G airspace. In announcing the survey, the CAA says that collecting accurate data "will enable bodies such as the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to have better information available when making decisions on issues like airspace design."
The Authority goes on to say: "The fact that users of Class G airspace are so diverse, ranging from paragliders to civilian operated ex-military jet fighters, and are able to use the airspace without the requirement to register their flight centrally, means that there has historically been very little data collected on what actually occurs. That means decisions on airspace changes and design have to be based on the limited information available, which can result in changes to controlled airspace creating choke points for Class G users."
To make the computer model as accurate as possible, authorities want as many pilots as possible to provide information on the type of flights that they make. A ten-minute online survey has been put together for pilots to complete with their logbook in hand. All information is non-attributable and will only be used for the airspace model. Phil Roberts, Assistant Director of Airspace Policy at the CAA, says: "The more information we can gather, the more accurate the model will be and the more benefit to GA in terms of influencing airspace changes and helping to remove choke points."
Martin Robinson, Chief Executive of AOPA, adds: "Once we have the model up and running, the data it can produce will be extremely useful in showing just how important GA is. It will provide air traffic control organisations and regulators with the true levels of activity when making their proposals and decisions on airspace changes. It is therefore very important that all GA pilots complete the questionnaire."
The US general aviation community, including AOPA-US, is on the path to finding a viable solution to the problem of leaded avgas—together—association heads assured type clubs and the press in a briefing at EAA AirVenture on 27 July.
The industry currently faces two separate challenges regarding leaded avgas: In the short term, it must reduce lead emissions by 2017; and in the long term, it faces the regulatory process set in motion by an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking that has the potential to advance the elimination of lead from avgas. The latter has no deadline and does not spell a certain ban on lead. The coalition is working on short- and long-term efforts. They are working to determine how much the industry can reduce the lead content of avgas without affecting performance. This reduction would address the short-term issue and allow the industry to work toward a long-term solution. Long-term efforts are focused on establishing a path that will allow for the full evaluation of any potential solution to provide the industry with the information needed to make well-informed decisions.
For more information see avgas progress.
Three times each year the UK CAA sits down with general aviation representatives, including AOPA-UK, to get their input regarding strategic issues facing general aviation interests.
During a recent gathering of this group Martin Robinson, AOPA-UK Chief Executive, made the following observations:
- The CAA tries to drive down accidents at all costs—this comes at a great cost to industry. We need to change our motto. "Safety is no accident" is too strict a standard.
- Standards need to be acceptable to all parties—there is currently no common, accepted goal. Is it possible for the group to agree on what is high risk? How will EASA influence our ability to do this?
- The FAA attitude is much more "can do."
- AOPA has been urging EASA to adopt a risk-based approach using quality data. We believe the CAA data is good. The greatest risk is over-regulation by EASA. This will lead to people taking greater risks. We need GA to flourish otherwise there will be no future.
- The industry is under the impression that the CAA is not going to bat on behalf of industry concerns with EASA or the EC. If Austria can do it, why can't UK? The industry is willing to support CAA in its European battles.
The additional items were aired in a free discussion of issues of importance to the general aviation community. Martin Robinson, AOPA-UK Chief Executive, commented, "We are pleased to participate in these meetings and look forward to positive responses to our comments."
AOPA-China became an affiliate of IAOPA in 1999, with Captain Yu Yan En, former chairman of China Southern Airlines, at the helm. The organization has remained active in a quiet manner working to gain greater recognition for general aviation and waiting for the government to recognize this unique form of transportation for what it is.
The organization has recently renewed itself, adding staff and taking a higher profile with the general population. A major article about the new AOPA-China will be featured in the October issue of the IAOPA Bulletin. A delegation from the organization will attend the AOPA-US Summit meeting in Long Beach, CA in November and would like to meet other affiliates there.
The new contact information the organization is:
Yu Yan En, President
Zhang Feng, Vice President
Hu Wei, General Secretary
Liu Liancheng, Technical Director
Wen Feng, Secretary
GuangHua Building, Room 904, No.8 GuangHua Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing
Tel: 010-51285252 to 8043