IAOPA eNews January 2014
IAOPA Europe - 2013 in Review | AOPA-Japan Conducts Joint Safety Workshop | IAOPA Pays Tribute to Christian Schleifer-Heingartner | China Announces First Step in Relaxing Restrictions on GA | Kyrgyzstan Delegation Visits IAOPA | Ambassador from Czech Republic Visits AOPA HQ | The Air Safety Institute debuts “Flying the Weather” Video Series
By IAOPA European Senior Vice President, Martin Robinson
The workload of IAOPA Europe continues to expand but I feel we are making some progress even if at times it feels glacial.
The three main subjects for IAOPA in Europe are:
- Single Europe Sky (SES),
- Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR); and
- EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency).
During 2013 IAOPA Europe was engaged in work developing a better framework for the regulation of GA in Europe. Under the leadership of DGAC France, a proposal was developed which was endorsed by the EASA Management Board as well as the EASA Committee. The output of this is referred to as the GA road map and it contains the principle and objectives surrounding proportionate rule making based on a risk based approach. IAOPA has over many years sort a process which includes an understanding of the risks on the part of the regulator and it seems that we are now moving in that direction. We certainly have seen a change in attitude at EASA which we welcome including a greater willingness to engage with us in problem solving.
This has led to the establishment of a specific safety standard consultative committee (SSCC) GA group – the first task is to look at, revise and edit the existing rules to make sure they are consistent with the agreed principles. Michael Erb and Jacob Pedersen are the representatives who are engaged in the work of this group on behalf of IAOPA Europe. The workload of the SSCC GA sub-committee will expand during 2014.
Dan Ackerman remains very active on maintenance issues and we thank him for his efforts on our behalf. Controlling the costs associated with continued airworthiness / maintenance is an issue close to our member hearts
In 2013 there was a change of leadership at EASA as Patrick Goudou retired and was replaced by Patrick Ky as the new agency director; who is well known to the leadership of IAOPA Europe.
IAOPA Europe believes Patrick Ky has the necessary personality and skills to take EASA forward particularly in ATM Safety and we look forward to working with him.
Single European Sky
The Commission has developed another package of legislation called SES II plus. The focus of SES is the Performance Scheme which is overseen by the Performance Review Body (PRB) to ensure ANSPs, which are monopolies, deliver the improved performance which is required by the network. Member States are required annually to set performance targets which are agreed through the PRB and the member States can be fined if they fail to deliver on those agreed targets. This is also linked to the Network Manager which is one of Eurocontrol’s functions. All of this has the ability to impact on some GA operations particularly the IFR ones.
Matthew Baldwin recently stated that getting the system running efficiently is a priority to improving profitability of airlines whose profit margins per seat are smaller than a cup of coffee at Starbucks. It is easy to see how GA can be forgotten and part of IAOPA’s role in Europe is to make sure that GA is given proper consideration and to do this we need to increase our political lobbying efforts in Brussels. This is important since the EU has increased the budget for Transport from €8 billion to €27 billion. Aviation will get its share approximately €7billion over the next 7 years. However, most of this is earmarked for large infrastructure improvements. Under Horizon 20/20 there is further R&D funds being made available. IAOPA would like to see some of this (a small amount) being allocated for some specific GA projects and we intend to make the case again in 2014.
When I said that sometimes Europe moves at a glacial pace I could have been referring solely to SESAR which to date has done virtually nothing for GA. Whilst Michael Erb and I will have a meeting in January 2014 with the acting director, it remains to be seen exactly what SESAR may be considering.
The Commission is planning to bring forward Pilot Common Projects as a regulation. The consultation has begun and will run until 28th February 2014. It includes issues such as SWIM, PBN and trajectory management. This work is for future improvements in order to meet the airspace demands in the 2014-2024 time frames.
On 11th June 2013 the European Parliament and the European Council issued a proposal amending EC 216/2008 (BR) in the field of aerodromes ATM / ANS COM (2013) 409 final 2013/0137 (COD) incorporating SESII plus when in 2009 EASA’s remit was extended to include ATM and aerodromes created duplication between SES and the Basic Regulation. This was done to avoid any possible gaps in regulations. Therefore, the main purpose behind this latest proposal is to remove any overlap between SES and EASA Regulations.
Other bits of the Basic Regulation which are being amended include EASA’s name change to European Union Agency for Aviation (EAA). You will notice safety has been dropped (see ART 17.1).
The composition of the management board is amended along with the majority rules (see ART 37 & 37a) – a new Executive Board will be established – and it is likely to consist of the Management Board Chairman, Commission (DGMov) plus three additional members of the Management Board ( how these will be selected we do not know).
The Article 62 evaluation is the requirement for an independent external evaluation of EASA once every five years. The goal it seems is for more Europe - not less! It also looks like less input from member States is the desire; we will watch with interest how States will react to the proposal for more use of Delegated Acts! Industry and States appear to be split on this too!
Since the Lisbon Treaty, European institutions may only adopt one of five types of Acts:
- A Regulation,
- A Directive,
- A Decision,
- A Recommendation,
- An Opinion, (regulations, directives, and decisions are binding acts).
If there is more use of Delegated Acts then the Transport Committee of the European Parliament will need to be more robust – particularly when it comes to red tape and costs of regulations.
Delegated Acts allow the commission to amend annexes – however these delegated acts must only refer to non-essential elements whereas essential elements must be governed by the legislative act itself. The Basic Regulation which governs civil aviation in Europe is also known as the essential requirements whereas EASA delivers the implementing rules. Our understanding is that where the Commission uses delegated acts it would not need to go through the comitology process which means we lose an opportunity to lobby at the national level as it is the member States which attend!
So whilst 2013 has been a busy year for IAOPA Europe, 2014 will be equally busy as the Parliament and the Commission changes. The Parliament will break for elections from about May, after the election we will have an all new Transport Committee – there will also be a new Transport Commissioner.
IAOPA Europe will continue to work with other associations like EBAA and GAMA to further the interests of all members in Europe in the years ahead.
AOPA-Japan Conducts Joint Safety Workshop
On 16 November, 2013, 15 civilian aircraft received special permission to land on MCAS Iwakuni to attend the first MCAS Iwakuni - Japanese Bilateral Aviation Safety Workshop. Including those participants that used ground transportation, a total of 72 civilian pilots attended. At the workshop, the airspace structure of Iwakuni Radar Approach Area and typical procedures used by Iwakuni and surrounding airports were explained. Current bi-lateral plans indicate that by 2017 the U.S. Navy plans to move its carrier air wing from NAF Atsugi to MCAS Iwakuni. Therefore, the air traffic in the Iwakuni area is expected to increase dramatically. The Workshop, which is designed to improve safety in the airspace shared by military and civilian aircraft, was planned and conducted jointly between MCAS Iwakuni and AOPA-Japan.
Christian Schleifer-Heingartner, a former AOPA-Austria member has stepped down from his position as the President of the Air Navigation Commission at ICAO. He has represented Austria at ICAO for the last four years. For two of those years he had the distinguished post of President of the Air Navigation Commission. Upon arriving in Canada he validated his flying credentials and on many occasions he gave fellow ICAO members the opportunity to ride along in his favourite airplane – Cirrus.
Christian was a staunch supporter of General Aviation and IAOPA within ICAO because he understood an aircraft owner’s and pilot’s difficulties and acted to minimize those. He did not first have to have challenges explained to him, and he was always prepared to suggest a way forward. During his tenure the General Aviation Study Group came into being at ICAO which has had the effect of strengthening GA’s voice within ICAO.
For his farewell party the Air Navigation Commissioners, members of the ICAO Secretariat and spouses, boarded a yellow school bus in front of the ICAO building and were transported to the Canadian Aviation Heritage Center in Ste. Anne de Bellevue. The evening included a tour of the Center’s exhibits – aircraft, artefacts and original artworks – and included a catered traditional Austrian meal. A good time was had by all 65 attendees.
In recognition of his work and support IAOPA presented Christian with a model of the archetypical Canadian bush plane – a de Havilland Beaver – during his farewell party held in the Canadian Aviation Heritage Center. A float version of the aircraft was chosen because Christian could not fulfil his dream of obtaining a float endorsement before leaving Canada, so now he may not lose sight of his dream. The inscription on the model’s plaque reads: “Christian – Thanks for your support of General Aviation at ICAO. IAOPA 2013”.
China Announces First Step in Relaxing Restrictions on GA
The Civil Aviation Authority of China (CAAC) has released new regulations on GA flight approval and management that will relax a rule requiring government approval of most general aviation flights. The law is enacted to promote the development of general aviation in China and maintain national independence and security. The rule change, to take effect December 1, comes in connection with a broad package of economic and legal reforms announced by the Chinese government on November 15, and will narrow the scope of flights that require approval. For aircraft registered and operated by Chinese citizens there is no longer a need for GA flights to receive approval from the military to fly. Instead a flight plan submitted pre-flight will be enough for approval. This will cut the time required to fly from days to hours. While this is only the first step in developing general aviation in China it represents a significant step forward.
Kyrgyzstan Delegation Visits IAOPA
IAOPA Headquarters in conjunction with the Air Safety Institute hosted a delegation from Kyrgyzstan to explain the benefits of general aviation and offer guidance on how to develop GA within the country. The delegates were part of a US State Department exchange program sponsored by the World Trade Center Institute Professional Exchange and Program Development Office. Members of the delegation were in the US to gain insight into how to enhance air safety, security, and the reliability of air transportation and were able to experience flying in a general aviation aircraft which truly was the highlight of their visit to the US.
AOPA President Mark Baker and IAOPA Headquarters staff hosted a delegation from the Embassy of the Czech Republic at AOPA US Headquarters to talk about general aviation past, present, and future. The delegation was led by the Czech Ambassador to the United States Petr Gandalovic and Brigidier General Jiri Verner, the Defense, Military and Air Attache. Both individuals are pilots and thanks to the assistance of Bruce Landsberg, President AOPA Foundation, were able to go flying. The meeting was a great success and all agreed to work together to promote general aviation not only in the Czech Republic, but Europe as well.
Pilots are constantly evaluating the weather when flying, including before takeoff, en route, and before landing. But unless you’re a seasoned meteorologist and well-trained in interpreting and applying practical weather theory, weather is one of the more difficult elements to grasp. Whether you face a flight review or need to assess the big weather picture before a long cross-country flight, you might enjoy some help from ASI’s “Flying the Weather” video series, aimed at deciphering weather phenomena and their impact on flight. In this first installment, “Flying the Weather: Airframe Icing,” AOPA Pilot editor Tom Horne discusses how airframe ice affects the aircraft's handling and that all important facet of flying, lift. Stay tuned for upcoming installments in this new series that will help you understand the critical aspects of flying the weather.
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