Noise against aircraft noise

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Appeals by opponents of the airport expansion in Munich to the court

If airports are to be expanded, this usually leads to heated discussions, which often result in a legal dispute. In addition to health aspects that are due to noise pollution, opponents also usually give environmental protection considerations as reasons for rejection. This also happened in the process of building the new runway at Munich Airport.

Although, according to media reports, a judgment on the planned airport expansion can only be expected in February or March, the plaintiffs assessed the previous process of the third runway at Munich Airport as confirmation of their arguments. In particular, there was no need for enlargement and therefore “the interference with the rights of the plaintiffs cannot be justified,” quotes the news agency “dpa”, arguing the lawyer of the municipalities concerned before the Bavarian Administrative Court. The noise pollution caused by jets flying over residential areas is therefore unacceptable. He asked the judges to withdraw the building permit for the 1.2 billion euro airport expansion. The lawyer of the Bund Naturschutz in Bayern e. V. (BN).

Destruction of nature and health risks The chairman of the BN, Hubert Weiger, stated in a final lecture before the administrative court that the third runway should not have been approved at all in view of the "severity of the destruction of nature and the health". The concerns were not refuted in the entire legal process, Weiger continued. Given the fact that the number of flight movements fell back to the level of 2003 because the machines are now larger and better utilized, there was no additional need to be identified here, emphasized the BN chairman. In his closing statement, Weiger came to the conclusion that the planned expansion contradicts all goals for the protection of people and nature, to which states have committed themselves at national and international level. According to the BN species protection officer Christine Margraf, this also applies to species protection, because bird extinction will continue with the expansion.

Noise pollution particularly affects children The chief administrative officers of the surrounding municipalities commented more on the aspect of aircraft noise, which means considerable pollution for their residents. So the Mayor of Freising, Tobias Eschenbacher, explained that he could understand the concerns well. Citizens are also unsettled because of the risk of falling over the urban area. The Mayor of Berglern, Herbert Knur, criticized the fact that the additional aircraft noise primarily affected the children and that adequate noise protection was not guaranteed even in the dormitories. The charge of the Simons and Werner Oruche-Brand from Freising, who act as private plaintiffs against the airport expansion, is similar. "Please take into account the concerns of thousands of children," said her appeal to the judges.

No need for an additional runway The complaining citizens, environmental protection organizations and affected communities agree that the underlying forecasts of flight movements are incorrect and do not reflect reality. The growth predicted here will never be achieved given the actually declining flight movements. Christian Magerl, member of the state parliament of the Greens and Freising BN district chairman, emphasized that the airport company FMG was "grenade wrong" with its forecasts and that the minus in flight movements would continue instead. Here, the FMG is only "about a luxury expansion for Lufthansa, but not about the need," Magerl continues. How the judgment of the court will turn out can be eagerly awaited. (fp)

Image: Dieter Hopf /

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Video: Aircraft noise animation 1

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