Wednesday, 1 September 1999 REPRESENTATIVES P7383
Sydney Airport Community Forum
Dr NELSON (Bradfield) (7.45 p.m.)-I rise to speak tonight not as the member for Bradfield so
much but as the Chairman of the Sydney Airport Community Forum. Although it is not a job I coveted,
it is one to which I was appointed in October last year ostensibly to oversee the implementation of govern-ment policy in relation to Sydney airport.
Like all the issues that I come across, I always approach them with an open mind, examine the facts, examine the arguments both for and against any particular proposi-tion and try to present, as honestly and as effectively as I can, the facts as they are.
The government, prior to the March 1996 election when it was elected to office, developed a policy for
air traffic management for Sydney proper called 'Putting people first'.
That policy had two essential pillars.
The first pillar of that policy was to develop, in consultation with the community and the aviation industry including Airservices Australia, a long-term- noise sharing-operating plan for Sydney airport, known as LTOP. The essence of that plan was, as distinct from the north-south concentrated parallel operations under the Laurie Brereton regime from the time of the opening of the third runway, to try to distribute as fairly as possible air traffic throughout Sydney.
The second pillar of the government's policy was to construct a second airport at Badgerys Creek. I will just read from the government's policy:
The Coalition is committed to building a second major airport in the Sydney region.
The Coalition will ensure that Sydney West Airport is developed to a full international standard as a matter of priority, subject to the results of the environmental impact statement.
We will work closely with the New South Wales Govern-ment, local authorities and the private sector to ensure the necessary road and rail infrastructure is developed and to ensure that the land around the airport is zoned appropriate-ly.
At the time the Australian Labor Party criticised the coalition parties not because they were committed to building a second airport subject to the EIS but because the coalition was proposing to conduct
The Labor Party at the time criticised us for not simply proceeding to build the airport on the basis of the 1985 EIS. Well, $12.4 million later, we now have an environmental impact statement and an audit which essentially gives the environmental clearance for the government to implement its policy.
One of the other things that needs to be emphasised is that it was not only a long-term operating plan but also a commitment to maintain continued access of regional planes to Sydney airport, to introduce and implement a cap on the number of hourly movements that would go through Sydney's airport and also to implement a curfew which goes from 2300 to 0600 hours.
One of the propositions that has been proposed by some people in the air traffic industry is that
regional planes or light planes which occupy 40 per cent of the slots at Kingsford Smith can instead be
sent to Bankstown airport.
One thing that seems very reasonable to those of us who do not understand how air traffic is managed at Sydney airport is that 'Kingsford Smith airport can be run more efficiently'. Those who say that are quite right.
If you want to run north-south parallel oper-ations 24 hours a day with a precision radar monitor
to the north of the airport, you can run up to 120 movements an hour.
I have spent 18 months of my life fighting with Airservices Australia to get one simple thing-a 2,000-foot turn at the western end of the east-west runway-and after 18 months Airservices Australia have said they cannot do it.
The reason they cannot do it is that they would have to re-sectorise Bankstown airspace.
It is a nonsense and a lie for anyone to suggest that you can send 30 movements an hour into Bankstown
airport and not have to resort to north-south parallel operations at Kingsford Smith airport.
To send 30 movements an hour of instrument rated planes to Bankstown airport means-and make no mistake about this-the closure of the east-west runway.
If the government adopted those recommendations it would be breaking not one but two of its policies:
One would be to break the commitment to build Badgerys Creek airport which would serve, amongst other things, the economic development of one of the most impover- ished parts of Western Sydney; secondly, it would break the important long-term operating plan which we spent over a year developing in consultation with the Sydney community. (Time expired)
End of Hansard
Reader please note:- Brendon Nelson is not elected to any seat in Western Sydney and is not a Minister with any portfolio coverage for Western Sydney, he is the chairman for the Sydney Airport Community Forum ( S.A.C.F. federal government). This committee does not even own is name as they forgot to register the name.
The name S.A.C.F. Incorporated is legally owned by an alliance of anti-airport groups who did register the name - including groups fighting expansion at Kingsford Smith Airport and yet to be constructed airport at Badgerys Creek.
They do not have (S.A.C.F. federal government) any community organisations represented on their committee and have never invited any to join, including groups from Western Sydney, even though this has long been sought by the community groups membership.
Never-the- less Dr. Nelsons committee continues to ignore the wishes of the community of Sydney, and promotes the construction of an airport at Badgerys Creek
He is also denying the entire state of N.S.W. a choice of realistic airport service.
The E.I.S. he speaks of is well over one metre high and now the biggest E.I.S. in the world with 15,650 submissions from the public, 99% of which were totally against the proposal.
The part where he said the E.I.S. cleared the site to go ahead is false as the E.I.S. made no recommendation either way, a recommendation for the final E.I.S. various options, was not part of the consultants brief.
The fact is that the E.I.S., and Dr. Nelson have ignored critical elements of airport operational safety, Sydney Basin environmental sabotage, and massive negative impact on his own constituents is reflective of his own pro-development bias.
Even so, the E.I.S. has shown very clear reasons why there must not be an airport at Badgerys Creek-
example:- restoration of the Sydney electricity supply in the event of a crash " May take months or years" & Sydney Water do not have methods for the removal of fuel product from our water supply at Warragamba Dam, ........etc etc.
The only document that gave a rosy aspect to the proposal and E.I.S. was the free public summary of which there are some 64 pages December 1997.
The full E.I.S. book sets had to be purchased at considerable cost from the commonwealth book shop.
There were 3 summarys produced over the duration of the E.I.S. study, all very similar in content- or lack thereof.
A summary should summerise all the good and bad parts of the major issues to give a fore/against approach and inform the reader so that a balanced and clear decision can be made.
The Summarys presented by the E.I.S. have not done this.
The only way to get a balanced view of the proposal is to read the full E.I.S. and find the relevant material and judge for yourself, as there is a lot hidden in the main reports.
The shear size of the task, reading the E.I.S. would put a lot of people off as well as the cost of what would be a expensive door stop once fininshed.
The summary is not a true summary of the E.I.S. in any respect.
Addendum -The 1985 E.I.S. done in the Hawke and Keating years was about 125 millimetres or 12.5 centimetres thick and was the basis of a selection process involving a total of 10 sites including Holsworthy which was placed at number 9 and this E.I.S. was used as the basis to select Badgerys Creek with rubbery environment knowlege for this period of time. (1985)