IAOPA fights radio payout
Air Navigation Service Providers
are again pushing for the adoption of 8.33 MHz-spaced radios by
all air traffic, which IAOPA believes is a misconceived idea
designed to cover the inadequacies of the frequency allocation
ANSPs say they face a 20 percent shortage of radio
frequencies and want all IFR traffic to install 8.33 MHz radios by
2009, and all VFR traffic by 2012. The estimated cost for ground
and air equipment would be in excess of 700 million euros.
Dr Michael Erb of AOPA Germany told the Regional Assembly that the
real problem is inefficient allocation of frequencies. At the
moment every country in Europe allocates its own radio
frequencies, leading to inevitable overlap, waste and duplication.
IAOPA believes all European frequencies should be allocated by a
single central office. If that were to be done, Europe would have
vastly more frequencies than it required, even at the most
optimistic traffic growth figures.
efficient and capable digital radios are on the horizon, possibly
as early as 2015 – so aviation would be looking at being forced to
buy 8.33 radios by 2012, then junking them for digital radios
within a few years.
Michael Erb also represents IAOPA on
SESAR, the body that is designing Europe's future airspace, where
airlines are pushing for priority to be given to those who pay the
highest Eurocontrol fees – something IAOPA strongly opposes. The
airlines are also causing trouble for GA at EASA's OPS.001 working
group, where the Association of European Airlines is demanding
that general aviation be excluded from all airspace in which
airliners fly on the grounds that GA pilots are "not trained to
proper standards". In addition, the AEA has stated that all
business aircraft should operate to identical requirements as the
Jacob Pedersen of AOPA Denmark, who represents
IAOPA on OPS.001, told the Assembly that IAOPA had been approached
by regional airports, particularly in Germany, who realised that
the AEA's proposals would kill off the business aviation on which
they rely and who wanted IAOPA to represent them at OPS.001 –
which it has agreed to do.
16 days left to comment on the EASA MDM.032 group's Advance
Notice of Proposed Amendment (ANPA), which will establishes a
baseline for EASA's regulation of general aviation in future.
MDM.032, on which IAOPA is represented by Jacob Pedersen, has
spent six months reviewing all aspects of GA. The ANPA can be
read on the IAOPA-Europe website, www.iaopa-eur.org.
There's also a comment form on the site – EASA will only
consider comments submitted on the correct form.
believes that MDM.032 is an attempt to reinvent the wheel when a
better idea would have been to address what is wrong with the
current system, but is fully involved in the group and has a
direct line to the European Parliament in the person of Arunas
Degutis of AOPA Lithuania, who is an MEP and Shadow Raporteur on
Definitions such as what constitutes
a complex aircraft rest with the EU parliament, not EASA, and
changes must be made at Parliamentary level. IAOPA is working to
get the EU to ditch the term 'recreational operation', which it
believes is an inaccurate description that would be a gift to
opponents of aviation. Pedersen told the Assembly that 'light
aircraft operation' was proposed as an alternative. Blazej Krupa
of AOPA Poland pointed out that elsewhere in EU legislation, the
term 'recreational' has tax implications from which GA would
IAOPA says the current proposal for a nine-seat
limit should be raised to 19 seats, because that's the break
point at which a cabin attendant is required. Below that, a
flight can be a single-person operation, and should not be
subject to more stringent requirements for management
procedures. In addition, it wants the restriction on turbojets
removed because in the near future, small, efficient and
environmentally-friendly turbines may become available, and
changing the law later to allow their use would be difficult.
the ANPA, simplified maintenance and airworthiness systems are
seen as being much more beneficial to GA than new licensing
procedures. EASA is proposing that Assessment Bodies like IAOPA
may issue licences instead of national authorities, but there is
some question as to whether assessment bodies for licences are
needed at all. Martin Robinson of AOPA-UK asked why an examiner
could not issue a licence immediately the pilot passes a flying
test – that would be the simplest and least expensive option. If
it is decided that assessment bodies are required, then IAOPA
should be involved in order to make sure the work is done at
cost, rather than providing profits for any commercial entity.
copy your response to the ANPA to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tongues of fire
language proficiency requirements will have a devastating affect
on general aviation across Europe, say AOPAs from non-English
speaking countries. Pilots are to be forced to attain Level Four
English before being allowed to fly internationally – a level of
comprehension which far exceeds the abilities of most GA pilots.
AOPA has lobbied for the requirements to be reduced for general
aviation, but ICAO, dominated as it is by English-speaking
countries, has refused. Dr Michael Erb of AOPA-Germany says: "The
effect will be that most German pilots will be restricted to
flying at home, to Austria or perhaps to Switzerland. But if they
want to fly to Poland, for instance, it will be more difficult
than it was in the days of the Iron Curtain."
Website give and take
new website for IAOPA Europe is now established at www.iaopa.eu
and aims to operate as an information resource for AOPA members
across the Continent. One of the useful features is a comparison
of avgas prices at airfields in dozens of countries, to which
all members are invited to contribute. The website will
eventually contain useful information on hundreds of airfields
across Europe, and again, members are invited to contribute
information about their local airfields in order to populate the
Old magazine promotion
has apologised to European AOPAs after mistakenly using old
letters in a marketing campaign for its magazine AOPA Pilot which
may have given the impression that magazine subscribers enjoyed
the benefits of AOPA membership.
IAOPA's John Sheehan said
the promotional material that was mistakenly sent out pre-dated
1996, when a partnership agreement between AOPA-US and other
national AOPAs established guidelines for such promotions. The
marketing material has now been rewritten to refer to 'readers'
rather than 'members' and remove the offer of access to 'members
AOPA-US has huge marketing muscle, and
European AOPAs are often approached by members of AOPA-US who
mistakenly believe that the benefits of AOPA-US membership extend
beyond the boundaries of the United States. John Sheehan assured
the Assembly that marketing for AOPA Pilot in Europe would in
future urge pilots to join their national AOPAs.
New vice president
Gerber of AOPA Switzerland has been appointed Vice President of
the IAOPA European region to replace Klaus Zeh of AOPA Germany,
who has stepped down with almost two years of his term still to
The appointment was made by IAOPA President Philip
Boyer. An election for the position is expected to be held at the
end of 2007.
The Regional Assembly accepted the
appointment. Concern was expressed that IAOPA's representation in
Brussels may be less effective if run by a Vice President from a
state that was not an EU member, and the delegates requested
unanimously that Deputy Vice President Martin Robinson of AOPA UK
continue his work with the European Union and EASA.
ADS-B for General Aviation
is inviting interested GA pilot to a one-day workshop on the
subject of ADS-B for General Aviation at Eurocontrol headquarters
in Brussels on November 21st.
It says the aim of the
workshop is to enhance co-operation between the GA community and
the CASCADE programme, which is Eurocontrol's plan to reduce air
traffic delays and increase safety. Eurocontrol says the workshop
"intends to create an inventory of institutional, operational and
technical issues in relation to GA ADS-B equipage and to define
associated actions for the programme and the GA community."
for the workshop, which is free, can be done through www.eurocontrol.int/events,
where you will also find an updated agenda.
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