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Mitigation Measures

Mitigation Measures

We are conscious of the need to balance the requirements of operating an international airport that facilitates over 31 million passengers, with the needs of our local communities.

In this regard we meet regularly with different community groups through our community support and sponsorship programme, and more formally with the Dublin Airport Environmental Working Group and the St. Margaret's Community Liaison Group.

We understand that aircraft noise is subjective and personal to each individual. The level of aircraft noise is dependent on the type of aircraft and number of flights. While the number of flights at Dublin Airport has increased since the recession, new aircraft technology has resulted in substantial reductions in aircraft noise from some of the aircraft using the airport.

A number of mitigation measures were proposed by Dublin Airport and/or conditioned by An Bord Pleanála as part of the 2007 planning permission for North Runway.  

These measures are:

daa is complying in full with the condition attached to the planning permission for North Runway which requires the insulation of households within the predicted 63dB LAeq, 16-hour contour, a daytime threshold for noise mitigation also used at other airports.

A separate programme was launched in 2017 for those dwellings impacted by current operations at Dublin Airport.  This new Home Sound Insulation Programme is available to dwellings that are located in the 2016 63dB LAeq, 16-hour noise contour. Dublin Airport has voluntarily implemented this new programme and has also committed to revisit those dwellings which were insulated as part of an earlier 1990s insulation scheme associated with southern runway operations.

Dublin Airport’s insulation schemes compare favorably to those at other airports as all costs associated with the insulation works are being met by Dublin Airport. Some airports provide only replacement windows or secondary glazing, whilst others offer only partial grants towards works which residents then arrange to have undertaken themselves. Dublin Airport is taking responsibility for the full implementation of the insulation programmes, from initial survey through to quality assessment after installation works.

All eligible residents have been contacted directly and there has been an excellent response to the programme. Over 200 local residences are eligible for insulation under these schemes, representing over three times the number of houses Dublin Airport is conditioned to insulate under North Runway’s planning permission.

An voluntary insulation scheme is on offer for all schools and registered pre-schools which fall within the predicted 60dB LAeq, 16-hour contour. The scheme is designed so maximum noise limits within classrooms and school buildings do not exceed 45dB LAeq over 8 hours (a typical school day) after insulation measures are undertaken. 

The following schools and pre-schools have been specified in the planning permission and have all been contacted in relation to the insulation scheme:

• Mary Queen of Ireland, Rivermeade
• Little Moo Moo’s Pre-School
• St. Margaret’s National School
• Nzone Creche & Pre-School
• St Nicholas of Myra NS
• Portmarnock Community School
North Runway will be operated using “Option 7b”, a mode of operation which uses the concept of a preferred runway to lessen the impact of aircraft noise on local communities.  In addition, the aircraft engine test site which was located at the northern end of the airfield has been relocated to the centre of the airfield, away from populated neighbouring areas.

Following extensive engagement with eligible dwelling owners, their representatives, and the Planning Authority and its advisors, several significant enhancements were made to the draft Voluntary Dwelling Purchase Scheme, and it received approval in 2016.  Eligibility for the Scheme is based on the predicted 69dB LAeq 16-hour contour. This is the noise threshold for participation in the voluntary scheme.

Although just five dwellings are located in this contour, daa has voluntarily extended participation in the Scheme to a further 33 residents, thus honouring earlier commitments and having regard to the contours used in the original planning application.

The Scheme is completely voluntary and places no obligation on any resident to participate.  Offers to purchase will include a 30% premium on the current market value of the residence. Property valuations will be based on current operations at Dublin Airport and accordingly valuations will not be affected by the new runway.

Eligible homeowners can have their property independently valued at daa’s cost, and daa will also provide allowances in relation to conveyancing fees, stamp duty, tax advice and moving costs.

The Scheme will remain available for three years after North Runway is operational, and homeowners are also eligible to participate in the Voluntary Residential Noise Insulation Scheme.

This Voluntary Dwelling Purchase Scheme compares very favourably to those at other airports such as Heathrow and Gatwick in the UK.

Noise and flight track monitoring results will be used to re-evaluate noise impacts and the application of mitigation measures every two years.

Operating Conditions

Under North Runway’s current planning permission, there are two conditions associated with airport operations between the hours of 2300 and 0700 which, if implemented, will severely hamper the operational flexibility that currently pertains at Dublin Airport. daa intends to make an application to amend these conditions to facilitate the future operational requirements of Dublin Airport, which is critical to enhancing connectivity for Ireland’s island economy.

As part of that application, daa will propose mitigations it could put in place should a change in operating conditions be implemented.

Ultimately daa’s proposals will be subject to scrutiny by Fingal County Council as the appointed Competent Authority with responsibility for regulating noise at Dublin Airport.