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European ATC and the "environment"

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European ATC and the "environment"

Old 15th Jun 2007, 09:15
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European ATC and the "environment"

As you can see by the article attached below, the EC is sincerley committed to reducing emissions, saving fuel, blah blah blah...I must then ask why we had to hold for 20 minutes on arrival to FRA due a thunderstorm over PSA (40 NM south)??? The airport weather was perfectly clear and some simple vectoring would have resolved the issue. German ATC is extremely efficient, however, they often deal poorly with fairly simple weather phenomenon. Best wishes spending that 1.6 billion euro. Who pays for the 3 tonnes of fuel we burned? Oh yeah, we do from our yearly "bonus". Anyone for privatised ATC??? Hopefully they can also resolve national airspace issues so that direct routing becomes the norm instead of zigzagging all around Europe whilst changing squawk every 5 minutes. Cheers.

EC, European aerospace industry pledge 1.6 billion to environmental R&D
The European Commission yesterday proposed the creation of a 1.6 billion ($2.14 billion) "Clean Sky" Joint Technology Initiative, which it called a "major public-private research partnership to reduce the environmental impact of aviation."
The JTI's objective is to reduce the industry's carbon dioxide emissions by 40%, nitrous oxide emissions by 60% and noise by 50% through the delivery of "innovative technologies and solutions" developed in time to be incorporated into "the major airline fleet renewal cycle" projected for 2015.
The EC's Seventh Research Framework Program will contribute 800 million, a sum that will be matched by industry, the Commission said, adding that seven "major" European aerospace firms committed last July to participate in the JTI.
Separately, the EC approved startup aid to promote the development of Antwerp as a regional airport. Carriers may get a three-year aid package for opening new routes or operating additional rotations on existing services from Antwerp.
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Old 15th Jun 2007, 11:01
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Smile Delays in the friendly skies...

Sodapop -
I understand your frustration, but as you know well, we in the flight deck only have the "small picture" of the whole problem, traffic around us and what we see or know is in our vicinity... These guys on the ground, in front of their radar scopes, have the "big picture" that we dont know about. Maybe
they deal with some 50 departures, and 50 arrivals at EDDF, and work a dozen of different VHF frequencies, to vector traffic in according with acual conditions. And as you say yourself, the German ATC is quite efficient.
Zig-zagging around and change transponder codes is frustrating, I agree. In my old days, I recall departing KJFK for KLAX. and passing FL240, receiving a "cleared INS direct to HEC" some 2,000 NM away, the initial VOR on the arrival route to KLAX... through a dozen of ARTCCs (FIRs/UIRs)... Remember, each nation in EU still wants control of their airspace, and it is a busy airspace as well.
I often fly from South America to Europe, and hardly ever required to hold anywhere, most often, we might be required to slow down to Mach .83 or accelerate to Mach .86 to accommodate traffic to a same destination and
sequencing for arrival... (in supposedly "third world airspace", far from the efficiency of North America or Europe).
Buenos Aires might give me a "immediate clearance to start engines for initial FL270, or expect 20 minutes delay for start if requesting FL290"... and honest, we all do, in the air or the ground, all to save a few tonnes of crude oil billed at $70/barrel as per OPEC policies...
After all, as per my contract as pilot, I am paid by the greatest of either scheduled times, or actual block times... and our cabin staff as well... Saving on fuel costs, right... this is to try that our airline does not declare bankruptcy and avoid to spend my time on Pprune in hope of finding a new underpaid position somewhere around Kabul or Kandahar...
Happy contrails, Sodapop...
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Old 15th Jun 2007, 11:17
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Sodapop, your statement is valid but don't blame ATC. It's not all that simple. The airspace around FRA is extremely complex. ATC don't have the freedom to vector a/c anywhere they want. The problem needs to be addressed by the powers responsible for the ridiculously complex airspace system air traffic controllers have to work with, not only in Germany but surrounding countries too. And that more often than not comes down to politics rather than common sense. But that's another story!
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