Highlights from the 2024 aviation symposium

Photo credit: Guryan

by Daniel Fink, MD, Chair, The Quiet Coalition

Last month, I spoke about aviation noise at the University of California, Davis Aviation Noise & Emissions symposium in Palm Springs, California. I was only able to attend one day of the symposium, but all presentations and videos from the lectures are now available online.

My presentation was based on one from a former meeting of the Acoustical Society of America, and recently published in Proceedings of Meetings on Acoustics. I especially appreciated two other presentations that morning. One was from Seattle’s SEA Stakeholder Advisory Round Table and the other was from the founder and president of the Aviation-Impacted Communities Alliance and the Federal Aviation Administration. Both talks emphasized a collaborative approach with airports and airlines, rather than a confrontational one. 

In a grassroots community meeting before the symposium, Santa Clara County Supervisor Cindy Chavez spoke about the county’s multi-year effort to close one of the two airports it operates. Similar efforts to close airports or restrict operations are underway in Santa Monica, California. Another recently failed in East Hampton, Long Island. At the meeting, attorney Steven Taber from the Leech Tishman law firm also spoke. Taber worked for the FAA and now practices law with a focus on aviation-related matters. He said he would prefer that the FAA issue enforceable noise standards, but didn’t think that it was likely.

That resonated with me and my quest to find quieter restaurants in the west Los Angeles area. I wish that local governments would set enforceable sound levels for restaurant noise, but that is also unlikely. Fortunately, people wiser than I are on Quiet Communities’ working group on restaurant noise. They also advocate for a collaborative approach with the hospitality industry.

I hope aviation noise advocates’ efforts and our restaurant noise efforts are both successful.

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