[ STARTSIDAN ]
The association was formed to fight the environmental noise pollution being suffered by thousands of residents of Upplands Väsby (a northern suburb of Stockholm). This air traffic noise is a result of the arrogant and inconsiderate manner in which Swedavia is now operating Stockholm's main airport - Arlanda.
In in the Spring of 2003 Stockholm Arlanda airport opened a 3rd runway. This despite the fact that the capacity requirements of the airport were more than adequately supported then (and now) by the existing two runways.
Upplands Väsby is a suburb of Stockholm located approximately 10km directly south of the new runway. During runway planning and construction residents were assured that aircraft would not pass over central Upplands Väsby on approach, but be directed around the built-up area. Indeed, the environmental conditions set in place for the operation of the airport are also written under this assumption. Unfortunately, Väsby residents were misled.
During peak traffic periods the new runway is used intensively - with northerly winds, all arriving aircraft are led over central Upplands Väsby. Many aircraft generate significant disturbance with noise levels over 70dB(A) and in some cases over 80dB(A). In addition, other areas can be affected by departing aircraft (particularly at night).
Despite protests from thousands of residents, Stockholm airport have continued to extensively use the new runway and flightpath over Upplands Väsby. Worse still, whilst viable alternative flightpaths and runway usage patterns have been demonstrated, Stockholm Arlanda airport shows little willingness to make any significant changes.
The association is fighting against the airport authorities in a number of legal cases. The environmental courts earlier decided that Arlanda must work towards stopping use of its current disturbing flightpath over central Upplands Väsby and that by 2018 they must not fly over at all. Sadly, despite the obligation to work towards this goal, Arlanda instead put huge efforts into a new application to the environmental courts in order to remove this restriction. They succeeded, but with the new limitation that whenever it is possible they should avoid the flightpath directly over Upplands Väsby. This new limitation seems to be largely ignored (or 'interpreted' by the airport to mean that they can do as they wish) and noise disruption has further increased.
Today Arlanda rarely has the need for the capacity of their three runways and thus could easily avoid flying into their 3rd runway when there are southerly winds, yet they continue to do so for large parts of the day. By way of comparison it is worth noting that Arlanda still has fewer aircraft movements (starts and landings) and fewer passengers than many airports with fewer runways (and Gatwick, though an extreme case, manages to handle much more capacity than Arlanda with just one runway). Needless to say, local residents continue to feel let down by local authorities and Swedish environmental laws which the airport seems able to ride roughshod over.