Qantas Ceases Cairns Southerly Departure Trial

CAIRNS, 04 September 2007

Qantas said today it would cease its trial of flying over the city of Cairns on Monday, 10 September.

Qantas Chief Risk Officer Rob Kella said competing environmental issues were behind the airline's decision to stop the trial.

"After regular consultation with the Cairns Airport Environment Committee, we decided that although the RNP technology used for this trial reduces carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide emissions, the benefits do not outweigh the significant noise impact on residents," Mr Kella said.

"We will continue to work with the Cairns Airport Environment Committee to evaluate other RNP flight paths we have introduced in Cairns that are providing promising environmental results."

Mr Kella said that achieving balance would be an increasing challenge as Qantas progressed its new environmental initiatives.

"Inevitably, actions we take to mitigate one environmental impact may have an adverse effect on other areas.

"Flight paths are a perfect example of this. The most fuel efficient flight path may decrease carbon dioxide emissions but increase the number of people exposed to aircraft noise, as has been the case in Cairns.

"For this reason, airlines will have to coordinate and evaluate very carefully any environmental initiatives they introduce."

Issued by Qantas Corporate Communication (3649)