Indicative Airspace Test Cases for Expansion PEIR Noise Assessment

T Henderson made this Environmental Information Regulations request to Heathrow Airport Limited
You only have a right in law to access information about the environment from this authority

Response to this request is long overdue. By law, under all circumstances, Heathrow Airport Limited should have responded by now (details). You can complain by requesting an internal review.

Dear Heathrow Airport Limited,

Under the Environment Information Regulations please supply maps showing the routes of the 10 indicative airspace test case s that were used as the snapshot to model and assess noise levels (exposure and change) as reported in Preliminary Environmental Information Report Chapter 17 issued with the summer 2019 Statutory Consultation.

Yours faithfully,

Tim Henderson

Heathrow Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Thank you for contacting the Community Relations team.

We will respond to you within 5 working days, alternatively you can speak to one of the team on 0800 307 7996.

Best regards,

Heathrow Community Relations

Disclaimer: CONFIDENTIAL NOTICE: The information contained in this email and accompanying data are intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and / or privileged material. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, the use of this information or any disclosure, copying or distribution is prohibited and may be unlawful. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete all copies of this message and attachments.
Please note that Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries ("Heathrow") monitors incoming and outgoing mail for compliance with its Information Security policy. This includes scanning emails for computer viruses. COMPANY PARTICULARS: For particulars of Heathrow companies, please visit http://www.heathrow.com/company.. For information about Heathrow Airport, please visit www.heathrow.com.
Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited is a private limited company registered in England under Company Number 05757208, with the Registered Office at The Compass Centre, Nelson Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, TW6 2GW.

Dear Heathrow Airport Limited,

I would like to point out that the response to my request has been delayed. I understand that, by law, authorities should respond promptly and a guideline of 20 working days is normally appropriate.

I look forward to a response to progress the request.

Yours faithfully,

T Henderson

Heathrow Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Thank you for contacting the Community Relations team.

We will respond to you within 5 working days, alternatively you can speak to one of the team on 0800 307 7996.

Best regards,

Heathrow Community Relations

Disclaimer: CONFIDENTIAL NOTICE: The information contained in this email and accompanying data are intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and / or privileged material. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, the use of this information or any disclosure, copying or distribution is prohibited and may be unlawful. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete all copies of this message and attachments.
Please note that Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries ("Heathrow") monitors incoming and outgoing mail for compliance with its Information Security policy. This includes scanning emails for computer viruses. COMPANY PARTICULARS: For particulars of Heathrow companies, please visit http://www.heathrow.com/company.. For information about Heathrow Airport, please visit www.heathrow.com.
Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited is a private limited company registered in England under Company Number 05757208, with the Registered Office at The Compass Centre, Nelson Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, TW6 2GW.

T Henderson left an annotation ()

I did receive an update on 14th April 2020 from Heathrow Community Relations to my personal email address :

"Dear Tim,

Thank you for your email and apologies for the delay in getting back to you.
I have raised this again with the specific noise team who should be able to provide an answer. Once they respond I will send on to you immediately.
Once again, my apologies for the delay in our response. I will be sure to keep you updated with any developments.
Kind regards,
XXXXXX
Heathrow Community Relations"

I replied to suggest that they reply to the whatdotheyknow site :

"Thanks for the response. It is helpful for whatdoyouknow EIR queries to reply to the website to keep the publicly accessible information in one place and track the progress of matters (rather than reply to individuals). Would you like to repost the response to the site or would you be happy with me annotating the query there with your response ?

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...

Regards,
Tim"

In the absence of a reply I have posted this annotation on 30th April 2020.

Dear Heathrow Airport Limited,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Heathrow Airport Limited's handling of my EIR request 'Indicative Airspace Test Cases for Expansion PEIR Noise Assessment'.

It is now three months since the original request and I have only received acknowledgements to date.

I understand that before I can refer the case to the Information Commissioner's Office, I should direct my complaint first to you to conduct an internal review of the handling of the request.

Accordingly, I write to seek that such an internal review is carried out.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...

Yours faithfully,

T Henderson

Heathrow Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Thank you for contacting the Community Relations team.

We will respond to you within 5 working days, alternatively you can speak to one of the team on 0800 307 7996.

Best regards,

Heathrow Community Relations

Disclaimer: CONFIDENTIAL NOTICE: The information contained in this email and accompanying data are intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and / or privileged material. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, the use of this information or any disclosure, copying or distribution is prohibited and may be unlawful. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete all copies of this message and attachments.
Please note that Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries ("Heathrow") monitors incoming and outgoing mail for compliance with its Information Security policy. This includes scanning emails for computer viruses. COMPANY PARTICULARS: For particulars of Heathrow companies, please visit http://www.heathrow.com/company.. For information about Heathrow Airport, please visit www.heathrow.com.
Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited is a private limited company registered in England under Company Number 05757208, with the Registered Office at The Compass Centre, Nelson Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, TW6 2GW.

Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

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Dear Tim,

Thank you for your enquiry and my apologies for the delay in getting back
to you.

As I mentioned previously, I escalated your email to my colleague who has
since informed me that Heathrow is not currently subject to either EIR or
Freedom of Information requests.

However, our Environmental Team have been able to locate the maps that you
requested, which I have attached for your convenience. The team also
advised me that the maps are presented local-authority by local-authority
in Annex H of Appendix 17.1 of the PEIR; Table 3.2 to 3.117 and Graphics
3.4 to 3.4 - page 258 (link below).

[1]https://aec.heathrowconsultation.com/doc...

Once again, I would like to apologise for the delay in our response, and I
hope that this is helpful. If you have any further questions please do let
me know.

Kind regards

Laura

Heathrow Community Relations

show quoted sections

Dear Community Relations,

Thank you for your response with the attached 8 maps which are the figures mentioned on Page 2 (of 338) of PEIR document Chapter 17 Volume 3 but which were not published in last summer's consultation :

FIGURES
Figure 17.1.1 Areas where noise exposure is above a given LAeq, 16h for all test cases during the daytime
Figure 17.1.2 Areas where noise exposure is above a given LAeq, 8h for all test cases during the night-time
Figure 17.1.3 Areas where noise exposure is above a given LAeq, 16h for any test case during the daytime
Figure 17.1.4 Areas where noise exposure is above a given LAeq, 8h for any test case during the night-time
Figure 17.1.5 Areas where adverse likely significant effects are identified for all test cases during the daytime
Figure 17.1.6 Areas where adverse likely significant effects are identified for all test cases during the night-time
Figure 17.1.7 Areas where adverse likely significant effects are identified for any test case during the daytime
Figure 17.1.8 Areas where adverse likely significant effects are identified for any test case during the night-time

However , these maps are the output from the modelling process whereas my request is for maps of the indicative flight paths of the test cases which would have been used as the snapshot input to that modelling process as mentioned in, for example, para 4.2.2 of Appendix 17.1 Annex C :

" Input Information...
Indicative airspace test cases available at time of developing this PEIR to support the application for development consent based on the airspace design envelopes, developing indicative airspace design parameters and scenarios as developed through the ACP".

Frequent mention is made in the PEIR of the "‘featured’ indicative airspace design test case (IAD 2)" but I could find no description of what this was and how it might differ from the other 9 indicative test cases.

Accordingly I would be grateful if you could respond to the original request and internally review the handling of it.

I note that you state "Heathrow is not currently subject to either EIR or Freedom of Information requests".
My understanding from the Information Commissioner's Decision Notice
https://ico.org.uk/media/action-weve-tak...
is that " HAL is a public authority for the purposes of the EIR." although I see that Case EA/2020/0101 is listed as an appeal to the First-tier Tribunal, but no hearing date is currently assigned.

Yours sincerely,

T Henderson

Heathrow Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Thank you for contacting the Community Relations team.

We will respond to you within 5 working days, alternatively you can speak to one of the team on 0800 307 7996.

Best regards,

Heathrow Community Relations

Disclaimer: CONFIDENTIAL NOTICE: The information contained in this email and accompanying data are intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and / or privileged material. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, the use of this information or any disclosure, copying or distribution is prohibited and may be unlawful. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete all copies of this message and attachments.
Please note that Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries ("Heathrow") monitors incoming and outgoing mail for compliance with its Information Security policy. This includes scanning emails for computer viruses. COMPANY PARTICULARS: For particulars of Heathrow companies, please visit http://www.heathrow.com/company.. For information about Heathrow Airport, please visit www.heathrow.com.
Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited is a private limited company registered in England under Company Number 05757208, with the Registered Office at The Compass Centre, Nelson Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, TW6 2GW.

Matt Knight left an annotation ()

The 8 attachments to the above response (which are presented via Heathrow's Salesforce system) have been uploaded to the WhatDoTheyKnow files server and are accessible at https://files.whatdotheyknow.com/request...
--
Matt
WhatDoTheyKnow.com Volunteer Admin Team

Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Dear Tim,

Thank you for your reply and apologies for the delay in replying. 

Having spoken to one of my colleagues, I can confirm that the test cases
were developed to show a range of potential noise effects given that the
airspace change process has not yet determined the actual flight path
options.

This means that the test cases have been developed considering individual
noise related design principles in isolation, as this approach helps to
identify the more extreme options that define the ‘bookends’ of the range
of potential noise effects.   

The actual flight path options will be developed through the airspace
change process which seeks to find an appropriate balance considering all
the design principles together.  This includes air quality, delay and
operational criteria as well as noise.  Therefore, while the test cases
are indicative in-so-much that they indicate the range of potential noise
effects, they are no more likely to be the final design than any one of
the hundreds of other options that the airspace change process will take
through development.

We believe it is important to only show the complete set of options once
it is ready, rather than providing partial information (in the form of the
limited set of the test cases) in advance as this may falsely suggest
these test cases are more likely to be the final design than they are in
reality. 

I do hope that this is helpful, but please do let me know if you have any
further questions. 

Kind regards,

Hinal

Heathrow Community Relations

show quoted sections

Dear Community Relations,

Thank you for the reply of 25th June mentioning the design principle approach to developing the testcase flight procedures.

However, I do not recognise "we believe it is important to only show the complete set of options once it is ready" as a valid exemption from release of the information under EIR of my original request dating from 14th February.

I requested an internal review of the handling of my request on 15th May and I estimate that 29 working days have elapsed since then. I would think it is reasonable , under the guidance from the Information Commissioner, to refer the case to him if I do not receive an internal review report by 15th July (allowing a generous 40 days in total).

Yours sincerely,

T Henderson

Heathrow Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Thank you for contacting the Community Relations team.

We will respond to you within 5 working days, alternatively you can speak to one of the team on 0800 307 7996.

Best regards,

Heathrow Community Relations

Disclaimer: CONFIDENTIAL NOTICE: The information contained in this email and accompanying data are intended only for the person or entity to which it is addressed and may contain confidential and / or privileged material. If you are not the intended recipient of this email, the use of this information or any disclosure, copying or distribution is prohibited and may be unlawful. If you received this in error, please contact the sender and delete all copies of this message and attachments.
Please note that Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries ("Heathrow") monitors incoming and outgoing mail for compliance with its Information Security policy. This includes scanning emails for computer viruses. COMPANY PARTICULARS: For particulars of Heathrow companies, please visit http://www.heathrow.com/company.. For information about Heathrow Airport, please visit www.heathrow.com.
Heathrow Airport Holdings Limited is a private limited company registered in England under Company Number 05757208, with the Registered Office at The Compass Centre, Nelson Road, Hounslow, Middlesex, TW6 2GW.

Community Relations, Heathrow Airport Limited

Dear Mr Henderson, 

Thank you for your email. 

Heathrow is appealing against the Information Commissioner’s recent
decision that Heathrow is subject to the Environmental Information
Regulations 2004.  As noted in previous correspondence, our position is
that the EIR do not apply to Heathrow. Whilst the appeal is ongoing, we
are not obliged to comply with requests for information made under the
EIR. We are also not subject to Freedom of information requests. 
 

We believe that it is important to only show the complete set of options
once they are completed as sharing partial information is likely to cause
more confusion for communities. As shared in the previous repsonse, the
actual flight path options will be developed through the airspace change
process. Which seeks to find an appropriate balance considering all the
design principles together. 

I do hope this response answers your questions. 

Best wishes. 
Hannah 

Heathrow community relations

show quoted sections

T Henderson left an annotation ()

I have referred the request to the Information Commissioner's Office :

I have requested environmental information from Heathrow Airport Limited which I consider was relevant and necessary for a proper understanding of the statutory consultation into the Third Runway Expansion proposals carried out last summer.

They have provided no valid EIR exemption for not releasing the information and have not carried out a proper internal review.

They argue that they have no duty to comply with EIR pending the outcome of an appeal against the ICO decision letter.

All correspondence at https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/i...

I do not think the complaint could be resolved without either disclosing the information or providing a valid exemption for refusal under EIR.

T Henderson left an annotation ()

Response from ICO suggesting another internal review may be forthcoming :

4 September 2020

Case Reference: IC-50165-S6B5

Dear Tim Henderson,

Thank you for your complaint of 11 August 2020 regarding Heathrow Airport Limited's handling of your environmental information request.

We have written to the above public authority to notify them of your complaint and, due to their initial response to you request for information, we have offered them the opportunity to further review their response to your specific information request.

The public authority have confirmed that they are now going to conduct a further internal review of the response to your information request. Please can you let us know once you have received the outcome of this further review.

Yours sincerely,

XXXXXXXXXX
Case Officer
Information Commissioner's Office

T Henderson left an annotation ()

I have received a response from the person at Heathrow who was asked to carry out the internal review :

20 October 2020
Dear Mr Henderson
Information request relating to indicative flight paths for airspace test cases
I write further to your request for information from Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL) dated 14 February
2020, which was purportedly made under the Environmental Information Regulations 2004 (EIR), and
your subsequent correspondence with HAL in relation to this matter.
I understand that you have made a formal complaint to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)
concerning HAL’s handling of your information request. HAL was notified of your complaint by way
of a letter from the ICO dated 1 September 2020, and in response to that letter HAL agreed to carry
out a further internal review of its response to your information request on a voluntary basis.
I have been asked, at this stage, to undertake the internal review of HAL’s response to your request.
Having considered the matter, I note that the First Tier Tribunal is seized of an appeal by HAL against
the Information Commissioner's decision of 3 February 2020 that HAL is a public authority for the
purposes of the EIR. I do not wish to pre-empt the Tribunal's decision and will instead await its binding
conclusion in order to inform and finalise the review and decision.
In any event, it appears to me that even if HAL is found to be a public authority for the purposes of
the EIR, the information you requested would be exempt from disclosure under regulation 12(5)(d) on
the basis that it relates to material which is incomplete and the disclosure of which would cause
significant public confusion and is therefore not in the public interest.
Yours faithfully

XXXX