Letter: Yovino questions environmental impact study

from Paul Yovino, this letter was also submitted to the Boston Globe

Letter To The Editor:

Regarding the proposed flight changes at Logan Airport which would bring departure flights over Milton I have read that proposal’s defining document , The Boston Logan International Airport Runway 33L Area Navigation Standard Instrument Departure Environmental Assessment Draft , several times and it seems purposely vague as to the airplane noise impact on the variously affected cities and towns. Moreover, this alleged environmental impact study was conducted without any on the ground assessment or interviews with those Milton residents who would be directly affected by this departure change which makes this study lack any credibility.

When you study the various charts in the assessment you will see that it is very specific as to the current impact of what appears to be a mix of both arrival and departure flights from Logan. However, if you attempt to study or pinpoint the affect of using Runway 33 L over those same cities and town it is extremely vague. The charts use wide color lines that angle off and look more like the a graphing out of the current bends in the economy than a flight path schematic.

Beyond, the study itself what concerns me is that the assessment study seems to be presented to the cities and towns as a fait accompli. From what I have been able to determine no one at Milton Town Hall, neither the then acting Town Administrator nor the three selectmen, was ever informed that this environmental assessment study which will affect the Town of Milton was being undertaken. It just suddenly appeared.

Perhaps the Logan Airport Community Advisory Committee (CAC ) had some knowledge that this assessment with the goal to use Runway 33L for departures was in the works but there seems to be no documentation that the CAC every informed anyone at Milton Town Hall. Not only would that be a courtesy to give the town a heads up that a major change at Logan Airport was in the works that might adversely affect Milton but it should have been a requirement of the very existence of the CAC. Something either failed here which was of critical importance to the welfare of the town or that critical information fell through the cracks.

You cannot undertake such a major change in flight patterns at Logan under a cloak of secrecy until the last possible moment and then spring the assessment on town like Milton. That is a major distortion in the process and put a town like Milton at a severe disadvantage to respond even though under pressure the comment date was extended to March 15. Again, this process is unfair and inequitable to all the cities and towns affected by this change.

Once this flight pattern change is implemented and it is discovered that the airplane noise and safety factors are adversely affecting Milton it will be next to impossible to get the FAA or MassPort to reverse its decision.

Sadly, both the FAA and MassPort have left a trail of broken promises to communities affected by airplane noise and air fuel pollution of their skies. Why should we believe their proposal today. We should not.

Paul Yovino
Former Milton Airplane Noise Committee Member

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