It remains unclear for months whether Schiphol should take radical measures due to stricter nitrogen, noise and overloading rules. For example, it is about reducing the number of flights and buying out surrounding farms.
The problem is “complex” and “takes time”, writes Minister of Infrastructure and Water Management Harbers to the House of Representatives. He has asked research firm Royal HaskoningDHV to investigate how the airport can limit damage to the surrounding nature reserves. And Schiphol itself is also going to work with this. That will take a few months, Harbers expects.
Schiphol Airport does not meet the stricter environmental requirements and does not have a nature permit that is necessary for the purpose of nitrogen emissions. That permit must come quickly and the cabinet has had major concerns about this for months. In December, the cabinet discussed a note leaked via deCCeit on draconian measures to make the airport comply with stricter nitrogen, noise and overloading rules.
This includes the shelves of potentially 100,000 flights, buying out nearby farms and a maximum speed of 80 kilometers per hour on motorways around the airport.
Chairman of the Board Benschop does not want to prejudge the question of what the consequences will be for Schiphol if there is indeed a mandatory shrinkage. Answering the questions and making the calculations will certainly take a few more weeks, he said this morning when presenting the annual figures.
Harbers writes about a “complex trade-off” between public interests and a “complex process”. He sees that there are many questions in the House of Representatives and in society about the future of Schiphol.
The cabinet considers the international airport important for the Dutch business climate and the economy. But Schiphol is located in the Randstad, in the middle of a residential area and that also has consequences.
Planned housing may not be able to continue and “attention should be paid to the negative effects of aviation on people, the environment and nature.
In the spring, Harbers comes with a letter again, but he does not mention a deadline for the investigation of Royal Haskoning.