Archaeological sites Peru threatened by airport construction

The construction of a brand new airport near the world famous city of Machu Picchu in Peru destroys archaeological sites that are yet unexplored.

The airport aims to ease access of tourists to the former Inca capitol. Archaeologists, anthropologists and historians claim it will destroy cultural riches visitors come to see.

Nearly 200 Peruvian and international experts have signed a protest to the national government asking to suspend construction and consider relocation of the project.

The current location of the project overlooks Peru’s Sacred Valley, one of the first areas conquered by the Incas in the 1300s. Incan agricultural terraces still cover the mountainsides around this spot. Read more >

New Twitter-account for Explane

We just opened a new Twitter-account for the Explane-app. Via this account we’ll inform you about the newest developments in our work.

The first tweet mentions the 4.000 registrations that have already been made since we launched the app.

Also we mention the hard work that is going on to produce an interactive web site to present reports. The registrations will be accessible for anyone with an interest in the problem op aviation noise and its nuisance.

You can follow Explane via https://twitter.com/AppExplane (tech) or https://www.facebook.com/explane.org/ (news).

No outcome for consultation Schiphol Airport

After years of consultation between residents, the aviation industry and politicians, earlier today became clear that there will be no outcome of this process. Parties could not reach an agreement about the future of the airport.

In December last year the consultation seemed to head up to an extra 25,000 flights for Schiphol until 2023. At the beginning of this year the president of the residents was taken out of the talks because of this threatening outcome.

Since the forced change of the spokesman residents forced a zero growth in the negotiations. Mayors and politicians of neighbouring cities and the Environmental Federation (Milieufederatie) backed citizens in that pursuit . Read more >

Call for ideas website explane.org

Since we have released the iOS- and Android-versions of our app to document aviation noise, we have started to build our website to publish the results online. And you can help us with your ideas!

Obviously we will publish lists of the highest sound level measurements. You will be able to select the area, the dates, the type of airplane or the aviation company. Also we will produce a realtime map displaying the measured noise levels.

Do you have other ideas about how we could present our data to our visitors? Please share them with us. Use our feedback form or send your ideas to [email protected]. Read more >

Explane releases iOS-version

After months of hard work in spare time, app builder Roelof Meijer has released the iOS-version of this app today.

The iOS-version is intended for users of Apple’s iPhone. The app is called ExplaneNow in the Appstore and can be downloaded via https://itunes.apple.com/nl/app/explanenow/id1448049191 or via https://explane.org.

The Explane-app is intended to document aviation noise. As a resident, you can register the noise of an airplane with one push on a button. The app records the peak sound level, your location, the date and time, and finds the ID of the flight that is causing the noise.

All these data you can send to our central database which will be soon be published via our site https://explane.org. The data will be accessible for anyone who has an interest in the widespread nuisance of aviation noise. The data can be used to oppose calculations made by airports and (local) governments that often predict noise levels too low. Read more >

Tips & tricks: really use it outdoors!

Our first episode of Tips & tricks stated that you best use our app outside your home. We’ve received replies from people who want to have a button in the app so they can indicate they measured noise inside their homes.

We will not provide such a button. Instead we kindly ask you again to use the app outdoors only.

The reason for this is quite simple: measuring aviation noise inside your home will not give us usable values of the noise level. There are homes that are very well insulated, while others aren’t. Measuring inside introduces a new uncertainty in the data.

The Explane-app is meant to collect as good as possible information about aviation noise and its nuisance. Read more >

EIA Schiphol full of miscalculations

Earlier this week Amsterdam Airport Schiphol released its third (!) review of its Environmental Impact Assessment. The report is (again) incorrect on a number of important points.

This conclusion follows from reports written by the Dutch Environmental Federation, consulting firms PWC and MovingDot.

According to its own EIA, Schiphol can grow to handle 540.000 flights a year, 40.000 more than currently permitted.

Not the environment, but the capacity at air traffic control is the limiting factor, according to the airport’s report.

“The calculations on a number of points are not carried out according to standards, wrong assumptions are used en the method provides a too low estimate of noise pollution”, say the critics. Read more >

Sneak preview: the site

Users of our app document aviation noise levels. Our aim is to publish the results on our site. Here’s a preview of what you can expect:

Actual measurements with beta version of Explane app

Our site will offer visitors the possibility to view the collected data in various ways. Above an example of measurements with their geolocation and their noise level. The darker the dots, the more noise.

From such a map you can zoom in and out to view details for your neighboorhood. The example shows The Netherlands since we’ve started here, but the app works worldwide!

Zoomed in on measurements around Amsterdam Schiphol Airport


Tips & tricks: use Explane outdoors

If you use our app, please use it outdoors. This gives you the best quality measurement of aviation noise.

If you use it inside your home, the real noise of the plane is lowered with at least 10 to 15 dB.

Please remember that the app cannot detect if you measure inside or outside your home. Every measurement that you send us will be part of the open access database we are building.

For best results it is important to measure the real noise of airplanes, not the muted level inside your home.

UN environment boss resigns after too much flying

Erik Solheim, chief of the United Nations Environment Programme UNEP, resigns after British newspaper The Guardian revealed he spent almost $500,000 on air travel and hotels in just 22 months.

photo: unenvironment.org

Contributing countries were so unhappy with his conduct that they are holding tens of millions of dollars. A financial crisis looms at the body.

An internal audit of UNEP says Solheims conduct is a “reputation risk” for an organisation dedicated to improve the environment.

The UN accepted Solheim’s resignation yesterday, says The Guardian.

The Netherlands, Denmark and Sweden are countries that have publicly stated to be halting funding for the organization until the issues around Solheim are solved. In total around $50 million could be at stake.
Read more >