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Wednesday, 30 May 2012
Page: 6364

Mr MORRISON (Cook) (19:34): Sydney airport is a key driver of our local shire and economy, providing jobs for thousands in aviation and related industries. My constituents have a great interest in securing the airport's ongoing success, and planning for future infrastructure needs will be critical to that success. We have now reached the point where a second Sydney airport is no longer a bold vision, like the Sydney Harbour Bridge was when it was planned and built, but an overdue necessity.

The Joint study on aviation capacity for the Sydney region report details two alarming warnings for my electorate and the Sydney community. Without a supplementary second airport there is no ability for Sydney to grow our aviation capacity to realise our future opportunities and noise sharing at KSA will effectively be impossible within 18 months. In order to sustain Sydney as the aviation hub it is today, a second supplementary airport is critical to ensuring Sydney's continued dominance and prominence in aviation. Even on conservative estimates, demand for aviation services in the Sydney region will double to nearly 88 million passenger movements by 2035 and to 165 million passengers by 2060. International experience suggests that for every million passengers airports generate a thousand jobs. The most immediate employment benefits fall within the local area. Yet, without a second supplementary airport, on its current trajectory KSA's ability to grow new services will leave Sydney short.

The status quo is not an acceptable solution for the airport needs of a major city of Sydney's global stature in the 21st century. If future aviation demand cannot be met, by 2060 we will have lost almost $60 billion in forgone expenditure and $34 billion in forgone gross domestic product. The New South Wales economy alone would forego $17.5 billion in gross state product. We are running out of time. Even if the site was fixed upon tonight, the timeline for developing and building something of this magnitude could be in the order of 15 years.

It is imperative this government makes a decision on a site for a second supplementary airport for Sydney before the next election. It is a federal decision, not a state decision. Once decided we must work positively with the state government and not seek to fit up that government with all of the associated land based transport infrastructure costs. Seeking a blank cheque commitment in advance from the New South Wales government for a site yet undetermined by the federal government is not practical and not helpful. No wonder the New South Wales Premier is proposing that the second Sydney airport not even be in the same state let alone in the same city. He has some experience in being fit up by this government for major transport projects.

Without a second airport our capacity to share aircraft noise in Sydney would also be compromised. It is bewildering for my constituents why, when we are blessed with a coastline and a swathe of national park, aircraft on rivet 9 flight path still fly over Caringbah, Lilli Pilli, Grays Point and Cronulla, or oceanic arrivals fly loops over our southern suburbs before 6 am, or Boree 4 flights take the land rather than the water leg when they could route over vacant parkland or sea instead without disturbing anyone.

The long-term operating plan introduced by the Howard government, supported by the legislated cap and curfew introduced by the government, has been a productive initiative to share aircraft noise and maintain community support for our airport. It is a critical component of the compact with the Sydney community to deliver peaceful and prosperous coexistence between the airport and local communities. LTOP rates rotate 10 different modes of runway use through the day to offer a reprieve to residents under the flight paths. Ministerial direction includes that the proposed changes to the elements of the plan should be tested with the public through the Sydney Airport Community Forum before being implemented. In this respect, I want to pay tribute to Mr John Woods and the special community representative, Kevin Hill, who serve on that forum. I was therefore particularly disturbed by the joint committee's recommendation that LTOP be reviewed to determine new, more effective measures of aircraft noise impacts and respite rather than the current runway-end movements.

LTOP is clearly over. The report admits growth and operations at KSA will lead to loss of the capacity to share noise and provide respite. By 2015 nine hours of the weekday will have demand levels exceeding 55 movements per hour, the approximate point beyond which the LTOP noise-sharing modes can no longer be operated and parallel runway operations are required. By 2020 the report forecast that demand at all hours between 7 am and 8 pm, save for two hours in the afternoon, will exceed that aircraft movement limit. The only opportunities for respite would be after 8 pm and a small window on the weekend.

Details of this review process are still unavailable. The last thing anyone wants is a return to the days when parallel runways were used, as the former transport minister Mark Vaile said, like the deck of an aircraft carrier in a war zone. With or without a second airport, we need to set our minds to developing LTOP mark 2. We need a new deal and a fair deal for all Sydney communities and we need a decision on a second supplementary airport as soon as possible . Both of these initiatives have my very strong support. (Time expired)