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Soapbox: It Is Time to Deliver Global ATM

Tackling issues with a structured project management approach - by Jeff Poole, Director General CANSO

Jeff Poole, CANSO

The greatest challenge faced by aviation today is the future. It is a future that will see increasing demand, air traffic expected to double by 2030, mounting congestion, tighter environmental constraints, and escalating demands on scarce resources, including airspace, land use around airports, and even frequency spectrum. Delivering seamless global airspace through a safe, efficient, harmonized, and cost-effective air traffic management (ATM) system will play a vital role in meeting this challenge.

The main challenge for CANSO and its members in delivering global ATM is to ensure that all air transport industry stakeholders not only agree on the way forward but also deliver. If we are to persuade governments, regulators and others to work with us, and embrace change wholeheartedly we must all speak and act with a common voice.

Following the World ATM Congress in Madrid in February, CANSO has committed to a series of actions to respond to the constructive and helpful challenges and proposals of aviation industry leaders across a wide range of issues. We are now working with ICAO, States, regulators, and industry partners on the detailed steps needed.

We know what we need to do to deliver. We are taking a structured project management approach to each issue with a focus on deliverables and defined timescales. Where actions lie with others, such as States, we will work with them to ensure positive outcomes. CANSO will take action in three broad areas; safety, operations, and policy.

Safety remains the number one priority and CANSO initiatives include working with ICAO to create a framework for enhanced air navigation safety, dialogue, and information exchange; considering the possible establishment of a CANSO safety certificate; and developing safety guidance to address the shared risks between controllers and pilots.

On the operations side, the priority is the harmonized use of airspace across States and regions with a consistent set of standards, rules, procedures, and equipage. We are cooperating with IATA on the implementation of ICAO’s Aviation System Block Upgrades; the further roll-out of Performance-Based Navigation; and the implementation of ADS-B globally, based on common standards. And we will cooperate with governments and their military so that civil traffic can make better use of military airspace leading to more efficient routing, lower costs, and reduced emissions.

In the policy area, we will work with politicians, regulators, and industry partners to overcome institutional and regulatory barriers to the global harmonization of airspace, including the removal of excessive and redundant regulations. We will also campaign to ensure that State sovereignty of airspace is used proactively and constructively to facilitate the progress of ATM harmonization. And we will work with all parties to ensure improved delivery of the Single European Sky as well as other regional airspace initiatives in the Middle East, Asia Pacific, Africa, and the Caribbean.

Transformation of the industry will take some time but at the World ATM Congress in March 2014 we will report on the progress made and the achievements delivered during the coming year. CANSO is well placed to be a major driver of change in the ATM industry and we are determined to deliver.

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