The challenge of aviation noise in Singapore

While I understand the frustration some may have with the noise arising from planes, people need to have a better understanding of the aviation challenge in Singapore (Measures needed to reduce noise from planes in north-east, by Mrs Theresa Wee; April 14).

Singapore's airspace is very constrained. Therefore, having some flight paths crossing over the island is unavoidable.

While the new passenger terminal at Seletar will be up by the end of this year, the volume of traffic will be far from that of Changi Airport.

Furthermore, the growth of Seletar hub is crucial to the success of Singapore's aviation sector, which could be worth $88 billion to the economy in 2035, according to the International Air Transport Association (Aviation could be worth $88b to economy in 20 years: IATA; June 16, 2016).

And while the Republic of Singapore Air Force's (RSAF's) training sessions may cause sound disturbances, they have stringent noise abatement regulations.

For example, the RSAF is advised on various national exam timings, and they will have their training adjusted accordingly to accommodate these exams.

In addition, they have also moved a bulk of their training overseas.

The result of their rigorous training was demonstrated in their quick response on April 5, when they escorted a Scoot flight due to an alleged bomb threat.

The defence of our airspace and the development of the aviation hub go hand in hand, and are key pillars to the success of Singapore.

Chen Chuanren

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 18, 2018, with the headline The challenge of aviation noise in Singapore. Subscribe