[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 59 (Tuesday, March 27, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 18297-18298]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-7354]


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DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION

Federal Aviation Administration


Air Traffic Noise, Fuel Burn, and Emissions Modeling Using the 
Aviation Environmental Design Tool Version 2a

AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT.

ACTION: Policy Statement.

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SUMMARY: This document provides a statement of FAA policy concerning 
the required use of the Aviation Environmental Design Tool version 2a 
(AEDT 2a) to analyze noise, fuel burn, and emissions for FAA air 
traffic airspace and procedure actions where the study area is larger 
than the immediate vicinity of an airport, incorporates more than one 
airport, or includes actions above 3,000 feet above ground level (AGL). 
The policy statement is intended to ensure consistency and quality of 
analysis performed to assess noise, fuel burn, and emissions impacts of 
such actions under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 
(NEPA), as amended, 42 United States Code (U.S.C.) Sec. Sec.  4321 et 
seq.

DATES: Effective March 21, 2012.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Rebecca Cointin, Office of Environment 
and Energy (AEE), Federal Aviation Administration, 800 Independence 
Ave. SW., Washington, DC 20591; Telephone: (202) 493-5047.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Background: FAA Order 1050.1E, Environmental 
Impacts: Policies and Procedures, describes FAA policies and procedures 
for compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
    Under FAA Order 1050.1E, Appendix A, Section 2.4c, states ``the 
[Emissions and Dispersion Modeling System] EDMS is FAA's required 
methodology for performing air quality analysis modeling for aviation 
sources.'' Section 2.4d states that ``[e]xcept for air toxics or where 
advance written approval has been granted to use an equivalent 
methodology and computer model by the FAA Office of Environment and 
Energy, the air quality analyses for aviation emission sources from 
airport and FAA proposed projects conducted to satisfy NEPA, general 
conformity, and 49 USC 47106(c) requirements under the Clean Air Act 
Amendments of 1990 (as amended) must be prepared using the most recent 
EDMS model available at the start of the environmental analysis 
process.''

[[Page 18298]]

    FAA Order 1050.1E, Appendix A, Section 13.2a describes the FAA 
policy to conserve resources such as energy, and the requirement ``to 
identify any proposed major changes in stationary facilities or the 
movement of aircraft and ground vehicles that would have a measurable 
effect on local supplies of energy or natural resources.''
    FAA Order 1050.1E, Appendix A, Section 14.5e states that for ``air 
traffic airspace actions where the study area is larger than the 
immediate vicinity of an airport, incorporates more than one airport, 
or includes actions above 3,000 feet [Above Ground Level--AGL], noise 
modeling will be conducted using [the Noise Integrated Routing System--
NIRS].''
    The FAA developed the AEDT 2a to model aircraft noise, fuel burn, 
and emissions for air traffic airspace and procedure actions for which 
the use of NIRS is currently required. AEDT 2a has the capability to 
model aircraft performance based on fleet mix, airport configuration, 
and operations schedule. These data are used to compute aircraft noise, 
fuel burn and emissions simultaneously. By standardizing these data, 
AEDT 2a will help FAA stakeholders make more informed decisions on 
specific environmental impacts of aviation.

Policy Statement

    Effective March 21, 2012, AEDT 2a is the required tool for noise, 
fuel burn, and emissions modeling of air traffic airspace and procedure 
actions where the study area is larger than the immediate vicinity of 
an airport, incorporates more than one airport, or includes actions 
above 3,000 feet AGL. Consistent with current FAA policy and practice, 
the use of AEDT 2a is not required for projects whose analysis began 
before the effective date of this policy. In the event AEDT 2a is 
updated after the environmental analysis process if underway, the 
updated version may, but need not, be used to provide additional 
disclosure concerning noise, fuel burn, and emissions.
    FAA-AEE has approved AEDT 2a as an ``equivalent methodology'' to 
EDMS for developing aircraft-only emissions inventories when required 
for air traffic airspace and procedure actions.
    FAA-AEE has approved AEDT 2a to analyze fuel burn to inform the 
discussion of energy impacts and to assist in assessing greenhouse gas 
emissions for air traffic airspace and procedure actions.
    FAA-AEE has issued AEDT 2a to replace NIRS as the required tool to 
analyze noise and fuel burn for air traffic airspace and procedure 
actions.
    This policy statement is issued to ensure consistency and quality 
of analysis performed to comply with requirements under the National 
Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA), as amended, 42 United States 
Code (U.S.C.) Sec. Sec.  4321 et seq.

    Issued in Washington, DC, on March 21, 2012.
Lourdes Q. Maurice,
Executive Director, Office of Environment and Energy.
[FR Doc. 2012-7354 Filed 3-26-12; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4910-13-P