Copy of 2023-04-03T203354Z_2102634872_RC2NFX9KNXQT_RTRMADP_3_NETHERLANDS-AIRPORT-1680614388902
Climate activists protest against environmental pollution from aviation at Amsterdam's Schiphol Airport, in Schiphol, Netherlands November 5. Image Credit: REUTERS

Amsterdam: Schiphol Airport, a key European transfer hub, plans to stop late night flights and ban private jets to reduce noise and lower CO2 emissions.

Aircraft will no longer take off between midnight and 6am at the Amsterdam hub once the changes go into effect in the next two to three years, the airport said in a statement on Tuesday. There will be no more landings between midnight and 5am.

The moves are part of a push to reduce noise and carbon emissions in line with the Paris climate accord. Private jets and small business aviation cause a “disproportionate” amount of noise and CO2 pollution and will be banned, the airport said. Schiphol is also scrapping plans for an additional runway.

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The new rules, which will mean 10,000 fewer night flights annually, come after the Dutch government proposed slashing the airport’s annual capacity by as much as 12 per cent to 440,000 flights by 2024 - an effort that’s being challenged at court by airlines.

“Our choices may have significant implications for the aviation industry, but they are necessary,” Royal Schiphol Group CEO Ruud Sondag said. “This shows we mean business.”

The Dutch arm of Air France-KLM said it was surprised by Schiphol’s proposals, which have “far-reaching consequences” for airlines. KLM, which accounts for close to 60 per cent of traffic at Schiphol, will join other aviation organizations in submitting its vision on the plans to the Dutch infrastructure ministry by June 15, it said in a statement.

While cargo flights will have to adhere to tighter rules for noisier aircraft and night closures, Schiphol wants to keep 2.5 per cent of the take-off and landing slots available for such planes. “Due to international slot regulations, cargo flights are currently struggling to keep their slots at Schiphol,” the company said.