The International Air Transport Association (IATA) welcomed the agreement on a new noise standard with more stringent requirements for future aircraft achieved by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

The ICAO Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP), comprising ICAO member states, industry, and environmental non-governmental organisations, reviewed technological feasibility, environmental benefits and economic factors, and reached a consensus to move forward on a new standard that will result in a reduction of 7EPNdB (effective perceived noise decibels) compared with the current ‘Chapter 4’ standard.

"Air transport is already 75% quieter than it was four decades ago and the industry will continuously pursue cost-effective noise management options to reduce the number of people subject to aircraft noise, in line with our broader global commitments on sustainability and environmental performance," said Tony Tyler, IATA’s director general and CEO.

The new standard will be applicable to new aircraft types for which a request for certification is submitted after 31 December 2017 and for lower-weight new aircraft as of 2020. The current standard came into effect in 2006.

"This is another good example of ICAO successfully tackling a difficult environmental issue," said Tyler. "This collaborative work ensures that the development and implementation of global standards reflect the specific needs of society at large and capabilities of states, while bringing certainty to long-term airline fleet investment."

Another illustration of ICAO’s ability to lead global progress on managing aviation’s environmental impact is the agreement for certification procedures for the new aircraft CO2 standard. Coupled with the common metric system adopted last year, this paves the way for CAEP to assess stringency levels, the last component of the future CO2 standard.

The recommendations agreed to by CAEP will be reported to the ICAO Council later in 2013 for further actions.