The East End
is under siege daily,
from private flights
to and from KHTO.
The image above shows flight tracks
obliterating the map of the East End,
despite the reduced number
of flights during the early weeks
of the pandemic in 2020.
KHTO is the code which identifies the East Hampton Airport within the global air navigation system.
The codes are established by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and are used in global as well as in all U.S. flight planning and air traffic control (AirNav).
About Say No
Say NO to KHTO is a community organization, co-founded in 2016 by Patricia Currie (Southampton) and Barry Raebeck (East Hampton).
Say NO to KHTO is dedicated to exploring environmentally-friendly and more equitable community use of 570 acres of Town-owned land which accommodates KHTO, East Hampton Airport.
Uses other than aviation on the property will help protect the environment and the health, safety and well-being of all Long Island residents and others as far distant as NYC.
▪ our mission is to inform, educate and advocate for transformation of land currently used as an airport to safe, environmentally-responsible and sustainable uses
▪ work with residents from NYC to the East End and a coalition of community groups within the five East End towns to encourage elected officials to support re-envisioning of KHTO.
Say NO supporters are noise-affected people residing as far as 100 miles from East Hampton's noisy polluting airport. Many areas have been impacted by all forms of airport pollution, those beneath flight paths have been impacted for decades. Each year, more people are adversely affected as non-essential private air traffic to KHTO increases, noise pollution intensifies, and air pollution is dispersed by toxic aircraft emissions over our communities, farm fields and waterways.
There is no genuine economic justification for the Town of East Hampton to continue to enable this “pollution of convenience”.
2021 could be one of the worst years on record for air pollution over our communities, leaving a giant costly and unnecessary carbon footprint, at a time of dire climate change.
Despite little air traffic during the early months of the pandemic in 2020 (obliterating the outline of the East End on the vector image map shown at top of page), flight activity by year's end was down only 15 percent compared to 2019. During the last four months of 2020, the flight increases at KHTO compared to 2019 were alarming. (Source: airport management, KHTO.)
▪ September + 14%
▪ October + 68%
▪ November + 58%
▪ December + 82%
Pre-pandemic, the worst of the season's annual aviation assaults over our homes ended shortly after the Thanksgiving weekend. However, a new "normal" may have been established in 2020 as more people with the means to fly "private" may ignore the huge carbon footprint made by their journeys (conservatively estimated at least 10 times larger than the footprint of a passenger on a commercial flight), and continue to fly private, so future "seasons" are likely to extend to year's end and begin again much earlier in the spring.
Thousands of Long Island residents living beneath the FAA-sanctioned flight routes on North and South Shores, and others close to the route which follows the LI Rail Road track from NYC to Montauk, are impacted daily by KHTO-generated nerve-shattering aircraft noise and visual pollution.
It's 2021, with no
restrictions or curfews
at EH airport
The Town of East Hampton attempted to place curfews and access restrictions, but local control was denied by the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals.
▪ In 2016, in its final ruling against the Town and against the well-being of residents of Long Island, the Court handed control of the airport to the FAA and giving unfettered access to KHTO by charter operators and owners of commuter seaplanes, heavy twin-engine helicopters, large jets and lead-fueled small planes.
▪ In 2017, the Town of East Hampton took the case for local control to the next step, petitioning for a review by the Supreme Court of the United States. SCOTUS declined to hear the people's case.
▪ The Town then filed a Part 161 application for FAA exemptions under the Air Noise and Capacity Act (ANCA), but the FAA was unresponsive.
▪ No curfews or restrictions of any kind are now in effect at KHTO, which is open 24/7/365. The airport does not close even when visibility is poor, and despite that many fixed-wing aircraft and helicopters fly on visual flight rules (VFR), without instruments, when it's up to the pilot in control of the aircraft to "see and avoid".
▪ KHTO remains under federal control until the end of September, 2021, after which the Town may legally close the problem-plagued facility if it so chooses.
For two decades, residents have shared with elected representatives at federal, state, county and local levels their growing concerns about all forms of aviation pollution and threats to public health and safety (low altitude flights, fixed-wing and rotor traffic funneled into congested narrow air corridors above homes, and the increasing number of all types of aircraft).
At East Hampton Airport, carbon-dense operations are accelerating. In 2020, KHTO morphed from a helicopter and seaplane hub into a buzzing jetport, located at the very edge of once quiet, quaint East Hampton Village!
Despite urgent pleas by scientists to reduce greenhouses gas emissions, to limit even worse effects of climate change than those now devastating our country, carbon emissions from aviation are expected to grow faster in the coming years than from any other industry within the transportation sector.
Compared to pre-pandemic 2020
It is time to transform the property and
return the economic and recreational
benefits to the owners of the land,
the residents of East Hampton.