Thursday, November 20, 2014
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced yesterday that the North Texas Metroplex NextGen project has been successfully put into place, promising more efficiency in the U.S. airspace.
According to U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, this system will save fuel and reduce the emissions from aircraft, thereby benefiting the environment. The FAA said this system could reduce distances flown by one million nautical miles annually and could save tens of thousands of metric tons of carbon emissions annually.
To date, the North Texas Metroplex NextGen Project is amongst the largest in the country. A similar project has been underway in Houston since May and more projects are proposed in major cities such as Washington, D.C.; Atlanta, Georgia; and Charlotte, North Carolina. A metroplex is a large multi-airport urban area where air operations can be inefficient because of air traffic congestion and environmental concerns.
These initiatives are very expensive to put in place and the deadline to have the entire NextGen system put into place — originally to be by the year 2020 — is approaching, but FAA Administrator Michael Huerta expressed hope this Metroplex system would go into place at airports around the country.
NextGen is a system the FAA claims would allow aircraft to fly shorter routes and save millions of gallons of fuel each year and cut carbon emissions. It uses satellite-based technology as opposed to older ground-radar-based technology to allow air traffic controllers to pinpoint aircraft with greater precision and give pilots more accurate information.
== Sources ==
Lynn Lunsford. "Press Release – NextGen Procedures Deliver Promised Efficiency for Airlines and Passengers Traveling through North Texas" — Federal Aviation Administration, November 19, 2014
Keith Laing. "FAA touts NextGen implementation in Texas" — The Hill (newspaper), November 19, 2014