A new report by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has revealed that the average noise contours have decreased in the area around the Heathrow airport.
According to the study which was commissioned by Heathrow as part of the Noise Action Plan commitments, the area around the airport affected by higher levels of night noise has decreased by 25%.
The report stated: "Over the past nine years, the area around the airport affected by higher levels of night noise (measured by 60dB Lnight), has decreased by 25%. This has resulted in 25% fewer households affected by these noise levels at night. Had the population and households remained static during this period, there would be 42% fewer homes affected by these noise levels at night."
Heathrow attributes the results to the measures it has been adopting since 2006 which includes the use of new planes and quieter procedures driving the reductions in the noise footprint.
In addition, a six-month trial of steeper approaches with the aircraft fly higher as well as longer before landing at the airport, has commenced at the airport aimed reducing noise for people living under flight paths.
Heathrow director for sustainability and environment Matt Gorman said: "Heathrow is at the forefront of international efforts to tackle aircraft noise and these latest contours are testament to the efforts of Heathrow and our airline and manufacturing partners to reduce the impact of the operations. But we won't stop here. We know there's more we can do through initiatives like our steeper approaches trial, and we will continue to push all those operating at Heathrow to be industry leaders in reducing noise."
With the proposals for expansion in progress, Heathrow expects to reduce noise footprint through Noise Blueprint, a plan outlining ten steps to cut noise by this year.
Recently London mayor Boris Johnson sent a 30-page dossier to MPs, opposing Airports Commission's recommendation to expand Heathrow Airport, suggesting the residents living under the flight paths will be subjected to increased noise pollution.
Image: Heathrow has adopted Noise Blueprint, a plan outlining ten steps to cut noise by 2015. Photo: courtesy of Heathrow Airport.