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F-35 environmental impact statement approved

written by australianaviation.com.au | July 20, 2015

RAAF F-35s will begin flying in Australia from late 2018.

The Department of the Environment has approved the final environmental impact statement for F-35 flying operations from RAAF bases Williamtown and Tindal and over the Salt Ash air weapons range.

The EIS approval, published on July 10, is subject to the RAAF meeting 15 conditions, “to minimise impacts to listed threatned species and communities…, wetlands of international importance… listed migratory species … and the environment…”

The conditions include implementing an aircraft noise management plan, monitoring actual F-35 aircraft noise levels to make sure they don’t exceed levels predicted in the EIS, and preparing and implementing a fauna management plan.

In a statement on July 17 the RAAF welcomed the approval.

“In accordance with the EIS approval conditions and the existing RAAF Aircraft Noise Management Strategy, aircraft noise management plans for the F-35A will include regular monitoring, public reporting and community consultation,”said Group Captain Phil Gordon, Officer Commanding 81 Wing.


“We look forward to continuing to work with the Department of the Environment and the community to minimise the environmental impacts of the flying operations, while balancing operational and training requirements so Defence can effectively provide air power for Australia’s national security.”

The first RAAF F-35A is due to arrive in Australia in late 2018.

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Comments (9)

  • Daryl


    Fancy …our mighty military machine has to appease the environmentalists

  • Jason


    …and the communities who live around military bases. It’s not called appeasement, it’s called being a part of a community!

  • Raymond


    All about keeping the peace… in peacetime, that is.

  • Alan


    I hope anyone planning on invading us conducts a full environmental impact statement and plans on keeping the noise down.. How are our rare blue tited frogs meant to reproduce if they cant hear themselves croak ?
    Noisey business what ?.

  • Allan


    Are you kidding? I`m all for protecting the environment But seriously? The base has been there since the early forties well out of the way of anyone until the inevitable housing sprawl and now the RAAF has to be careful not to disturb the neighbours., Or a threatened species of woodduck!!!!!!!!!!!

  • TimC69


    LOL, how sad!

  • TimC69


    It happened and RAAF Williams/Laverton and Point Cook, houses started sprouting where grazing paddocks once stood.

  • Chris G


    It is interesting that in the USA communities surrounding their bases where the JSF has replaced legacy USAF and USN fighters are complaining the F35s are much noisier. With civilian aircraft higher bypass ratio engines where more of the thrust is generated by cool air external to the hot core where the fuel is burnt means civilian planes are becoming quieter. Does this mean the supercruising engines in the F22 and F35 are more turbojet than turbofan hence increased noise even though they use less afterburner?

    The threat to the mid E coast of Australia does not necessitate 1, 2OCU, 3, 6, 76 LIFT and 77 SQNs RAAF be based here. With our vast expanses in N and NW Australia they can go supersonic without the boom breaking thousands of windows and constantly disrupting the travelling public on the thickest air routes Cairns to Melbourne via Brisbane, Sydney and Canberra.

    Army BDEs at Darwin, Townsville, Brisbane and schools at Singleton and Puckapunyal only need a transonic tandem seat strike aircraft like the Hawk without an afterburner for CAS. The PC9s in 4 SQN are inadequate for operations. Hawks simulating subsonic missiles fired from Hornets and Super Hornets against RAN warships are inferior to UAVs which don’t put aircrews at risk in weapons hold or tight situations. SW WA deserves better than 79 LIFT SQN provides. The basing and structure of the RAAF is inappropriate for a joint ADF.

  • M. Gorman


    From the States. It does my heart good to know you guys occasionally do things that are just as dumb as we do. But, to be fair, if you see one of these things coming at you with an unhappy pilot it will definitely impact your environment.

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