Will there soon be fewer helicopter flights in the Alps?

Air traffic in the high alpine region of Switzerland has always been a highly controversial topic. A decision taken four years ago by the Federal Council is now called into question by a ruling of the Federal Administrative Court. Will it soon be possible to enrich other mountain landing sites?

In a new ruling, the Federal Administrative Court reverses what the Swiss government decided in 2014. At that time it was decided to delete two mountain landing sites and to maintain the remaining 40 landing sites. The affected communities of the two painted landing sites filed a complaint against the decision. In its judgment, the Federal Administrative Court does not directly condone the two municipalities, but questions the decision of the Federal Council itself.

Decision criteria are deficient

In its most recent ruling, the Federal Administrative Court stated that the criteria that led to the decision in 2014 were inadequate. They would not take into account whether mountain flying affects national protected areas. Much more, the Federal Council should have obtained an opinion from the Federal Nature and Homeland Conservation Commission (ENHK) for its decision, which it did not do.

20 more mountain landing sites would have to be tested

If the decision of the Federal Administrative Court has its way, 20 additional landing sites would have to be re-evaluated on the basis of an ENHK report. The Federal Department for the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communication (DETEC) is now considering to challenge this judgment, as a spokesman told the daily newspaper. It is therefore not yet clear whether the mountain landing sites will be reassessed or not.

Credits: picture pixabay, Text based on Information of the day indicator

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