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Noise Management Strategy

Reducing the noise from our aircraft


Virgin Atlantic has announced an aviation-first, becoming the only airline to set itself robust noise targets and publish a strategy for delivering on those targets, in a fully peer-reviewed Noise Management Strategy.

Through significant aircraft investment and by adopting the latest operational techniques, we’ve achieved a 5dB reduction in the average noise output per aircraft in our fleet since 1984.

Our Noise Management Strategy sets out our aims to achieve further noise reductions across our fleet. It’s been designed in line with our Change is in the Air Sustainability programme, is easy to read and provides a clear and concise summary of our plans.

There are five noise commitments we’re working towards – further detail can be found in the strategy itself:

Pledge 1 - We are pledging to achieve a 6dB reduction on average noise output per movement by 2020, a challenging target. A major step towards that will be delivered by the Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, which has a 60% smaller footprint than aircraft of a comparable size today.

Pledge 2 - We will continue to implement and, where possible, increase the use of aircraft noise reducing procedures. We will continue to work with the wider industry in developing and exploring the feasibility of new operating techniques.

Pledge 3 - We will continue to work with the airports from which we operate to ensure that we mitigate noise for local communities surrounding airports and that only appropriate developments take place where necessary. It is important that going forwards the land-use planning system does not permit the development of noise sensitive building in areas closest to airports.

Pledge 4 – We aim to ensure that any of our scheduled night flight operations are carried out with a minimal impact on local communities. On our noise restricted night flights, we have seen a 66% quota count reduction and for aircraft on arrival a 75% reduction between 1984 and 2013. We will continue to ensure that we’re adopting the appropriate noise abatement operational procedures on our night flight operations and minimise late-running departures through our company-wide focus on ‘On Time Performance’.

Pledge 5 - We will continue to develop our engagement with local communities impacted by our operations. We will continue to work collaboratively across industry groups and with
airport authorities to remain engaged with local community priorities at key airports.


Annual Update 2014 (PDF 518KB) (opens in a new window) Noise Management Strategy (PDF 1.5MB) (opens in a new window)