Health risks of runway not assessed

There has been no independent assessment into the health impacts of the new runway at Dublin airport. The only assessment that has been carried out is an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) by Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) and this used out-of-date information when assessing the runway's impact on public health, according to Dr Anthony Staines, Professor of Epidemiology at University College Dublin.


The DAA did an assessment of the runway's effect on human health in the EIS as part of their planning application to Fingal County Council (FCC). Anthony Staines says that the study cites out-of-date literature when assessing the effects of noise and air pollution on humans, and therefore does not give FCC a proper scientific background. Staines also says there was no attempt to look at the effect of the runway on the health of the population around the airport.


Dr Staines and UPROAR, the community group against the airport, asked FCC to carry out an independent health report in the form of a health-impact study before planning permission was granted.


The EIS is also compromised by the fact that the data used to assess air and noise pollution figures is collected by the DAA. There were no independent assessments on present or future noise and air pollution carried out before planning permission was granted.


UPROAR has lodged an appeal with An Bord Pleanála citing the lack of an adequate assessment of the impact on human health. An Tasice have also cited the lack of an adequate EIS as one of their objections to An Bord Pleanála.


Emma Browne