November 7, 1997
The US-Dept. of Transportation (US-DOT) has added new commercial slots to an already overburdened O’Hare Airport. These new commercial flights will add immense amounts of pollution than was previously produced by a few past military operations.
This is yet another example of what Congressmen Henry Hyde and Jessie Jackson, Jr. wrote to relevant federal agencies, including the US-DOT, "(their) concerns that your agencies are not only failing to properly enforce relevant federal laws as they relate to this problem — but also to voice our worry that some of your agencies may actually be active participants in fostering and encouraging violations of federal laws and policies relating to this problem."
Obviously, by allowing more flights, the US-DOT has no regard for our citizen’s public health and safety even after the Congressmen expressed concerns.
We are seriously troubled about the increase this piecemeal expansion will bring in air-water-ground-noise pollution, safety risks and more damage to public health to possibly millions, living near the airport. The environmental situation is already totally unacceptable.
Minimally, the full increase in 10 slots are: 3,650 landings and 3, 650 take-offs a year. 7,300 MORE operations! How many more operations will be created outside of the High Density Rule? With all the associated ground traffic and maintenance pollution these operations will create, this is totally unacceptable.
To protect public health and our environment, any increase in operations should command an Environmental Impact Statement and enforcement of existing laws regarding air pollution and antitrust.
We ask our Illinois legislators to follow the lead taken by New York legislators to protect their constituents: Demand that any and all piecemeal increases, including these additional operations IMMEDIATELY cease, until the damages to public health, safety and environment, that are already caused airport operations, can be assessed and mitigated, and under National Environmental Policy Act that all viable alternatives to any past, present or future increases in activity be researched and developed.