1. Promotion of environmental awareness in air sports

The FAI is committed to protect the natural environment and to encourage its members to take environmental protection into account when practising air sports.

The FAI is working to ensure that these detailed codes of conduct for each of the air sports are implemented by its members.

The FAI on behalf of all air sport practitioners declares that:

  • Everybody has a duty of care towards nature and the environment, but also has a right to enjoy the beauty of nature and to seek recreation in natural surroundings.
  • Air sports are closely bound to nature and those who fly have a right to enjoy nature in their own way
  • The air sport community therefore has an interest in maintaining and protecting the environment.
  • Suitable areas need to be opened and maintained in sufficient numbers for the practice of air sports.

2. Understanding

Air sports people are aware of the need to maintain a balanced environment. All air sport participants have an influence on the environment, humans and wild-life, and affect the basic resources of life - land, air and water - by, for example:

The need for land: e.g. areas for taking off, landing, buildings, parking and access roads.

The consumption of energy: e.g. depletion of non-renewable resources.

Creating waste, noise and emissions: e.g. aircraft and vehicle use.

This means that we have to design our flying sites and conduct our operations with environmental awareness and sensitivity. The organisers and providers of flying sites cannot do this alone:

The responsibility for environmental awareness in air sports lies primarily with the individual air sport enthusiast

Air sport enthusiasts and their clubs must therefore commit themselves to the protection and improvement of the natural environment by means of... [see next pages]

3. Environmental information

Air sport participants should improve their knowledge about how natural phenomena inter-relate and about the effects of aviation activities on the natural environment.

4. Contact with the natural environment

Care must be taken in the use of natural resources, and open countryside must be treated with respect.

5. Landscaping and provision for wildlife on flying sites

Flying site infrastructure (airfield, parking areas, buildings) must be landscaped and maintained with provision for wild life where possible and appropriate.

6. Support for Environmental Protection Measures

Air sport participants should help to maintain and improve areas surrounding flying sites. Individual natural features which are worthy of protection should be preserved, and people encouraged to support environmental protection schemes.

The voluntary achievement of environmental objectives, instead of legislative restrictions, should be promoted.

7. Community Service "Eyes in the Sky"

Protected, endangered and threatened areas should be watched for possible damage (for example, forests threatened by fire or acid rain, rabid animals, polluted water sources), and assistance should be given to surveys for Nature Conservation, agriculture and forestry etc.

8. Conservation volunteers

Each individual club should appoint a nature conservation and environmental representative.

9. FAI Action

The FAI is active in the promotion of environmental protection and nature conservation, in order to:

Promote awareness and responsible attitudes among air sports enthusiasts about environmental matters. Support environmental projects associated with air sport. Demonstrate how air sports and their infrastructure make a positive contribution to the environment.

Action by National Air Sport Controls, Individual Clubs and Participants

10. Action by National Air Sport Controls, Individual Clubs and Participants

The Flying Site

Flying sites should be laid out and operated in an environmentally sustainable fashion by:

  • Employing energy-saving measures, and encouraging the introduction of appropriate new technologies. 
  • Appropriate storing, handling and disposal of environmentally threatening substances (oil, petrol, paraffin, paints, chemicals and kitchen, campsite and toilet waste etc). 
  • Restoring temporary flying sites to a suitable environmental state when flying activities are terminated.
  • Blending permanent flying sites with the surrounding landscape (for example by using site-specific local bushes, shrubs and trees, and by sensitive placing of buildings, engine run-up areas, etc.).
  • Allowing grass and wild flowers to grow in a predominantly undisturbed fashion on unused parts of the airfield.

To assist in addressing queries or complaints from people affected by air sport operations, it can be helpful to set up Airfield Consultative Committees, with representatives from the flying site and from the local community. Further details are given in the ICAO paper "Recommended Measures to help Reduce the Noise Related Nuisance from Light Aeroplanes" listed in the bibliography.

See the Bibliography for this and some other existing sources of useful information:

The Aircraft

Aircraft should be improved when economically feasible to keep pace with advances in energy and noise reduction.