Elected Officials Respond to Navy

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Sound Defense Alliance - Protecting Life in the Pacific Northwest

A briefing on real-time noise testing

SDA notified elected officials of preferred sites for the Congressionally mandated noise testing and asked those invited to participate to forward SDA’s concern to NAS Whidbey. After the Navy gave elected officials a briefing on the noise testing, the Navy requested that participants offer suggestions or concerns about the upcoming testing. The Navy did not disclose the location of any of the testing sites during the briefing, but stated it had equipment for only 12 sites. Here’s two responses from attendees:

San Juan County Council response letter to NASWI
Thank you for the webinar briefing last week. It was very informative. We have three points to make regarding your request from us for locations.
1. We request monitoring on SE Lopez Island at Point Colville. This is part of the San Juan Islands National Monument managed by the BLM. It fits your criteria of little other ambient noise. Your office has already received permission from the BLM district office to conduct the tests there. It is important because that area is impacted. It is actually closer to Ault Field than Anacortes. The FAA military flights altitude graph from 2016 shows many more flight tracks over Lopez than your modeling (slide 10) or flight track map indicate (slide 12). The public does not feel the modeling is accurate especially as you move further from the airfields. If these tests are to confirm the model then Lopez Island should be included.
2. We ask that you have at least two monitoring sites on the Olympic Peninsula. One at Port Townsend and one in Olympic National Park. The peninsula topography is coastal plains on the sides and high elevations in the middle. It was stated during the webinar that the flights are too high to cause noise in excess of 50dba. However referring to the altitude mapping, flights are 16,000 – 18,000 feet MSL over the Olympic peninsula. The range averages elevations around 6000 ft so the aircraft actually have a noise profile more like 10 – 12,000 ft. above ground, which is similar to Whidbey Island.
3. We ask that you modify to your arrival/departure Noise contour map to reflect actual patterns. Your map shows only a small portion of Lopez Island in the landing pattern where the FAA shows activity that is more robust over the whole island.

40th District State Legislative Representative Alex Ramel response letter to NASWI:
Please consider this letter of support to prioritize one testing location for Point Colville, in San Juan County, in the 40th Legislative District. I’ve been hearing concerns about jet noise from residents of Lopez Island since I first expressed an interest in serving as a State Representative. I’m sure you’ve heard from many of the same community members. Accurate data to evaluate this noise would be extremely helpful in understanding the issue to support an informed community discussion.
Point Colville, part of the San Juan Islands National Monument on Lopez Island, meets the site location criteria outlined in the presentation on June 10th and has support from community leaders who are most vocal on this issue. I understand that there is support from the BLM Manager of the San Juan Islands National Monument.
Thank you for your continued leadership, and your willingness to hear the requests of the community members that we serve.


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