The CAA, the Director of Civil Aviation (the Director), the Minister of Transport (supported by the Ministry of Transport) all have a role in noise related matters. These roles are as follows:

  • The Minister of Transport has explicit power to make Civil Aviation Rules related to noise abatement in the vicinity of airports (see the Civil Aviation Act 1990, section 29B).
  • Under section 72I of the Act the Director shall “take such action as may be appropriate in the public interest to enforce the provisions of this Act and of regulations and rules made under this Act”.

In summary, the Minister of Transport has powers to make Civil Aviation Rules related to noise control and if this is done, the Director is required to enforce them.

A number of existing Civil Aviation Rules relate to noise. Those rules fall into two categories:

  • technical standards for noise emissions for specified types of aircraft (Civil Aviation Rules, Part 21 Certification of Products and Parts); and
  • operational limitations in the vicinity of airports (Civil Aviation Rules, Part 93 Special Aerodrome Traffic Rules and Noise Abatement Procedures). These relate to Auckland, Wellington and Paraparaumu only.

While the CAA has a role, it is not the relevant body for implementing all noise abatement controls at aerodromes. Many such controls are authorised by the Resource Management Act 1991 and are dealt with by territorial authorities.

Some forms of noise abatement control, however, involve the regulation or use of airspace and the operating procedures of aircraft. As the regulatory authority responsible for aviation safety, this is the sole responsibility of the Civil Aviation Authority.

If territorial authorities ascertain that there is an aircraft noise problem within their jurisdiction that can only be dealt with by airspace control, a case can be put to the Civil Aviation Authority by the territorial authority in the form of a petition to amend Part 93 to add specific noise abatement procedures in the vicinity of an airport.