It’s been seven years that the City of Culver City has been in litigation with the Federal Aviation Administration, and Mayor Goran Eriksson has been working on it for four of those years. The ruling from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on August 21, 2020 was another move in a long and complex game of chess that has seen Eriksson sitting at the board, strategizing successfully. Still, it’s a slow process.
Eriksson has been involved with “Fight the Flight,” the local group of activists protesting against Los Angeles International Airport and the FAA. “I am also the city representative on LAX Noise Round Table, and the co-chair of the National League of Cities (representing 19,000 cities) subcommittee on Aviation.”
So – what does the latest ruling mean? The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has ordered that the FAA ”fully comply with all applicable federal environmental laws … because the arguments raised in response to the summary disposition motion are sufficiently substantial to warrant further consideration by a merits panel.”
Getting Eriksson to offer some clarity on the situation, he summarized, “The short term issue is to have the planes fly the altitude that they are suppose to, between 6000 – 7000 feet over Culver City. With the LAX Noise Round table including the City of Los Angeles, our Representative Karen Bass and Senator Kamala Harris’ offices, we are working to have FAA keep the planes at the altitude that is published for this path over Culver City and the West Adams district.”
If you live under the flight path – as Eriksson does, too – the sound, frequency and altitude of flights to and from LAX have all increased. The FAA has refuted evidence that many residents have sent in, and the legal recourse has been lengthy and arduous.
“A more long term goal is to work through federal lobbying and legislation to require flight techniques for a much quieter decent, a more realistic measurement of noise generated from airplane overflights, more quiet air frames and engines, flight path dispersion in the FAA flight control system and/or change the flight path completely to be at a much, much higher altitude, and make the turn for lining up for landing at LAX close to the San Bernardino mountains.”
In addition, Eriksson observed, “To build a coalition on a national level with other cities around the nation, I have also gotten two of my resolutions passed (only Culver City council member that have accomplished that), one at National League of Cities and one at the U.S Conference of Mayors that now have made it to policy for those two strong lobbying organizations to work towards much quieter skies.”
Eriksson is running as an incumbent for one of three seats on the City Council in the November election.