Many residents have thought in recent years that the reason for the increase in aircraft noise was an increase in the number of aircraft flights over Montreal. We were unconsciously creating a correlation between the growth in passenger traffic (+ 50% approximately since 2004), and the increase in the number of flights. But this link did not hold up. On the contrary, the number of aircraft movements decreased by about 2% each year. That is why we could – and still can – say that the changes to flight paths and altitude levels were and are the cause of increased aviation noise pollution in Montreal.
However, the 2015 official data confirms that this trend is reversed: the number of flights is really on the rise, as the occupancy capacity of aircraft can no longer absorb the jump in passenger numbers. This increase in the number of aircraft movements was less than 1% in 2015, but we see that from quarter to quarter, the rate of increase is growing: it was 1.8% in Q4 of 2015.
Figures for the first quarter 2016 are even more striking: aircraft movements increased by 4% compared to the corresponding quarter of 2015, ADM revealed on 5 May.
Summary: noise levels will increase dramatically if no changes to aircraft navigation are made in the future.