The Federal Aviation Administration’s new air traffic control modernization plan called “NextGen” is causing a rise in aircraft noise complaints. The goal of the program is to make flying more efficient and save time.

The Federal Aviation Administration started revising flight paths and procedures around the United States in 2014 under its air traffic control modernization plan known as “NextGen.” The new procedures use more precise, satellite-based navigation that saves time, increases the number of planes airports can service, and reduces fuel burn and emissions.

Noise complaints exploded from San Diego to Charlotte, North Carolina, to New York as flights were concentrated at lower altitudes, in narrower paths and on more frequent schedules. The new paths often reduce the number of people exposed to noise, but those who get noise get it far more consistently. – AP

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