Latin American airline association ALTA is working with the Colombian Government on a project that aims to ultimately permit all scheduled commercial operators to overfly the region’s military airspace over Palanquero.
The project is part of a larger effort by ALTA to convince Latin American countries to allow overflying of restricted airspace as a means of providing airlines with fuel savings and emissions reductions.
“We’ve been able to work with the defense department in Colombia and airlines involved on a solution to allow the commercial carriers to overfly that [Palanquero] airspace,” revealed ALTA executive director Alex de Gunten during a roundtable interview with flightglobal.com's premium news site ATI and Flight International journalists on 15 January.
He notes that ALTA has been working on the project “for a year and a half” and that the scheme promises important gains in efficiency for airlines.
Phase one of the project, which is poised to begin, entails a test period during which a number of carriers will have rights to overfly Palanquero. Should this prove a success, phase two will see all domestic and international operators with appropriate navigational equipment given the ability to overfly the airspace.
Other countries being targeted by ALTA for overflying of restricted airspace include Mexico, says de Gunten.
Source: ATI, flightglobal.com's sister premium news site