Alliance of Residents Concerning O'Hare Inc.
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Air Pollution Studies:



Climate Change Studies:

  • Ruthenberg, Ross. "Earth's Thin Layer of Life," Apr. 22, 2008. All life depends on our earth's atmospheric oxygen, yet humanity fails to adequately grasp that all of this life-force oxygen is contained in an extremely thin skin surrounding the earth. Aviation deposits in the upper atmosphere in about 10 seconds a number of (ultra-fine) particles equal to all the blades of grass in a golf course that covers the entire earth's surface! That's a lot of particles.... and they stay there for a very long time, increasing by that amount every ten seconds!
  • Travis, David. "Contrails reduce daily temperature range: A brief interval when the skies were clear of jets unmasked an effect on climate," Nature, Vol. 418, 8 Aug 2002. Work demonstrates that jet contrails are apparently substantial enough to significantly reduce the temperature range in the U.S.-making days cooler and nights warmer. For the 3-day grounding period, we saw a significant jump in the temperature range (days were warmer and nights were cooler). Work not only showed that aircraft contrails may already be significantly affecting climate but also demonstrates the sensitivity of climate to our impacts by showing how quickly things reverted back to "normal" (i.e. similar to what we may have seen pre-1950s before the aviation boom) when we temporarily removed the effects of aircraft on U.S. Climate.
  • Smith, Louise and Paul Bolton, HOUSE OF COMMONS LIBRARY, "Aviation and Climate Change", RESEARCH PAPER 08/08, 24 JANUARY 2008. Government and the aviation industry recognize a link between aviation emissions and climate change. 


Fuel Studies:

Health Studies:




 Noise Studies:

  • Stage 4 Aircraft Noise Standards, [Federal Register: July 5, 2005 (Volume 70, Number 127)] [Rules and Regulations] 
  • Frost, Stephen J., "Pardon? A new proposal for reducing noise at Boston Logan International Airport." This PAE calculates noise costs from Logan airport and finds them to be considerable, 3 April 2004. 
  • Ruthenberg, R.E. "O’Hare Airport Noise Home Insulation Program Shortfalls," Apr. 19, 2005. Study shows that the industry and federal government is trying to deny noise mitigation to the noise-pummeled public by regulating its noise metric in its favor because of cost. Thus, locally, at the current paltry O’Hare “noise-proofing” Mayor Daley budgetary rate of about $18 million per year, it would take 180 years to complete the program to bring it up to even minimum W.H.O. protection recommendations of 55dB DNL. 
  • Burton, N J S., "Methods Of Assessment Of Aircraft Noise," London South Bank University, 2004. Results indicate that the Australian system operates the most stringent controls with regards to aircraft noise and residential planning whilst the systems adopted in the USA are the least strict.


  • Heidemarie Wende, Jens Ortscheid, "Requirements for the protection against aircraft noise." Federal Environmental Agency Berlin Germany, 2003/2004. Considerable nuisance can be avoided by limiting the exposure to aircraft noise (outside) to equivalent levels below 55 dB(A) by day and 45 dB(A) at night, and impairment of health can be avoided by limiting the exposure to aircraft noise (outside) to equivalent levels below 60 dB(A) by day and 50 dB(A) at night. 
  • Brown, Justin, Jesse Seidman, Neil Solanki, David Neinstein, Steven Factor. "O’Hare International Airport Noise Pollution: A Cost-Benefit Analysis." Winter 2004.


  • Timar, Gabriel S. "Effects of Noise." One may therefore conclude that noise pollution is not just a minor annoyance, but serious and sometimes fatal environmental hazard. Public health officials should look into the physical and emotional impact of noise pollution especially in communities exposed to frequent low level overflight. 
  • Bronzaft L., Arline. "US Aviation Policy Ignores Hazards of Noise," World Transport Policy & Practice, Volume 9, Number 1, (2003) pp37–40. United States policy underestimates the numbers of people affected by airport-related noises and dismissing evidence that aviation noise is harmful to health, quality of life and children’s development. 
  • Lederman, Norman, Aviation Low Frequency Noise. Low frequency noise pollution is an intrusive, damaging and unhealthy by-product of aviation.  Apr. 13, 2001.

  • Staffan Hygge, Gary W. Evans, Monika Bullinger. "A Prospective Study of Some Effects of Aircraft Noise on Cognitive Performance in Schoolchildren," Cornell University study finds airport noise impairs children's memory and reading ability. Excessive noise, such as jet aircraft flying overhead, impairs children's reading ability and long-term memory, a Cornell environmental psychologist and his European colleagues conclude in a study of schoolchildren living near airports. Journal of the American Psychological Society. Sept. 5, 2002. Volume 13: Issue 5. p 469-474.


  • Occupational and Environmental Medicine. "Increased prevalence of hypertension in a population exposed to aircraft noise," 2001. Report shows that people exposed to average aircraft noise levels of 55 decibels or higher were 60% more likely to report having been diagnosed with high blood pressure. Those with exposures exceeding 72 decibels were 80% more likely to report a high blood pressure diagnosis. 

  • P Lercher, G W Evans, M Meis and W W Kofler, "Ambient neighbourhood noise and children's mental health." Occupational and Environmental Medicine 2002;59:380-386. © 2002 Occupational and Environmental Medicine. Exposure to ambient noise was associated with small decrements in children's mental health and poorer classroom behaviour. The correlation between mental health and ambient noise is larger in children with early biological risk.

  • AMERICAN ACADEMY OF PEDIATRICS. Noise: A Hazard for the Fetus and Newborn. Volume 100, Number 4 October, 1997. Noise is ubiquitous in our environment. High intensities of noise have been associated with numerous health effects in adults, including noise-induced hearing loss and high blood pressure. The intent of this statement is to provide pediatricians and others with information on the potential health effects of noise on the fetus and newborn. 

  • Aviation and the Environment: FAA's Role in Major Airport Noise Programs. RCED-00-98 April 28, 2000.

  • Airport noise is harmful to the health and well-being of children and may cause lifelong problems.
    by Cornell University and others, March 1998. Study shows concern for the 10 million American schoolchildren living in airport affected areas. The study was supported, in part, by the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues, the National Institutes of Health, the Nordic Scientific Group for Noise Effects, the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency and the German Research Foundation.

  • Papers from Inter-Noise 98, the 1998 International Congress on Noise Control Engineering.

  • Kids near airports don't read as well because they tune out speech. by Cornell University, April, 1997.

  • Willy Passchier-Vermeer and Wim F. Passchier. "Noise Exposure and Public Health". Environmental Health Perspectives Volume 108, Supplement 1, March 2000. Exposure to noise constitutes a health risk. There is sufficient scientific evidence that noise exposure can induce hearing impairment, hypertension and ischemic heart disease, annoyance, sleep disturbance, and decreased school performance. 

  • Prof. W. Holland, Heathrow Association for the Control of Aircraft Noise. Noise and Health. June 1997.

  • Bronzaft, A. L. Effects of Noise. In Encyclopedia of Environmental Science and Engineering. (1998). Edited by J. R. Pfafflin and E. N. Ziegler. Netherlands: Gordon and Breach Science Publishers.  

    Review article includes definition of sound and noise, physiological and psychological effects of noise, responsibility of government, planning and designing for quiet, and discussion of efforts of organizations combating noises.

  • Bronzaft, A. L. Noise Sources, Health Impacts and Legal Remedies: A Psychologist's Perspective. (1998). Environmental Law in New York. New York: Matthew Bender.

    Discusses the sources of noises and mental and physical health impacts but the major focus is on the law and noise on the federal and New York State level.

  • Bronzaft, A., Ahern, K. D., McGinn, R., O'Connor, J. and Savino, B. Aircraft Noise: A Potential Health Hazard. In Environment and Behavior, January 1998, Volume 30, pp 101-113.

    Abstract: A questionnaire distributed to two groups, one living within the flight pattern of a major airport and the other in a non-flight area, sought to determine whether these groups would respond differently to questionnaires pertaining to noise, health perception, and quality of life issues. Nearly 70% of the residents living within the flight corridors reported themselves bothered by aircraft noise. Aircraft noise, in contrast to other bothersome noises, interfered more frequently with daily activities. Subjects who were bothered aircraft noise were more likely to complain of sleep difficulties and more likely to perceive themselves to be in poorer health. This study's finding of a possible relationship between noise and adverse health effects might encourage policy makers to enact pending anti-noise legislation and to fund further noise research.

    Please share this study with public officials, neighbors, and all interested in effects of noise on health. With 70% of the subjects reporting being bothered by noise, it can't be said that only a few are bothered. Daily activities interfered with: watching television, sleeping, opening windows, sleep. These are all important to a good "quality of life."

    For more information: Contact Arline L. Bronzaft, Ph.D., 505 E. 79th Street, New York, NY 10021. -- email: 

Possible Solutions:


Socio-Economic Impact Studies:

  (This section discusses projected socio-economic impacts of Sea-Tac expansion including changes in land uses, impacts on home ownership, local government revenues, impacts on residential property values and property tax revenues, effects on community facilities and services, educational impacts on children as well as impacts on School District revenues. This section recommends steps to mitigate community impacts associated with Sea-Tac expansion.)

  • * Helmuth, Obata + Kassabaum, Inc. -- ;Dallas, Texas; Raytheon Infrastructure Services, Inc. -- ;Denver & Philadelphia, in association with Thomas/Lane & Associates, Inc. -- ;Sea­Tac International Airport Impact Mitigation Study: Initial Assessment and Recommendations, February, 1997. Executive Summary. Prepared under a grant from the State of Washington. Reviews the costs of mitigating noise, transportation, property loss, tax loss, and school impacts of the proposed third runway at Sea­Tac.  

  • * Helmuth, Obata + Kassabaum, Inc. -- ;Dallas, Texas; Raytheon Infrastructure Services, Inc. -- ;Denver & Philadelphia, in association with Thomas/Lane & Associates, Inc. -- ;Sea­Tac International Airport Impact Mitigation Study: Initial Assessment and Recommendations, February, 1997. Section 9 ­ Potential Socio­Economic Impacts and Mitigation.

  • * Helmuth, Obata + Kassabaum, Inc. ­ Dallas, Texas; Raytheon Infrastructure Services, Inc. -- ;Denver & Philadelphia, in association with Thomas/Lane & Associates, Inc. -- ;Sea­Tac International Airport Impact Mitigation Study: Initial Assessment and Recommendations, February, 1997. Appendix A: Equity Issues and Socio-Economic Impacts. This section of the HOK Report examines the economic benefits and costs to the locally impacted communities. It generally concludes that the communities shoulder heavy costs for the impacts but receive relatively small amount of the benefits from the airport.

Water Studies:



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