Skywriting

Department for Transport written question – answered on 17th September 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Randerson Baroness Randerson Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Transport)

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of (1) the environmental impact of the reintroduction of skywriting, and (2) the impact of such a reintroduction on their plans for reducing carbon emissions; whether they intend to introduce legislation to implement such a reintroduction; and if so, when.

Photo of Baroness Randerson Baroness Randerson Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (Transport)

To ask Her Majesty's Government when the public consultation for the reintroduction of skywriting took place; how that consultation took place; how many responses they received; and what percentage of the responses were supportive of such a reintroduction.

Photo of Baroness Vere of Norbiton Baroness Vere of Norbiton Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

The public consultation for the legalisation of skywriting and skytyping aerial activities took place between 16 and 29 March 2020. The consultation document was published online at GOV.UK and respondents could submit their views via email or post to the Department for Transport. The Department received a total of 93 responses from members of the public, trade bodies, registered companies, and other respondents. 20% of the responses supported the legalisation of skytyping and skywriting.

The Department acknowledges some of the concerns raised on the environmental impacts but believes on balance these impacts should be minimal or can be mitigated against – as set out in the consultation document. Skytyping and skywriting activities can only take place in very specific zero wind and fine weather conditions. As such, there is not expected to be a significant volume of these activities, so any impact on emissions is deemed to be minimal.

As part of its net zero ambition, the Government is supporting the development of sustainable aviation fuels and other environmentally friendly technology.

A statutory instrument was laid on 17 April 2020 amending the Civil Aviation (Aerial Advertising) Regulations 1995, which concluded in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords on 11 June 2020. Skytyping recently featured as part of the VE 75 commemorations.

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