Brexit, Aviation and the Withdrawal 6

IMG_1076As in “The Prisoner” the UK Chancellor of the Exchequer seems to have told the UK Prime Minister: I am not a number.   The Westminster Village is beginning to look more like The Village in the cult 1960s British TV series[1].  I don’t like being right on such matters.  But my last Blog did imply posturing in respect to EU-UK negotiations is the purview of Number 10 Downing Street.  No others will be tolerated doing so in this UK Government.  We now have populist politicians on both sides of the Atlantic using all the tools of the trade to reinforce their power.  The extent to which people support this post-Brexit pathway to the future is extremely questionable.  One of my objections is that placing faith in powerful men hasn’t produced good outcomes in history.

Another objection, and more pertinent to the topic of aviation is that a failure to engaging with the complexities that are challenging our societies will just result in lost years of banalities, evasion and superficiality.  It’s my firm belief that “Europe”, wherever you put the boundaries, will only continue to be successful in meeting those challenges by encouraging creativity, imagination and innovation but in a stable environment where certain failures can be tolerated.  Truly learning from failure has been the stimulus for transformational benefits time and time again.

Now, the UK is not doing well, but neither is the Eurozone’s as GDP increased by only 0.1% in the fourth quarter of last year.   Plundering history to wrap us in a wall of nostalgia will do nothing to improve both our economic and environmental quality of life.  Focusing on Climate Change is going to require civil aviation to be radical.  Incremental progress, at great expense, is often a means to avoid change.  I’m sorry to say that has been the record of the Single European Sky (SES)[2] project in Europe.  Brexit or no Brexit, it makes little difference in respect of the future of how our airspace is best used.  Geographical boundaries are false boundaries when it comes to tackling Climate Change in the air.

Maybe this is a time for the UK to be like the grit in the oysters.  Taking everyone’s problem but, in standing outside the constraints of conventional intergovernmental processes being able to bring a fresh look at sustainable aviation.  That would be a better way than to grip nostalgia for a golden past.  The fundamentals of air traffic management were invented not more than 15 miles from where I’m siting[3].  So, let’s use history, without getting all starry eyed, and jointly build a sustainable future together.   EU-UK negotiations need to be open to this prospect.

Be Seeing You.


[2] The Single European Sky (SES) is a European initiative to improve the way Europe’s airspace is managed.


Author: johnwvincent

Our man in Southern England

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