CANSO has announced its strong vision to transform global air traffic management (ATM) performance and deliver seamless airspace globally. ‘Vision 2020’ lays out the most comprehensive strategic framework and supporting work programme ever created in CANSO and the ATM industry.
Vision 2020 has three core elements: being a strong Partner; creating Value for members and stakeholders; and optimising the efficiency and effectiveness of the Organisation. In addition, it focuses on two new areas of reform: Better Regulation and Service Priority. Vision 2020 is supported by the CANSO Work Plan which captures 126 supporting activities planned at global and regional level, each with detailed actions, deliverables and timescales.
Speaking at CANSO’s 17th Annual General Meeting, where CANSO Members approved the plan, Jeff Poole, CANSO Director General, said, “It is now widely recognised that the transformation of global ATM performance is essential if we are to rise to the challenges of increased safety, operational, technical, environmental and economic requirements. I am delighted that CANSO and its Members are committed to a strong vision and work programme that will lead the way and deliver global, seamless and safe airspace, based on cost-effective and efficient services, with sufficient capacity to meet the world’s air transport needs.”
Seamless air navigation means achieving air space continuum or ‘invisible’ borders for airspace customers such as airlines. CANSO recognises that seamless operations must be performance-driven and based on customer needs. They must be consistent with the ICAO Global ATM Concept of an integrated, global ATM system. They must also account for regional differences in traffic densities and complexity.
Poole added, “Vision 2020 reinforces the leadership role of CANSO in transforming global ATM performance. We are the global voice of ANSPs and global partner in the transformation of the aviation system; creating value for CANSO Members and our stakeholders across the air transport industry. But we must also deliver on our commitments, so the associated CANSO Work Plan is a vital programme management tool. It is an impressive inventory of the breadth and depth of activities already underway and planned by CANSO and its Members to fulfill the vision.”
Vision 2020 has been developed both by involving CANSO Members fully throughout the process but also by consulting with industry partners – airlines, airports, industry associations, military, governments and regulators. At World ATM Congress in Madrid in February 2013 CANSO asked these industry partners what they expect from the ATM industry. They made a series of requests and proposals that formed the basis of a comprehensive set of actions, with measurable deliverables, to improve the performance of ATM globally. These commitments have been incorporated into the CANSO Work Plan to achieve Vision 2020, which will be regularly adjusted in line with the changing needs of CANSO Members, their customers and industry stakeholders.
As a further springboard to achieving Vision 2020, CANSO is launching two new focus areas:
Better Regulation. The regulatory environment for ATM is complex and the industry is often faced with prescriptive, obsolete, inefficient and conflicting requirements that add unnecessary cost and undermine the ability to innovate and perform effectively. CANSO calls for a harmonised and consistent approach to regulation, and will provide renewed impetus for its long-standing call for the separation of regulation from service provision. It will also promote how better regulation can contribute to seamless airspace. Regulations should be proportionate, consistent, accountable, transparent and targeted. CANSO will highlight the areas for change, calling for a full impact assessment of regulations and asking regulators to focus on the delivery of performance outcomes rather than prescriptive inputs.
Service Priority. ‘First-come-first-served’ is an increasingly outdated concept in ATM. Some airlines adopt new technologies and capabilities faster than others. But they are asking why they should invest if there are no advantages and if they cannot realise the full capability of their equipment. CANSO believes that service priority should now be redefined and is exploring the concept of ‘most-capable-best-served.’ This will encourage airlines to invest and enable them to make best use of advanced technology, such as increased surveillance capability in remote places and improvements in communications and decision-making tools. The shift will not be easy and will require a new mind-set and approach both by pilots and controllers, as well as changes to airspace construction, ATC procedures, flow management and other issues. Industry collaboration is essential to the success of this initiative and CANSO recommended the convening of an industry wide study group to consider the issue at ICAO’s 12th Air Navigation Conference in November 2012 and ICAO’s 6th Air Transport Conference in March 2013.
Poole concluded, “Vision 2020 marks the next stage of CANSO’s strategic journey. It is both a natural evolution and a huge step forward in leading and delivering significant value through the transformation of ATM performance. I believe that history will see this as a pivotal turning point for the industry.”