Advocacy – Current Topics

Response to the NAV CANADA Proposed Level of Service Changes

COPA has addressed a letter to the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Marc Garneau, to urge the Government of Canada to support air navigation services in Canada throughout the COVID-19 global pandemic. COPA indicated the importance of the 30 locations currently under review, noting that their closure would impact the post pandemic recovery and could cause an increase in aviation incidents and accidents.

In addition to this, COPA has sent separate letters to NAV CANADA expressing concerns with the proposed changes in levels of service. Thank you all for the valuable feedback you provided to assist us in our response.

Letter of Support for the Continued Operations of the Oshawa Airport

Earlier in 2020 COPA addressed a letter to the Minister of Transport, the Honourable Marc Garneau, to show support to the Oshawa Executive Airport regarding the surrounding resident noise complaints, specially targeted at flight training. The City of Oshawa leadership has taken step to make it clear to all that they consider the noise associated with flight training operations at the airport to be a significant problem.

On February 8, 2021 at approximately 17:10 the Oshawa City Council members in attendance voted unanimously to direct the Airport Manager, in consultation with the Commissioner of Development Services, to engage a qualified, independent consultant with familiarity of the requirements of Transport Canada Advisory Circular 302-002 to manage the process that would result in the creation of TC-controlled Noise Abatement procedures at the Oshawa Airport. The City has committed to spend up to $60,000 exclusive of H.S.T to complete this project. The various stages of the process (11 in total) detailed in the Advisory Circular are designed to ensure that equity and fairness are observed and that consultation with the affected parties is completed.

Response to the New Landing Fees at CYOS

Earlier this month the Owen Sound City Council was publicly presented with a petition, organized by Fly YOS chief flying instructor and signed by more than 2800 people, to halt the implementation of the Collection of Landing Fees on all GA aircraft, regardless of weight at the CYOS airport. Council made it very clear that they were not swayed by the petition. They have decided to wave the fees for the flight training operation at the airport but all users, both local and itinerant can expect to be billed $35.00 for each landing. Fees will be collected by the airport management organization. Details on the council decision were recorded in the Owen Sound Sun Times weekly newspaper. The article can be found here

Response to the Red Deer Overnight Air Traffic Level of Service Review

COPA was notified that about an Aeronautical study currently being conducted reviewing the overnight Air Traffic Services being offered at the Red Deer Airport and offers the following response to NAV CANADA’s Aeronautical Studies team. COPA believes that the current overnight level of service currently being provided at the Red Deer airport by the Flight Service Station should remain the same in order to insure the safety of GA pilots who depend on the aviation weather information, runway surface condition reports and safe guidance provided by the FSS in case of disorientation.

Support for Golden Airport in British Columbia

COPA is very pleased to announce that the efforts to advise the municipal leadership that airports such as theirs’s is a viable engine of growth and prosperity has resulted in good news.

The Town of Golden has commissioned a comprehensive review of the current and potential future roles of Golden Municipal Airport. HM Aero Aviation Consulting has been retained to complete an Airport Viability Study. The study will involve the evaluation of airport infrastructure, operations, financial standing, and the identification of potential aeronautical and non-aeronautical business opportunities. Click here for more information.

COVID-19 Response

The current COVID-19 pandemic has taken a drastic toll on aviation operations in Canada and around the world. To mitigate some of the effects and ensure best outcomes for GA pilots, COPA has been working closely with an industry working group to advocate for what we believe are necessary programs and exemptions. You can read our Joint Aviation Leadership letter to P.M. Justin Trudeau here. Many such exemptions have already been put in place, the full list is available on the Transport Canada website for COVID-19 aviation updates. As aviation activities resume, we also recommend consulting our GA aircraft disinfecting tips when returning to flight training or aircraft renting.

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10-Year Propeller Overhauls

Requirements for complete propeller overhauls every 10 years are sometimes burdensome, expensive, and are we sure they measurably increase safety? COPA is leading the effort to allow owners of constant-speed propellers used in non-commercial, piston operations, to be exempted from the requirement to overhaul at 10 years of calendar time. These owners would be allowed to operate “on condition,” subject to any applicable airworthiness directives.

COPA ELT Advocacy

In November 2020 Transport Canada was permitted to implement a significant change to CARs concerning the application of the 406 ELT for all aircraft flying in Canadian airspace. In brief, except for local flights that do not go beyond 25 nm from the point of origin, and for specific types of aircraft such as gliders, balloons, ultralights and gyrocopters, the rest of the operators must have a property installed 406 ELT fitted to their aircraft(s) by November 2021 for commercial operators, and November 2025 for private, recreational operators.

While COPA’s position remains that this locating technology has a poor track record of activation in a crash to be able to broadcast its position, we are satisfied that most GA operators will have several years to comply. COPA favors adoption of new and emerging technologies, such as ADS-B (see below), to serve as a reliable and more effective alternative. COPA’s president has written several op-eds in various media on this topic. If your aircraft has an ADS-B Out system with antenna diversity, you can help us to gather data on the topic. Fill out your information here if you are equipped or share this form with someone who is.

ADS-B Mandate in Canada – and ELT replacement

General Aviation aircraft fall under Phase III of Nav Canada’s proposed ADS-B mandate. The proposal is for all aircraft operating in transponder-required airspace to be equipped with 1090ES ADS-B Out. Read our position here. COPA is currently working with Nav Canada on the issue of Antenna Diversity, which would add significant cost to any ADS-B installations. Pilots should note that equipment meeting the FAA’s 2020 mandate for 978UAT (ground-based) ADS-B will not be compliant in Canadian airspace.

ADS-B’s future place in SAR 

See this presentation on how satellite-based ADS-B can be the perfect SAR enhancement and potentially replace the requirement for a 406MHz ELT.

Economic Impact of General Aviation in Canada

Click here to read COPA’s 2017 study that highlights the economic impact General Aviation contributes to Canadian communities and to the national economy. The study, compiled by Vancouver-based InterVISTAS, estimates that General Aviation operations in Canada contributes $9.3 billion in economic output nationally and directly accounts for almost 36,000 full time jobs in communities across the country. The report also highlights the benefits that General Aviation operations bring to communities in terms of tax revenues, direct, and indirect employment.

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Aerodrome Development

In response to the new regulations governing aerodrome construction and expansion which came into effect January 1st, 2017, COPA has been working collaboratively with Transport Canada on a new Advisory Circular which will provide clear direction on the requirements for consultation. We look forward to advancing the second phase (see below) of this initiative later this year which will require outside developers to consult with aerodromes and local aviation communities on developments or works which may impact airport operations.

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COPA has been actively discussing the BasicMed file with AOPA’s senior staff as well as with senior officials at Transport Canada and establishing an action plan based on what is possible, what is achievable, and what courses of action will best benefit pilots on both sides of the border. In that regard, COPA has developed a proposal that would allow BasicMed operations in Canada that abide by current conditions in place for Recreational Pilot Permit (RPP) holders. In return, we are calling on the FAA to revise the Special Flight Authorization regime to allow Canadian RPP holders to operate Certified, Amateur-Built, and Limited-class aircraft in the United States. Read the full text of COPA’s proposal. COPA has also been working through IAOPA to develop an ICAO medical certification standard. A review has been set in motion which will look at the medical certification protocols of ICAO member countries to find commonalities and develop an ICAO standard for light aircraft medicals.

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Remote Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) 

RPAS technology is advancing at an incredible pace. COPA is proud to be playing a leading role in Transport Canada’s drone policy development process, advising the regulator on proposed guidelines for airspace usage in and around aerodromes. Visit our RPAS page to learn more.