Our mission is to stop the harm that the basing of F-35 fighter jets at Truax Field, Madison will inflict. In addition, we work to stop the negligent pollution of our waters and force the clean-up of existing contamination of the water supply emanating from the base.  

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    Upcoming Events

      The Madison chapter of World Beyond War is very active in efforts and movement-building to prevent nuclear war, including opposing the F-35 fighter jets. Please visit their website for a listing of upcoming events, including letter-writing, community outreach, debates and films: worldbeyondwar.org/madison

      World Beyond War.org logo

      View live noise monitoring in East and North side Madison neighborhoods.

      1 hour noise meter reading graph

      This is a volunteer project carried out with assistance from Safe Skies Clean Water Wisconsin and SASY Neighborhood Association. (Details)

      LAST MAY

      I watched two 
      barn swallows swoop
      the field we had planted.
      unlike the two
      National Guard jet
      fighters which had
      roared us again
      and again a hour
      earlier, the swallows
      were not armed with
      four rockets each, and
      did not anger me
      because I knew
      what nation they
      guarded, and I sang
      aloud to honor them
      and their nation.

      Gogisgi-Carroll Arnett, French/Cherokee poet

      Watch this 12-minute video to learn more about the damaging effects of F-35 fighter jet noise on children.

      produced by Safe Skies Clean Water Wisconsin, April 2023

      Transcript (PDF)

      Colonel Rosanne Greco, USAF (Ret.) sat down for a Zoom meeting on April 15, 2023 to discuss the Burlington, Vermont-area efforts to prevent the F-35 jet from being based in that area.

      Media links on arrival of the first F-35s

      Why we’re opposed

      Download our detailed brochure here

      The F-35s are expected to be four times louder than the current F-16s. There would be an initial 47% increase in military operations and 27% long-term. The level of noise can have a detrimental effect on a variety of people including those with PTSD, autism, mental illness and other neurological and sensory vulnerabilities. Children will especially be affected.

      The number of households within the 65 dB contour zone would increase by 1,019 and the number of people exposed would increase by 2,215. One hundred and thirty-two households and 292 people would be located in the 75dB contour zone where housing is “incompatible.”

      Some noise abatement funds may be available through the FAA after a lengthy review process which would not begin until about two years after “beddown” begins and flights are stabilized. The initial increase in flights is due to having both F-16s and F-35s at the base.

      There will be a significant disproportionate impact to low-income and minority populations as well as children, according to the Environmental Impact Statement produced by the Air Force.

      Medical studies have shown that noise has a far reaching impact that can lead to stress, sleep disturbance, high blood pressure, heart disease and strokes. Children will be particularly impacted by increased noise levels, producing cognitive impairment, negative effects on reading and memory, and post-traumatic stress. Children in the Truax area are already struggling prior to starting school, according to a 2018 Madison neighborhood study, with less than half considered “kindergarten ready.” In a city struggling to overcome persistent racial disparities, flying an outrageously noisy fighter jet over elementary schools is likely to intensify the equity injustice.

      The U.S. Department of Defense is the world’s largest institutional user of petroleum, and therefore the single largest producer of greenhouse gases in the world, with the largest portion of Pentagon fuel consumption being for military jets. (Brown University study) And in 1997 the US negotiating team won a blanket military exemption under the Kyoto climate accord; thus military emissions do not need to be reported to the United Nations. Learn more

      Negative impacts of noise on children Include cognitive impairment, reading, memory and post-traumatic stress. Each jet will emit seven tons of CO2 for every hour in flight. The F-35s will also emit other harmful chemicals and fine and large particulates, making breathing difficult for everyone, but particularly children. Learn more

      Because of the nature of the plane’s composition and its stealth coating, a crash of the F-35 in or near Madison would emit toxic fumes for miles, and putting out an F-35 fire would require many times more PFAS-containing fire-fighting foam.

      Pilots at Truax will be training to fly the F-35A fighter jet, a plane designated as a key part of the US strategic nuclear force in the Pentagon’s 2018 Nuclear Posture Review.

      All F-35s will eventually be capable of carrying two B61-12 variable capacity nuclear warheads, up to four times more powerful than the bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Truax would not initially have nuclear weapons onsite but, if the planes were given a nuclear mission, the military is not required to disclose this to the public.

      The F-35 is the most expensive weapons system in history and will cost US taxpayers $1.7 trillion over the life of the project. The cost of each F-35A to taxpayers is $110.3 million, according to the Center for Defense Information, and and the cost to taxpayers of the Truax squadron will be $2,206,000,000. Each hour of flight is about $40,000 per plane.

      A portion of the cost for Truax to accommodate the F-35s will be borne by state and local taxpayers. This includes the clean-up of existing contaminants at the base and noise mitigation and housing for residents who need to be relocated. Dane County is responsible for all noise abatement, not the military. Costs could reach tens of millions to relocate people and to soundproof homes in the impacted areas. There will be no funding for abatement of the homes of the 60,000 people immediately outside of the 75 dB zone. And there is no way to mitigate noise outdoors.

      Many military experts contend that fighter jets would be useless in a nuclear war and other jets are better suited for conventional warfare.

      Our current security threats come from pandemics, cyber attacks and terrorism, none of which the F-35 can counter. The Air Force states the F-35 project will bring “no significant impacts to socioeconomics” and only provide “up to” 64 jobs for Lockheed Martin and regular Air Force personnel. The F-35 is a “job killer” when compared to jobs that can be created in education, clean energy, health care and infrastructure for the same investment. Trading in fighter jets for a new Air National Guard mission, such as medical and disaster relief, will provide more jobs and align more closely with Madison’s progressive values.

      War spending created fewer jobs than similar spending investment in clean energy, public education, and health care. Learn more

      Legal Actions

      Air Force & Truax Information

      Air Force Record of Decision
      Final Environmental Impact Statement
      Truax Construction Timeline

      Take the F-16 Noise Survey (See results) …

      We still have 2-sided yard signs left! Please contact yardsigns@safeskiescleanwaterwi.org

      Please continue to contact public officials, write letters to the editor, call in to radio shows and share your views with others!


      • Dutch Court Moves to Block Export of Fighter Jet Parts to Israel
        New York Times, By Cassandra Vinograd, Feb. 12, 2024 Read the full article online A court in the Netherlands on Monday ordered the Dutch government to stop exporting parts for F-35 fighter jets to Israel, a move that reflected mounting alarm over the heavy civilian toll of Israel’s war in Gaza but was unlikely to have…
      • ‘My heart starts to palpitate’: First of three listening sessions on the F-35 planes flying out of Truax Field
        Channel 27 WKOW TV, Grace Ulch, Feb 2, 2024 View article online (Emphasis ours) MADISON (WKOW) — Thursday night was the first chance for people who live in Madison to weigh in on the F-35 fighter jets that fly out of Truax Field. “We want to create that connection, find out how people want the…
      • ‘No one’s here to listen’: Noise, pollution concerns only grown since F35s arrived, community says at listening session
        Channel 3000Arman Rahman, Feb 1, 2024 MADISON, Wis. — Since the F35 jets landed at Truax Field roughly a year ago, residents at the first of a series of listening sessions organized by the Squadron and Air Force said their fears about noise and environmental pollution have come true. The sessions are part of an…
      • Capital Times – Madison needs more transparency on F-35s, residents say
        Capital Times Madison needs more transparency on F-35s, residents say By Andrew Bahl February 2, 2024 The Wisconsin National Guard should be more transparent about its efforts to reduce noise from the F-35 fighter jets now taking off and landing in Madison, residents said Thursday night at a military-sponsored event designed to gather feedback on…
      • Dane County airport needs new location, not new name
        Wisconsin State Journal Letter to the Editor Dane County airport needs new location, not new name The State Journal’s editorial last Sunday, “Airport needs a new name to fly higher,” suggested we call the Dane County Regional Airport “Madison International.” For many Madison residents, a new name would just be “lipstick on a pig.” At…
      • Why are F-35 fighter jets flying over Madison, and why are they so loud?
        Jan 10, 2024 | Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Claire Reid Read the full story online   Noisy and distracting. The source of valuable economic and job opportunities. An environmental threat. “The most advanced fighter weapons system that the Air Force has ever fielded.” All this and more has been used by citizens, politicians and experts to describe the…
      • After Hamas attack, US rushed new F-35 capabilities, parts to Israel
        After Hamas attack, US rushed new F-35 capabilities, parts to Israel: Officials A wide-ranging hearing on the F-35 revealed new details on the aircraft’s current operations, as well as its developmental struggles, including its beleaguered TR-3 upgrade. By   MICHAEL MARROWon December 12, 2023 at 6:05 PM An Israeli F-35I takes off from Uvda airbase during…
      • PFAS clean-up liability delays vote on airport deal between Dane County, National Guard
        December 22, 2023, Lucas Robinson | Wisconsin State Journal Read online at Madison.com The Dane County Board, county lawyers and the National Guard are at odds over a contract some supervisors and environmentalist groups fear will let the military get out of legal responsibility for its role in PFAS contamination of drinking water in the…
      • Airport lease lets military off the hook for pollution, critics say
        By Andrew Bahl and Allison Garfield | The Capital Times, December 4, 2023 Read online Residents, environmental advocates and elected officials are worried an effort to formalize the Wisconsin Air National Guard’s presence at the Dane County Regional Airport could make it hard to hold the military legally responsible for pollution. The Dane County Board…
      • Wisconsin Air National Guard Starts F-35 Fighter Jet Community Outreach Program
        Back in March, Senator Tammy Baldwin announced a $798,000 grant so the Wisconsin Air National Guard (WANG) can “conduct community outreach, noise mitigation planning, and prepare for the F-35s arrival at Truax Field.” Earlier this month, WANG quietly started this outreach program with a new web site:  https://lab2.future-iq.com/madison-f35/ When Baldwin announced the grant, Safe Skies responded with…
      • Capital Times – F-35 jets at Truax Field are so loud residents say they’re harmful Inbox – – – F35s/DISCUSS
        Capital Times F-35 jets at Truax Field are so loud residents say they’re harmful By Andrew Bahl Tom Berman considers his home to be pretty close to paradise, whether that means sipping a cup of coffee in the morning, splitting wood for his heater or sitting with his wife in the garden after work. That…
      • The Power and Practice of Non-Violent Action with Dr. Maria J. Stephan – Nov 15
        Award winning author of Why Civil Resistance Works, diplomat, and activist will share experiences of successful non-violent actions, throughout history and around the world. November 15, 2023 7-8 p.m. Tripp Commons, Memorial Union, UW Madison https://www.interfaithpeacewg.org/events Erica Chenoweth – Why Civil Resistance Works: Nonviolence in the Past and Future – Dartmouth