Editorial: It’s not NIMBYism to express concerns about F-35s


Excerpted from The Capital Times, Sept 11, 2019

Madison has a reputation for asking tough questions regarding new plans and projects. Sometimes, Madisonians are accused of engaging in knee-jerk “Not in My Back Yard” NIMBYism when they keep demanding answers. But that’s not the case with the questioning of the proposal by the U.S. Air Force to base F-35 fighter jets at Madison’s Truax Field.

Truax, the old “Madison Army Airfield,” has been a part of this community since the early days of World War II, and Madisonians are used to planes flying overhead. But the draft report from the U.S. Air Force and National Guard Bureau on the possible environmental impacts of basing F-35s at Truax alarmed a good many Madisonians.

“Based on context and intensity, the change in the noise environment associated with the Proposed Action would be considered significant in the area surrounding the airfield,” asserts the report, which estimates that 2,215 additional people would be exposed to sound levels that would be above-average compared to the general population. These noise conditions would, according to the report, make roughly 199 acres of land “potentially incompatible for residential use.”