EASA receives another iteration of centralized power from the Council of the European Union–Basic Regulation +

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EASA takes on new responsibilities

Council of European Union increases EASA’s powers

More Authority taken from CAAs

Documents expressed in very vague terms

In a process that is literally and figuratively foreign to Americans, the Council of the European Union passed REGULATION OF THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT AND OF THE COUNCIL on common rules in the field of civil aviation and establishing a European Union Aviation Safety Agency, and amending Regulations (EC) No 2111/2005, (EC) No 1008/2008, (EU) No 996/2010, (EU) No 376/2014 and Directives 2014/30/EU and 2014/53/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council, and repealing Regulations (EC) No 552/2004 and (EC) No 216/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council and Council Regulation (EEC) No 3922/91.The Council is the voice of the EU Member countries; its members are Ministers form each government. They meet quarterly to discuss, amend and adopt laws, and coordinate policies. The Council has the authority to commit their governments to the actions agreed on in the meetings.


The action, noted above and commonly referred to as the “Basic Regulation” is the ninth iteration, of granting by the EC to EASA[1] of increasing authority, which started in 2003. Described in the press release:


The document is 289 pages of VERY specific directions by the Ministers to the safety agency as to regulations/policies/procedures such as:

  • what authorities remain with the Member Countries’ CAAs,
  • the policies which will direct the regulations for the regulations as to operation/certification within the EU,
  • excluding military and certain small aircraft and aerodromes (airports)
  • allowing relegation of some authorities and consultation
  • Aviation Safety Programmes
  • the Environment
  • Third Country certifications, registries and operations
  • Pilots, cabin crews and related aviation safety professionals
  • UASs
  • Exchange of safety data
  • GNSS
  • Air operator certificates

The transition from these broad statements to specific rules will consume considerable time.

In the interim, the Basic Regulations have received, so far, endorsements from NBAA, GAMA, European Helicopter Association,  ERA, ASD, SAE, and others.

Support of general principles and less than explicit guidance is easily garnered. It will be fascinating to see if the stakeholders drop as the specifics are added. This regulatory accretion to Cologne may also serve as a catalyst within the existing sovereign Civil Aviation Authorities diminish, except the UK’s (?).


[1] EASA moved from a very modern building to a very creative redevelopment of the old Railway Agency headquarters..


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