"This report presents the results of our audit of the use of the National Airspace System (NAS). The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure requested this audit to provide policymakers with a common understanding of who uses the NAS as they consider how to finance the aviation system into the future. Disagreement among stakeholders regarding their use of the NAS makes it difficult to evaluate Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) financing alternatives. Our specific objectives were to determine: (1) how different groups use NAS elements, (2) how that usage contributes to aviation congestion, (3) whether NAS users can be grouped in a meaningful manner based on their usage of the system, and (4) how good a proxy is jet fuel for use of FAA air traffic services. We examined FAA fiscal year (FY) 2005 flight activity data1 and other data regarding the use of FAA tower, terminal, and en route services by different aircraft types and user groups. We also assessed the relationship between jet fuel consumption and use of FAA's air traffic control services in several representative markets."
FAA Report Number: CR-2008-028
U.S. Dept. of Transportation, OIG: http://www.oig.dot.gov/