April 30, 2024

NBAA, along with more than 90 transportation industry trade associations and others, urged the FCC to vacate the controversial “Ligado Order,” a 2020 ruling that approves a high-speed broadband cellular network proven to interfere with GPS and satellite communications networks.

The coalition wrote President Joe Biden, as well as members of Congress, describing the risks the order creates.

“The Ligado Order threatens the critical GPS, satellite communications and weather forecasting services relied on by scores of millions of users every day. For this reason, the order has faced unified and unprecedented opposition from the federal government, including 14 federal agencies and departments. We greatly appreciate your administration’s opposition to the Ligado Order and the commitment by NTIA [National Telecommunications and Information Administration], on behalf of the Executive Branch, to actively pursue grant of its petition for reconsideration of the order,” stated an industry letter to President Joe Biden.

The letters also pointed to the May 2023 denial by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) of Ligado Canada’s application to operate a terrestrial service in identical frequency bands and similar operations to those proposed in the United States.

“ISED noted that, while harmonization with the United States on technological standards is important, outstanding concerns raised by numerous parties regarding the potential for interference from Ligado’s ATC operations made it premature to grant Ligado’s application despite the FCC’s issuance of the Ligado Order,” the letters state. “This ISED decision highlights the critical and unresolved interference concerns regarding Ligado’s proposed terrestrial operations.”

The NTIA petition is one of eight such calls before the FCC to reconsider its decision.

The letter concluded, “Four years after this flawed FCC decision, we once again urge you to work with the FCC to lift the cloud of potential harms from Ligado’s proposed terrestrial network to critical GPS, satellite communications, and weather forecasting services by staying the Order, addressing the previously unavailable information contained in the NAS Report, and granting the pending petitions for reconsideration.”

Review the letter to President Biden.

Review the letter to Congress.