British Airways short-haul services have the quietest planes at Heathrow, according to the first list of airline noise performance at the airport. (Source: Press Association)
BA short-haul topped a 50-strong table compiled by Heathrow bosses, with Virgin Atlantic's Little Red domestic service the second least-noisy carrier, and Irish airline Aer Lingus third.
Major carriers took up the rest of the top 10, with all 50 carriers being judged on six noise-related criteria. Fourth least-noisy was American Airlines, followed by Qantas, Emirates, American carriers United Delta, Dutch carrier KLM and Deutsche Lufthansa.
In 50th and last place, and by definition the noisiest of the major carriers at the west London airport, was Polish airline LOT, with Israeli carrier El Al 49th and Thai Airways 48th.
The scores were based on noise levels during the period July to September. Of the listed airlines, 80% met Heathrow's minimum requirements on noise, with 94% meeting at least five of the six categories.
Heathrow sustainability director Matt Gorman said: "We are at the forefront of international efforts to tackle aircraft noise and are committed to continuing to reduce the number of people affected by noise.
John Stewart, chair of noise campaign group Hacan, said: "We welcome this initiative from Heathrow. It is a constructive move to improve the noise climate."
BA head of environment Jonathon Counsell said: "We are very pleased that our short-haul fleet has proved itself the quietest at Heathrow, and we know we can do more. Overall, we have a noise reduction target to reduce the average noise per flight by 15% by 2018."