Here come the Drones … and the Concerns

Go Lean Commentary

Drones - SurveillanceThe Gee-Whiz days are over … for drones.

The initial excitement and fascination period seems to have ended. Now people are trying to curb, protect and run from all-things-drone.

This point is evident from the two foregoing articles & VIDEOS. Here come the drones, and here come troubles.

Despite the foregoing articles, the old adage still applies: “The early bird gets the worm”.

Story 1 – By: CBS News & The Associated Press

Title: Government moves to ban drones in 400 national parks

WASHINGTON — The National Park Service is taking steps to ban drones from 84 million acres of public lands and waterways, saying the unmanned aircraft annoy visitors, harass wildlife and threaten safety.

Jonathan Jarvis, the park service’s director, told The Associated Press he doesn’t want drones flushing birds from their nests, hovering over rock climbers as they cling to the sides of cliffs or buzzing across the face of Mount Rushmore.

Jarvis said he would sign a policy memorandum on Friday directing superintendents of the service’s 401 parks to write rules prohibiting the launching, landing or operation of unmanned aircraft in their parks.

Two large national parks, Grand Canyon in Arizona and Zion in Utah, have already changed their rules to ban drones. Some other parks have interpreted existing regulations to permit them to ban drone flights, but Jarvis said each park must change its “compendium” – a set of regulations unique to that park – if a ban is to be enforceable.

At Yosemite National Park in California, where officials announced last month they would adopt a policy prohibiting drone flights, hobbyists have been using unmanned aircraft to film the park’s famous waterfalls and capture close-up shots of climbers on its granite cliffs. Zion officials were spurred to take action after an incident in which an unmanned aircraft was seen harassing bighorn sheep and causing youngsters to become separated from their herd.

At Mount Rushmore in South Dakota, park rangers last September confiscated an unmanned aircraft after it flew above 1,500 visitors seated in an amphitheater and then over the heads of the four presidents carved into the mountain.

Drones - HoverFlowImagine you’re a big wall climber in Yosemite working on a four-day climb up El Capitan, and you’re hanging off a bolt ready to make a (difficult) move, and an unmanned aircraft flies up beside you and is hovering a few feet from your head with its GoPro camera running,” Jarvis said in an interview. “Think about what that does to your experience and your safety,”

Some drone operators have complained that a ban favors some park users over others. They also say many unmanned aircraft flights are made without incident and with respect for other park users and wildlife.

Unmanned aircraft range from no bigger than a hummingbird to the size of an airliner, and their capabilities are improving rapidly. Use is growing as their price tags decline. The park service wants to get out in front of that by putting rules in place now, Jarvis said.

“This is a different kind of aircraft, and it is being used in different ways than what we have seen from the (model aircraft) hobbyists,” he said. “We want to have some control over it now before it proliferates.”

The memorandum directs superintendents to continue to allow model aircraft hobbyists and clubs that already have approval to operate in some parks. Also, parks can continue to grant permits for drone flights for other purposes like research, search and rescue, and firefighting, he said. Commercial operators like moviemakers can also apply for a permit to operate a drone, he said.

“We would have to hear why they would necessarily need this type of equipment in order to accomplish their goals,” Jarvis said.

Brendan Schulman, a New York attorney representing several commercial drone operators, said the park service appears to be “overreaching its authority with respect to the existing regulations, which only address the use of passenger aircraft.”

“A penalty imposed on a personal drone operator could certainly be challenged on the basis that there does not appear to be a regulation addressing that activity,” he said.

While parks are changing their individual rules, the park service will be drafting its own rule to ban drone flights in parks nationwide, Jarvis said. He said he hopes to have a proposal ready in about 18 months.

The ban only affects what Jarvis described as “operations inside parks,” and not high altitude flights over parks.

The park service has been working closely with the Federal Aviation Administration, although the service’s action is separate from the FAA’s ban on commercial drone flights, he said.

The FAA ban is being challenged by drone operators represented by Schulman.

Two years ago, Congress directed the FAA to put regulations in place to provide for the safe integration of commercial drones into the national airspace. The regulations were supposed to be finished by September 2015, but the agency isn’t expected to make that deadline.

Last week, the FAA said it had granted the first permission for commercial drone flights over land.

Earlier this month, CBS News transportation correspondent Jeff Pegues reported that some Hollywood production companies are trying to win an exemption from the FAA to use drones in the U.S.

YouTube Video Sharing Site (Retrieved 06-25-2014) from:

Story 2 – By: Miguel Almaguer, NBC News

Title: Police investigate claims of peeping drones

Seattle police responded to an apartment complex after a woman said a drone was spying on her. The complaint raises interesting questions about drones and privacy.

Even though owning and flying drones is legal, the police will respond to privacy violations and other concerns. This drone is owned by Skyris Imaging, which owns an entire fleet, to photograph property, farm land and real estate. No laws appear to have been broken.

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy (Retrieved 06-25-2014)

Unmanned aircrafts are just another area of autonomous vehicles that the book Go Lean … Caribbean and aligning blogs have highlighted as being a source of future growth and jobs; 2 examples are listed here: The need for highway safety innovations – here comes Google Ghost ships – Autonomous cargo vessels without a crew

Autonomous vehicles are a subset of the field of robotics – this is science, not science fiction. This is the future direction for so many industrial endeavors. The Go Lean book identifies the returns on investment for communities that prepare and foster development in impending technology fields. The book asserts that there is a race to create solutions to ease the challenges associated with the agents of change (Technology, Aging Diaspora, Climate Change, Globalization). The question is: who will create the solutions for this marketplace? The book posits that Caribbean stakeholders cannot only consume, but must also create, produce, develop and help construct the “vehicles” to get its people to the future. This applies whether the vehicle is a physical or figurative application.

“Don’t be a ‘stock on the shelf’” – Caribbean music icon Bob Marley in the song: Pimpers’ Paradise (Uprising Album, 1980).

This book purports that a new industrial revolution is emerging and the Caribbean society must participate, not just spectate. This point is  pronounced early in the Declaration of Interdependence (Page 14), with these opening statements:

xxvi. Whereas the Caribbean region must have new jobs to empower the engines of the economy and create the income sources for prosperity, and encourage the next generation to forge their dreams right at home, the Federation must therefore foster the development of new industries… In addition, the Federation must invigorate the enterprises related to existing industries like tourism…– impacting the region with more jobs.

xxvii. Whereas the region has endured a spectator status during the Industrial Revolution, we cannot stand on the sidelines of this new economy, the Information Revolution. Rather, the Federation must embrace all the tenets of Internet Communications Technology (ICT) to serve as an equalizing element in competition with the rest of the world. The Federation must bridge the digital divide and promote the community ethos that research/development is valuable and must be promoted and incentivized for adoption.

The book Go Lean… Caribbean, serves as a roadmap for the introduction and implementation of the Caribbean Union Trade Federation (CU). This agency will assume jurisdiction for the Caribbean skies (airspace), much like the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) performs for the US. This role is not intended as just a regulatory arm, but a promotional agency as well. We must be partners with the aviation industry; and we want to be on the cutting-edge of unmanned aviation. We cannot be just a “stock on the shelf”. The failure to advocate in the aviation industry has already devastated Caribbean commerce, as dysfunction in regional air carriers has negatively affected tourism and the transport of tourists to their island resorts. This is happening now; this is real!

These issues were highlighted in previous blogs as follows: Lessons Learned from the American Airlines merger Air Antilles Launches St. Maarten Service

So this blog, and the undergirding book, is pinning for more than just “Gee-Whiz” avionics; this is championing a bigger cause, that of empowering Caribbean society. In fact the CU/Go Lean roadmap has these 3 prime directives:

  • Optimization of the economic engines in order to grow the regional economy.
  • Establishment of a security apparatus to protect the resultant economic engines.
  • Improve Caribbean governance to support these engines.

There is a lot at stake for the Caribbean in considering this subject area. According to the foregoing articles and VIDEOS, research-and-development (R&D identified in Go Lean as a community ethos) has started to deploy economic and security solutions with drones as effective tools. While there are still many growing pains to work through, the early adopters have gotten benefits … and profits.

Drones - WeatherThere are proponents and opponents of unmanned aviation, as depicted in the foregoing articles and VIDEOS.  One thing for sure, those “sweating the details”, resolving the issues are sowing the field for the many harvest seasons due to come from this industry space. The Go Lean book and blogs are hereby urging the Caribbean region to lean-in to this discussion, development and industry. The “harvest is great, while the workers are few” – The Bible (Matthew 9:37).

In the US, there is a 25-pound limit for “unmanned aerial systems”. This is regulated by the Federal Aviation Administration. The FAA has no jurisdiction in the Caribbean. Perhaps, the CU as the FAA counterpart can advocate a 30-pound limit, or some other rule changes that would be more industry-friendly. Also, testing-proving grounds abound in the Caribbean, with many remote islands and the 1,063,000 square-mile territory of the Caribbean Sea, which according to the roadmap would come under CU jurisdiction.

The Go Lean strategy is to confederate the 30 member-states of the Caribbean region to form the technocratic CU Trade Federation. The issues associated in this blog entry are too big for any one member-state, but a consolidated market of 42 million people allow for more economies-of-scale for generating returns on technological investments. Tactically, the Go Lean plan for a separation-of-powers allows the member-states to deputize authority of the Caribbean airspace to the one unified agency, with the mandate to promote, not just regulate. Operationally, there is no place with a greater need for unmanned aerial reconnaissance than the Caribbean. Every year, countless watercrafts become imperiled; the scanning & diagnostic capabilities on drones exceed human-eye capability for search-and-rescue. Other applications include pipelines, sea-bound wind farms, fairgrounds, isolated residents and Self-Governing Entities.

Drones - ShadowHawkIn general, there is the need for rules and public protection with evasive technologies like drones, but it is the assertion of the Go Lean book and subsequent blog entries that a protection mandate does not have to stifle technological innovation. A spirit of partnership in negotiations can foster a more productive business climate for R&D and a win-win for all stakeholders.

The book details community ethos to adopt, plus the executions of the following strategies, tactics, implementations and advocacies to forge R&D and industrial growth in Caribbean communities:

Community Ethos – Deferred Gratification Page 21
Community Ethos – All Choices Involve Costs Page 21
Community Ethos – Job   Multiplier Page 22
Community Ethos – Public Protection Over Privacy Concerns Page 23
Community Ethos – “Crap” Happens Page 23
Community Ethos – Lean Operations Page 24
Community Ethos – Return on Investments (ROI) Page 24
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact the Future Page 26
Community Ethos – Ways to Help Entrepreneurship Page 28
Community Ethos – Ways to Impact Research & Development Page 30
Community Ethos – Ways to Improve Negotiations Page 32
Community Ethos – Impact the Greater Good Page 37
Strategy – Vision – Confederating 30 Member-states in a Union Page 45
Strategy – Agents of Change – Technology Page 57
Strategy – Agents of Change – Aging Diaspora Page 57
Strategy – Agents of Change – Globalization Page 57
Strategy – Agents of Change – Climate Change Page 57
Tactical – Fostering a Technocracy Page 64
Tactical – Growing Economy – New High Multiplier Industries Page 68
Separation of Powers – Self Governing Entities Page 80
Separation of Powers – Interior Department Page 82
Separation of Powers – Regional Aviation Administration and Promotion Page 84
Implementation – Ways to Pay for Change Page 101
Implementation – Benefits from the Exclusive Economic Zone Page 104
Implementation – Steps to Implement Self-Governing Entities Page 105
Implementation – Ways to Deliver Page 109
Planning – 10 Big Ideas Page 127
Advocacy – Ways to Grow the Economy Page 151
Advocacy – Ways to Create Jobs Page 152
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Homeland Security Page 180
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Intelligence Gathering &   Analysis Page 182
Advocacy – Ways to Foster Technology Page 197
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Transportation Page 205
Advocacy – Ways to Improve Fisheries Page 210
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Urban Living Page 238
Advocacy – Ways to Impact Rural Living Page 239
Appendix – Industrial Sites at Sea-bound Wind Farms Page 335

Historically, forging change in the transportation sphere in the Caribbean has been burdensome – early adopters we are not. The region was very slow to adopt many provisions (seat belts, fast ferry, smoking on planes) that may be considered common sense by today’s standard. Managing change for the region must therefore be viewed as both an art and a science. The CU approach is different for spearheading this change of unmanned aviation – more technocracy, less democracy; (no need for consensus building).

The insights from the foregoing articles and embedded videos help us to appreciate that the future for unmanned aviation is now! We must therefore lean-in for the empowerments described in Go Lean … Caribbean. This roadmap allows us to build a better community and a better homeland to live, work and play. 🙂

Download the book Go Lean … Caribbean – now!

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