The recent COVID 19 pandemic put a spotlight on the challenges facing airports in preparing to address pandemics in the future. State and local governments own and operate many of the airports in the U.S. and airports are like cities in many respects. In responding to potential pandemics, airports would benefit from developing strategies for addressing the federalist system in public health governance. The risk of future pandemics also has a bearing on how airports move forward to address challenges they face regardless. Airports would benefit from being aware of legal considerations relating to the risk of future pandemics that could affect how they address other significant challenges in areas such as environmental sustainability (noise abatement and air emissions).