Cheap Flights and Climate Change

Cheap Flights and Climate Change

What can be done about this increasingly worrying contribution to global warming?

The most important options to reduce aircraft CO2 emissions are:

Changes in aircraft and engine technology; use of alternative fuels, such as (sustainably produced) biofuels; regulatory and operational measures such as improvements in air traffic management; economic measures such as inclusion of aircraft emissions in emission trading schemes.

But, as Giovanni Bisignani, manager of International Air Transport Association (IATA), stated: “Emissions trading schemes only make sense with efficient infrastructure. The IPCC estimates that there is 12% inefficiency in air traffic management globally: we produce up to 73 million tonnes of carbon emissions each year by aircraft flying inefficiently due to air traffic management limitations”. **

On a personal level we could ask ourselves especially in the developed world: “Do we really need to fly so frequently?” The use of telework, teleconference and video conference could be largely increased to plan work and meetings. Can’t the development of land and air transportation infrastructures be balanced better according to the real needs of people and businesses? Trains could connect cities better and more cheaply for example in Europe, where the prices are not competitive with those of many flights anymore (and night train services have been reduced if not cancelled).

Life styles do matter because if millions of people want to have cheap weekends in relatively close tourist locations, many flights are needed to satisfy their desires and consequently a lot of pollution is generated. Also, our per capita emissions could be cut also by reducing the “surplus” trips, by slowing down our life rhythms and enjoying more local attractions in our free time. Who knows? We could discover the “exotic” in our own neighborhoods without flying to the Caribbean Sea…

Furthermore the relationship between the costs and the environmental externalities (i.e. costs not included in the economy like health damages caused by pollution) needs to be considered as well: there are higher marginal impacts for short-distance flights that should be considered in prices paid by passengers.

All these political, technological and personal choices are some of the good examples needed by the developing countries to follow the 21st century’s Western society along a new sustainable path which looks like the only good alternative forward.

**”Talks to reduce aircraft global-warming emissions

For further information on Climate Change please visit the Responding to Climate Change website –

Gadget Concept: Glastonbury Solar Tent From Orange | GadgetReview

The Glastonbury Solar Tent is made from a photovoltaic fabric that has special solar threads woven in so you’ll never be without power for your GPS device or cell phone. To monitor power usage and storage the tent comes with a wireless …

How To Build Solar Panel For Home

How To Build Solar Panel For Home. Learn how to build solar panel for home and generate free supply of electricity using the Sun’s energy.

Asiajin » Total Solar Eclipse Of July 22nd: Where Are You Tracking It?

In the morning of July 22nd (Wed), 2009, we witness this century’s most perfect solar eclipse in the regions of Central Asia, South East Asia, Japan and Micronesia. The eclipse can be observed from 9:30am to 0:30pm. …

Find Articles » Solar Panels- For Green Revolution

Solar energy is the only energy which is widely and freely available. Solar power is the electric power which has been converted from sunlight. Photovoltaic cells help in direct conversion of sunlight to obtain electricity. …

Bishop Alan's Blog: Solar Heating Payback Time

This year with the help of Ken the Swimming Pool man in High Wycombe we have bitten the bullett and upgraded to Solar Heating. The first day temperature was up to 21 degrees. After the sun today, the water reached 31 degrees, …

Be Sociable, Share!
  1. No comments yet.
(will not be published)

  1. No trackbacks yet.