Aviation industry needs to take real action towards environmental sustainability with 125 million passengers forecast to fly to and from UK airports by 2023

Following the news (Tuesday 4 February) that the UK’s aviation industry is promising to reduce its net carbon emissions to zero by 2050;

Ben Cordwell, Associate Travel & Tourism Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view on the industry’s current issues:

“The UK aviation industry’s target to reduce its net carbon emissions to zero by 2050 seems an ambitious target.

“Alternative biofuels still produce carbon dioxide and GlobalData figures forecast over 125 million passengers will fly to and from UK airports by 2023. An increase of over 16 million passengers from 2018 brings with it an enormous increase in carbon emissions, something that seems very unlikely to be offset through the planting of trees.  

“As recently as November 2019, whistle-blowers exposed the ‘fuel tankering’ scandal, a procedure that deliberately adds weight to flights, increasing carbon dioxide emissions. The process sees planes filled with extra fuel, usually to avoid paying higher prices for refueling at their destination airport. These kinds of procedures point towards an industry that has little interest in real action towards environmental sustainability.

“If airlines want the public to believe they are serious about tackling climate change, transparency is needed moving forward. Perhaps then, we will begin to see positive change within the aviation industry.” 

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