Sustainable aviation - how to really make flying carbon neutral

Sustainable aviation - how to really make flying carbon neutral

Welcome back. πŸ‘‹

It's time for the newest edition of the Greenifs sustainability newsletter. This week, let's explore the technologies and methods that are being researched to make flying more sustainable. Aviation related CO2 emissions produce around 2.5% CO2 emissions worldwide. More than that, it affects gases in the atmosphere and cause long-term decrease in ozone (O3); a decrease in methane (CH4); emissions of water vapor; soot; sulphur aerosols; and water contrails. All of this means that it accounts for about 3.5% of #globalwarming.

Thankfully, the industry was the first to implement industry wide goals for reducing their carbon emissions and has worked hard to make flying more sustainable. The effects of this are that it is that now, flights are about 50% more sustainable than they were in 1990. How this is done and what does the future hold? Let's explore.🧭

But first.

There are only 2 weeks left until the beginning of the 30dayearth sustainability challenge. Receive a new task and challenge yourself every day to take one step towards becoming more sustainable.

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πŸ“° News of the week:

πŸš€ The first carbon neutral space port in the world has opened in the UK. Orbex run Sutherland Spaceport in Scotland, already approved by the European Space Agency - ESA will launch its first rocket later this year. In addition to running the rockets on renewable #biofuels, the station used the peat, excavated during construction to reinforce native peatlands. This site will be used to launch satellites into space and will hopefully show the industry how to operate in an environmentally friendly way.

πŸ›¨ Deloitte released its business travel trends outlook. Because of environmental policies implemented in companies around the world, business travel budgets will be cut by 25-30% across all businesses by 2025. It will most likely be most impactful on short - haul flights (under 1100 km), with fly-shame movements in Germany and Scandinavia already reducing this type of flight numbers by almost 20%.

πŸ›ͺ🌳Green aviation technologies

What are the main tools that the aviation sector uses on their way to net zero emissions by 2050? The main two are:

  • Hydrogen fuel cells

Hydrogen fuel cells haven't been able to see widespread adoption in the automobile industry, however, it might be another story in aviation (and shipping), where readily available refuelling is not an issue. Hydrogen is much more lightweight than traditional aviation fuel and can be retrofitted onto already existing engines. This means an easy transition, without sacrificing range or speed can make aviation a zero-emission reality relatively quickly.

  • Sustainable aviation fuel

Another way the airline industry is curbing its emissions is through the use of SAF. Ryanair is using SAF for all of its flights leaving from Amsterdam Shiphol airport and other airlines are

The airline industry is one of the primary clients for sustainable fuel, used from . Using it the flight can have about 80% less total carbon emissions, without using existing farmland or excessive use of water.

πŸ™Fun and interesting facts:

Jets vs propellers - which are more sustainable and fuel efficient?

Although jet - powered airplanes are more popular for both regional and international flights, propellers still have their place in modern aviation.

And for short - haul (less than 1100 km) and lower altitude flights they are greatly more fuel efficient and suffer almost no speed penalty compared to jets.

As 86% of all flights worldwide were short - haul, the investment into propeller - driven aircraft has been increasing every year since 2010.

🌊 Sources

Deloitte business travel trends outlook - https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/focus/transportation/business-travel-trends-outlook-2022.html

Guide to sustainable aviation fuel - https://aviationbenefits.org/downloads/beginners-guide-to-sustainable-aviation-fuel/

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