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OAG: Can Flying Ever Be Green? Towards Sustainability in Aviation

Aviation’s contribution to global emissions

Aviation contributes to climate change in a number of ways. The most frequently used measure is CO2 emissions which are predominantly released by the burning of fossil fuels in the engines used to make aircraft fly. Research shows that aviation probably accounts for about 2.5% to 2.8% of global CO2 emissions, depending on the source (Our World in DataInternational Energy Agency) . When you take into account other gas emissions from aircraft as well as the effect of vapour trails, aviation’s contribution to climate change may rise to as much as 5%. This isn’t insignificant and the harsh reality is its relative contribution to global warming is set to increase in coming years simply because other sectors of the economy will have an easier time decarbonising.

Addressing the CO2 emissions associated with flying requires an ability to measure, track and reduce the contribution of each factor. It’s a complex process and there’s…

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