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Aviation and Climate Change–The Continuing Challenge

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Abstract

The latest scientific framing of climate change emphasizes the importance of limiting cumulative emissions and the need to urgently cut CO2. International agreements on avoiding a 2 °C global temperature rise make clear the scale of CO2 reductions required across all sectors. Set against a context of urgent mitigation, the outlook for aviation's emissions is one of continued growth. Limited opportunities to further improve fuel efficiency, slow uptake of new innovations, coupled with anticipated rises in demand across continents collectively present a huge challenge to aviation in cutting emissions. While difficulties in decarbonizing aviation are recognized by industry and policymakers alike, the gap between what's necessary to avoid 2 °C and aviation's CO2 projections has profound implications. Biofuel is one of the few innovations that could play a significant role in closing the gap, but with low anticipated penetration before 2020 its contribution would have little impact over the desired timeframe. If the aviation sector does not urgently address rising emissions, there is an increasing risk that investment in new aircraft and infrastructure could lead to stranded assets. This leaves it facing an uncomfortable reality. Either the sector acts urgently on climate change and curtails rising demand, or it will be failing to take responsibility for a considerable and growing portion of climate change impacts.

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... For instance, the aviation sector's own emissions analysis foresees substantial growth in global demand this century (ICAO, 2016). While improvements in energy efficiency are possible, the aviation industry expects growth in demand to outstrip gains in intensities, with emissions continuing to rise (Bows- Larkin et al., 2016;ICAO, 2016;Murphy et al., 2018). The sector's prevalent emphasis is on offsetting and CDR, in particular through the UN's Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) (Sustainable Aviation, 2020). ...
... However, after the COVID-19 shock, the sector is unlikely to be able to afford large financial investments in technological mitigation options such as alternative fuels and electrification. In any case, it is relatively difficult for aviation to benefit from electric propulsion (a decarbonisation option technically available to the non-critical sectors), while biofuels and hydrogen are unlikely to scale up swiftly (Balcombe et al., 2019;Ball & Wietschel, 2009;Bows-Larkin et al., 2016;Drews et al., 2020;Gilbert et al., 2018;Hileman & Stratton, 2014;Searle & Malins, 2015). ...
... In IMAGE, the aviation sector's deep mitigation relies not only on efficiency improvements and alternative fuels, but also on slower growth in sectoral activity by 2050, particularly in the 1.5°C scenario (Supplementary Information Figure 1). One key reason is that deep decarbonisation in the aviation sector is likely feasible in the required timeframe only if air travel decreases in some markets, particularly given an expectation of growth in industrialising nations (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016). To achieve CO 2 intensity improvements envisioned by the low-carbon scenarios, development and deployment of low-CO 2 fuels, such as hydrogen and synthetic paraffinic kerosene (a type of biofuel), are needed (Flade et al., 2016;Rheaume & Lents, 2016) (level 3 in Figure 1). ...
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Limiting warming to well below 2°C requires rapid and complete decarbonisation of energy systems. We compare economy-wide modelling of 1.5°C and 2°C scenarios with sector-focused analyses of four critical sectors that are difficult to decarbonise: aviation, shipping, road freight transport, and industry. We develop and apply a novel framework to analyse and track mitigation progress in these sectors. We find that emission reductions in the 1.5°C and 2°C scenarios of the IMAGE model come from deep cuts in CO2 intensities and lower energy intensities, with minimal demand reductions in these sectors’ activity. We identify a range of additional measures and policy levers that are not explicitly captured in modelled scenarios but could contribute significant emission reductions. These are demand reduction options, and include less air travel (aviation), reduced transportation of fossil fuels (shipping), more locally produced goods combined with high load factors (road freight), and a shift to a circular economy (industry). We discuss the challenges of reducing demand both for economy-wide modelling and for policy. Based on our sectoral analysis framework, we suggest modelling improvements and policy recommendations, calling on the relevant UN agencies to start tracking mitigation progress through monitoring key elements of the framework (CO2 intensity, energy efficiency, and demand for sectoral activity, as well as the underlying drivers), as a matter of urgency. Key policy insights • Four critical sectors (aviation, shipping, road freight, and industry) cannot cut their CO2 emissions to zero rapidly with technological supply-side options alone. Without large-scale negative emissions, significant demand reductions for those sectors’ activities are needed to meet the 1.5–2°C goal. • Policy priorities include affordable alternatives to frequent air travel; smooth connectivity between low-carbon travel modes; speed reductions in shipping and reduced demand for transporting fossil fuels; distributed manufacturing and local storage; and tightening standards for material use and product longevity. • The COVID-19 crisis presents a unique opportunity to enact lasting CO2 emissions reductions, through switching from frequent air travel to other transport modes and online interactions. • Policies driving significant demand reductions for the critical sectors’ activities would reduce reliance on carbon removal technologies that are unavailable at scale.
... Among them, maritime transportation has the highest potential for carrying goods in high volume; and air transportation is the fastest mode of transportation, boosting the economic growth. Nonetheless, both pollute the environment due to consumption of high volumes of fossil fuels (IEA, 2009;Taghvaee and Hajiani, 2015;IMO, 2016;Larkin et al., 2016;IATA, 2014). Globally, transport energy use increased steadily at between 2 and 2.5 percent per year during 1971-2006. ...
... Maritime transportation is of the largest capacity for shipping commodities; and the air one is the most rapid mode. Both maritime and air transportation modes increase the flows of the international trade, and encourage the economic growth (Taghvaee and Hajiani, 2015;IMO, 2016;Larkin et al., 2016;IATA, 2014). ...
... Thus, transportation by ships and aircrafts has various effects on the economic growth and environmental pollution, specifically in the geo-strategic countries such as Iran, which connects the East to the West. In this regard, the environmental and economic effects of air and sea transportation are comparable with each other (Larkin et al., 2016;IATA, 2014). The purpose of this study is to compare the maritime transportation effects with air transportation ones on the environment and economy of Iran in order to seek the most efficient and the cleanest transportation mode. ...
Article
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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of maritime and air transportation on the environment and economy of Iran. The authors specify two dynamic models of the environmental pollution and the economic growth. Then, the authors estimate the environmental and economic elasticities of maritime and air transportation in short run and long run in Iran during 1978–2012. Design/methodology/approach The authors estimate the environmental and economic elasticities of maritime elasticities in short and long run, using simultaneous equations system. Findings The findings indicate that the short- and long-run environmental pollution elasticities of maritime transportation are higher than those of the air ones. In addition, the economic growth elasticities are greater in the air transportation compared to maritime one. As a result, the maritime transportation is more pollutant and less productive in Iran in comparison with the air transportation. Originality/value The policymakers are advised to improve the infrastructure of maritime transportation from both the environmental and economic point of views. Consequently, the air transportation is considered as a cleaner and more beneficial transportation mode in Iran, where geographical position limits the maritime transport as a widespread transportation mode.
... Transportation is the most significant driver of high tourism sector emissions (Scott, Peeters, & G€ ossling, 2010;Scott, Hall, & G€ ossling, 2016). Aviation emissions continue to rise in both absolute and relative terms (IPPC, 2014;Bows-Larkin, Mander, Traut, Anderson, & Wood, 2016). Global air passenger demand has, since 1970, consistently grown at 5-6% per annum (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016). ...
... Aviation emissions continue to rise in both absolute and relative terms (IPPC, 2014;Bows-Larkin, Mander, Traut, Anderson, & Wood, 2016). Global air passenger demand has, since 1970, consistently grown at 5-6% per annum (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016). This represents a doubling of global passenger revenue kilometres (RPK) approximately every 18 years; a long established trend that is set to continue. ...
... The International Civil Aviation Authority (ICAO) admits that without strong regulation aviation emissions are likely to grow by 300% by 2050 (EFTE, 2016). Business as usual represents a threat to our collective social and environmental wellbeing (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016;IPCC, 2014IPCC, , 2014. ...
Article
Academia is generally carbon intensive. Many academics are highly aeromobile to an extent that is now being framed as a form of ‘climate hypocrisy’. Technological advances are not enough to reduce the negative impacts of flying, and behaviour change is needed. As tourism academics our knowledge of the industry means that we have a greater than average responsibility to show leadership, and yet currently will remain responsible for a disproportionate amount of carbon emissions. At individual and societal levels, we morally disengage from the significance of our impacts and exonerate ourselves with worthy causes, we absolve ourselves from personal responsibility, we disregard the impacts at the destination, and we discredit those impinging on our “rights” to fly. It is time for academic institutions to take responsibility and for academics to show leadership in the sector by auditing our own impacts, reducing them within our current institutional constraints, and envisaging and experimenting with low carbon business models that make us proud of being part of a sustainable solution, and not just reporting how unsustainable everyone else’s behaviour is.
... However, due to the specific technical requirements and safety standards, the decarbonization of the sector presents unique challenges [1][2][3]. In addition, the demand for aviation is expected to grow in the future due to the expected income increase and the associated expansion in aviation activity [2,[4][5][6], especially in developing countries with currently low aviation demands. As of today, aviation represents the biggest share of the carbon footprint for specific high-income consumer groups [7], illustrating the sector's potential to dominate emissions in the future. ...
... This implies that a credible policy roadmap towards a decarbonized aviation industry should not only include the ramping up of green fuel production facilities via carbon pricing and carbon contracts for differences, fuelling standards, and massive investments towards fuel efficiency gains [2,5]. Pushing for SSP1-type demand trends, e.g. by disincentivicing frequent flying, support for regional tourism, support for virtual work meetings and conferences, etc seems very important when it comes to reducing mitigation challenges and thus ensuring a reasonable chance of reaching reduction goals in line with the Paris Agreement while also taking additional sustainability concerns into account. ...
Article
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Aviation has been identified as one of the crucial hard-to-abate sectors, as especially long-range aviation will continue to depend on liquid fuels for the foreseeable future. The sector also was one of the fastest-growing emitters of fossil CO2 emissions until 2019 but had experienced sharply reduced demand during the COVID-19 pandemic, making future demand outlooks more uncertain. While past studies have looked at the variation of future aviation demands due to variations in demographics, income levels, and pricing policies, an exploration of potentially more sustainable demand futures does not yet exist. Here we use an open-source model with a detailed representation of country-level aviation demand per international/domestic and business/leisure segments to analyze a range of scenarios based on a consistent and comprehensive interpretation of the qualitative narratives related to behavioural aspects as well as the socioeconomic data from different Shared Socioeconomic Pathways (SSPs). Our results show a potential stabilization of global aviation demand at roughly twice the 2019 level in an SSP1 scenario, a weakened growth for an SSP2 scenario, while an SSP5 scenario projects an aviation future virtually unaffected by the COVID-19 shock resulting in continued high growth rates. Further results show that without specific interventions that change the past demand growth patterns, the aviation sector could grow to levels very challenging to defossilize in a sustainable manner. Therefore, policies aiming at less frequent flying seem to be an important component of long-term decarbonisation strategies, and decisions on airport extensions should carefully assess the risk of stranded infrastructure.
... At least until the COVID-19 crisis, air travel emissions were predicted to triple between 2020 and 2050 (Gössling and Humpe, 2020;ICAO, 2019). This, in conjunction with the fact that aviation technology is particularly difficult to decarbonize (Peeters et al., 2016;Schäfer et al., 2019), makes the sector hard to fit into a zero-carbon budget (Allwood et al., 2019;CCC, 2019) unless demand management policies are implemented (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016;Higham et al., 2016;Lenzen et al., 2018). ...
... income, education) and air travel did not change much over time. Banister (2018) finds that participation in air travel was rather stable between 2002 and 2012 in Great Britain, while the distribution of trips remained highly skewed throughout the period, with a strong income effect on the propensity to fly. These studies suggest that the general increase in air travel participation was fairly evenly shared among different social groups, with little effect on overall air travel inequality. ...
Article
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Aviation is responsible for at least 3.5% of global warming, and demand is predicted to rise rapidly over the next few decades. To reverse this trend, air travel demand will need to be managed. An important question is: ‘who would be affected by air travel demand reduction policies’? The answer to that question largely depends on who is participating in air travel, and how unequally it is distributed. Existing analysis suggests that participation in air travel in the UK is highly unequal and driven by richer, highly educated and urban households. However, so far little is known about how these patterns of inequality have changed over time – has air travel participation increased among low income households, e.g. due to the rise of low-cost carriers and ‘normalisation’ of air travel as a social practice? Would these groups therefore now be more affected by flight taxes or frequent flyer levies? To address these questions, this paper examines trends in air travel inequality between 2001 and 2018 in the UK based on two representative surveys, providing the first micro-level analysis of air travel inequality over time for this country. We find that while disadvantaged groups have contributed to the expansion of air travel over the past two decades, they remain far less likely to be affected by air travel demand management policies because air travel inequality is still at a very high level. These findings challenge common discourses that present air travel as a widespread norm, and demand management policies as socially unfair.
... In 2016, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) forecasted 7.2 billion passengers travelling in 2035, reaching 16 billion by 2050. 1,2 In addition, the civil aviation industry's CO 2 emissions have grown consistently year-on-year since its emergence 3 and civil airplanes continue having a significant impact on noise pollution. To address this increasing environmental impact of civil aviation, the International Civil Aviation Organization's resolution aims to reduce CO 2 emissions by 50% by 2050, as illustrated by the Air Transportation Action Group in 2010. 2 Therefore, new generation commercial aircraft need to meet strict requirements regarding fuel consumption, emissions and noise constraints. ...
... Advances in engine design, optimized wing and body shapes, new materials, and new electric technologies have good potential to reduce fuel consumption. 3,4 However, this entails the implementation of more complex systems and a likewise complex integration of such systems across the whole design process. ...
Article
New technologies and complex systems are being developed in commercial aviation to meet strict requirements regarding fuel consumption, emissions and noise constraints. This motivates the development of multidisciplinary environments to efficiently manage the increasing complexity of the design process. Under the Clean Sky 2 initiative, the ModellIng and Simulation tools for Systems IntegratiON on Aircraft (MISSION) project aims to develop an integrated framework to holistically support the aircraft design, development and validation processes. Within the MISSION framework, this paper proposes a methodology to handle the integration between the aircraft level and the system level in the early phase of aircraft design. The methodology is demonstrated for the case of the Landing Gear System in the rejected take-off scenario.
... Even if the effects of aviation have a short-time effect and would diminish soon after stopping this technology, this does not seem to be a realistic scenario for the time frame of decisions made today with LCA and CF studies. Furthermore, one should consider the exponential growing importance of aviation today (Bows-Larkin et al. 2016). 3 The authors of one article investigating these developments summarize this with the headline con- clusion "the aviation industry's current projections of the sector's growth are incompatible with the international community's commitment to avoiding the 2 •C characterization of dan- gerous climate change" (Bows- Larkin et al. 2016). ...
... Furthermore, one should consider the exponential growing importance of aviation today (Bows-Larkin et al. 2016). 3 The authors of one article investigating these developments summarize this with the headline con- clusion "the aviation industry's current projections of the sector's growth are incompatible with the international community's commitment to avoiding the 2 •C characterization of dan- gerous climate change" (Bows- Larkin et al. 2016). ...
Article
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Purpose There are specific effects of emissions in high altitude, which lead to a higher contribution of aviation to the problem of climate change than just the emission of CO2 from burning fuels. The exact relevance is subject to scientific debate, but there is a consensus that aircrafts have an impact that is higher than just their contribution due to the direct CO2 emissions. The gap between this scientific knowledge on the one side and the missing of applicable GWP (global warming potential) factors for relevant emissions on the other side are an important shortcoming for life cycle assessment (LCA) or carbon footprint (CF) studies which aim to cover all relevant environmental impacts of the transport services investigated. Methods In this paper, the state of the art concerning the accounting for the specific effects of aircraft emissions in LCA and CF studies is discussed. Therefore, the relevant literature was evaluated, and practitioners were asked for the approaches used by them. Results and discussion Five major approaches are identified ranging from an RFI (radiative forcing index) factor of 1 (no factor at all) to a factor 2.7 for the total aircraft CO2 emissions. If only emissions in the higher atmosphere are considered, RFI factors between 1 and 8.5 are used or proposed in practice. Conclusions For the time being, an RFI of 2 on total aircraft CO2 (or 5.2 for the CO2 emissions in the higher atmosphere if using present models in ecoinvent) is recommended to be used in LCA and CF studies because it is based on the latest scientific publications; this basic literature cannot be misinterpreted. Furthermore, it is also recommended by some political institutions. These factors can be multiplied by the direct CO2 emissions of the aircraft to estimate the total global warming potential.
... ,13,[44][45][46][47] Although carbon-pricing and reductions in fuel demand are only two possible measures, the magnitude of the challenge we are facing is evident. The ability to alleviate this involves reducing GHG emissions, including upstream emissions, and reducing the costs of green fuels, e.g., by accelerating the scaling-up of fuel production and the learning curves, thereby pushing down costs earlier. ...
Article
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The shipping industry is a hard-to-abate sector in today's society. While past studies have looked at levels of carbon pricing, fuel savings, and the upscaling of green fuel availability separately, we combine these critical parameters for a green transition of the shipping industry to show what it takes to reach sectoral emissions reduction targets in line with the Paris Agreement. We utilize a least-cost optimization model drawing on data on, e.g., emissions with lifecycle elements and the costs of green fuel production.We find that reaching maritime reduction targets for a green transition requires high growth rates for green fuel availability, carbon pricing beyond 300EUR/tCO2eq, and at least 50% in fuel demand savings compared to today's demand projection for 2050. The results show the importance of immediate climate action if maritime emissions reduction goals are to be achieved.
... Participants highlighted climate change as the primary challenge in the long term, both from the necessity to decarbonise and from effects on business caused by negative public perception and industry image. It is widely recognised that aviation is one of the most challenging industries to decarbonise [107,108]. Flight requires significant energy, yet aircraft technology is limited by its weight and size constraints. Nevertheless, some were optimistic about aviation's ability to decarbonise, while the majority had some concerns. ...
Article
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Aviation is responsible for nearly 2.5% of the world’s anthropogenic carbon emissions. Despite a commitment to reduce these emissions, it is a challenging industry to decarbonise. Very little is known about the attitudes of those working in aviation towards climate change and whether they are motivated to support decarbonisation initiatives. This uncertainty highlights several threats to the industry, with cascading impact on the economy and inequality. To deal with these challenges, this study explores long-term strategies to support compatibility between the evolution of the aviation industry and climate constraints. Using surveys, in-depth interviews, and thematic analysis, this research investigates the views of professionals towards climate change, and the role that they perceive aviation plays. The results of the interviews allow the development of a system map composed of ten self-reinforcing and three balancing loops, highlighting ten leverage points to inform strategies for the industry to respond to threats. This research concludes that the aviation industry should encourage a new generation of sustainability-aware innovators to decarbonise aviation. It also concludes that collaboration both internationally and within the industry is essential, as is the need to encourage an open-minded approach to solution development. It also presents the modelling results in terms of the multilevel perspective technological transition framework and suggests ways forward for modelling using the risk–opportunity analysis.
... Studies acknowledge that the aviation sector is a significant contributor to climate change; it is also acknowledged that the current rate of air travel growth presents a real challenge to how fast the aerospace industry can become greener, being one of the hardest sectors to achieve greenhouse gas emission reductions [1][2][3]. One issue that limits the opportunities to further improve the fuel efficiency of aviation's is the slow uptake of innovations [4]. The latest European Aviation Environmental Report states that improving the environmental performance of the aviation sector requires effective coordination between stakeholders; this should build on existing measures and address the environmental challenges, thus ensuring the long-term success of the aviation sector [5]. ...
Article
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In this study, the jig-less end-effector system developed to assemble components of a full-scale multifunctional integrated composite thermoplastic lower fuselage section is tested and validated. To offset the environmental impact of higher volume of air transport, the aviation industry wants to design lighter and more environmentally friendly aircraft. To achieve this, there is a need to exploit novel materials and technologies. Advanced thermoplastic composites provide an excellent material option thanks to their weldability, low density, low overall production cost, improved fracture toughness and recyclability. However, to fully appreciate their capabilities and benefits, new manufacturing approaches and techniques are needed. Hence, projects such as TCTool, “innovative tooling, end-effector development and industrialisation for welding of thermoplastic components”, aim to develop innovative tooling and end-effector systems for the assembly of a multifunctional thermoplastic fuselage. This study presents the development, operation, and testing of the jig-less end-effector system used in the TCTool project for picking, placing, and temporary welding and fixing fuselage’s clips and stringers.
... Comprehensive research shows that despite anticipated efficiency innovations in airframes, engines, aerodynamics, and flight operations, the CO2 emissions are expected to grow [9], [10], due to the projected continued growth in air traffic [11], [12]. According to ICAO, global aviation emissions are projected to increase by 322% between 2006 and 2050 under optimistic assumptions for technology and operational improvements, and 347% under moderate assumptions for improvements [13]. ...
Article
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This paper addresses a way to implement greener aviation technologies, such as hybrid-electric propulsion, into the air transportation network to respond to the increasing environmental challenges posed by growing air traffic. New routes could be established between small airports to ensure better air connectivity in Europe while also connecting disadvantaged areas and relieve congestion at hub airports. Such routes could, for example, be served by micro feeder or 19-seat hybrid-electric aircraft, which produce low or no emissions, have lower operating costs, and are more applicable to environmental constraints. To achieve this and overcome the various challenges posed by the new hybrid-electric technologies, a new strategic roadmap for short-haul air transport is needed to optimize network services with small hybrid-electric aircraft.
... Given limited technological options for the decarbonisation of aviation (CCC, 2019;Peeters et al., 2016;Schäfer et al., 2019), future increases in air travel demand threaten to outstrip efficiency gains, as they have done to date (CAA, 2017;EEA, EASA and EUROCONTROL, 2019). This highlights the need for demand management policies (Bows-Larkin, 2014;Bows-Larkin et al., 2016;Dubois et al., 2011;Grote et al., 2014;Higham et al., 2016;Macintosh & Wallace, 2009;Transport & Environment, 2018), and for a better understanding of the determinants of air travel demand, including social, behavioural and lifestyle factors (EEA, 2014;Mattioli, 2016;Scott et al., 2016). ...
Article
While there is a saturation of car mileage per head in developed countries, international air travel has grown rapidly until 2020, making it crucial to better understand its drivers. An often-overlooked factor here is migration. Previous research suggests that individuals with migration background and/or from ethnic minorities tend to have more environmentally sustainable everyday travel patterns, due to lower car use. Yet there is evidence suggesting that their air travel-related emissions are higher than average, possibly due to visits to the home country and the trips required to maintain spatially distant social ties. However, migration background and social network attributes are typically not included in quantitative studies of air travel. In this paper, we analyse data from the 2011–2013 UKHLS survey, which provides information on annual car mileage and frequency of air travel for private purposes, allowing us to derive rough estimates of greenhouse gas emissions. We estimate regression models for these outcomes, including migration background, ethnicity, and social network predictors. We find that: i) first-generation migration background is associated with lower car mileage, but higher levels of air travel; ii) this effect is less pronounced or absent for less recently-arrived migrants and second- and third-generation migrants; iii) spatially dispersed social networks are positively associated with both air and car travel; iv) the association between migration background and air travel is partly accounted for by social network dispersion. We conclude by discussing implications for future research and air travel demand management policies.
... The environmentally destructive relationship between transport and tourism has been described as a roadblock to global climate change mitigation (Creutzig et al. 2015). Air travel produces a large and growing portion of the world's transport-related carbon emissions (Bows-Larkin et al. 2016;Lenzen et al. 2018). The total number of passengers carried on scheduled airline services in 2018 increased 6.4% on the previous year to 4.3 billion (ICAO 2019a). ...
Article
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Aviation remains a problematic sector of the global economy in times of climate emergency. Grounded in the ideology of reconfiguration, we adopt a system transitions perspective to address high emissions leisure travel. Our focus falls upon the marketing communications of airlines as a critical component in the prevailing socio-technical regime. Thematic analysis of the email marketing communications of selected airlines revealed three prominent tropes: adventure and discovery; privilege; and urgency. These communications bring air travel into the everyday lives of consumers and accelerate the turnover time of tourist consumption. Time is mobilised to create a sense of resource scarcity and urgency to consume; paradoxically in a situation characterised by oversupply. The COVID-19 pandemic has presented a unique opportunity for structural reform of the airline industry. Component substitution to address airline marketing is required as an important step towards overcoming consumer moral disengagement and reconfiguring the airline industry.
... If we consider all kinds of emissions, the contribution of the aviation industry reaches 4.9% (Lee et al., 2010;Grewe et al., 2017). Indeed, a reduction of emissions in the aviation industry is extremely difficult to achieve (Bows-Larkin et al, 2016;Andrés and Padilla, 2018). Many countries have taken measures to reduce aviation emissions; for example, aviation fuel tax (González and Hosoda, 2016;ICAO, 2016;Fukui and Miyoshi, 2017), ticket tax (Faber and Huigen, 2018) and biofuels (Kousoulidou and Lonza, 2016;Larsson et al., 2019). ...
Article
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This paper builds an inventory of intercity aviation emissions (CO2, NOx, SOx, CO, HC, and PM) and conducts a comprehensive international comparison, including the USA, Canada, Australia, Mainland China, Brazil, and India. We find that, first, the emissions per capita are significantly higher in developed countries than in developing countries. Second, the distribution of emissions in developed countries is disperse, while the emissions in developing countries are concentrated within a limited number of large cities. Third, the proportion of emissions from short-haul flights in China is much smaller than that in other countries. The development of high-speed rail in China may be one of main reasons for such a pattern. Finally, several policy implications are discussed.
... The growth in air travel has been accompanied by increasing concerns surrounding the associated environmental implications, seen as externalities (Dessens et al., 2014;Kilic et al., 2019). As such, the aviation sector is a major contributor to climate change, and the proportion attributed to aviation is set to increase because it is one of the hardest sectors to achieve greenhouse gas emission reductions (Andres and Padilla, 2018;Bows-Larkin et al., 2016;Schafer and Waitz, 2014). This is especially the case when compared to other forms of energy consumption, such as industrial and domestic use (Banister, 2019). ...
Article
While the aviation sector has long been referenced as contributing to the causes of climate change, the need for aviation to adapt to the consequences of climate change has not been as well researched or considered. The paper is a systematic quantitative literature review on climate change and aviation, which aims to explicate significant issues affecting aviation in a changing climate and to identify the aviation industry responses on climate change and adaptation. There are 46 references involved in the detailed assessment, selected according to variables such as methodology, paper outcomes and industry stakeholder. This emergent aviation and climate change adaptation literature could be broadened to cover more disciplines and approaches, an increased range of aviation stakeholders and go further beyond the larger airport case studies in developed countries. Further practical and policy developments are needed, particularly surrounding adaptation planning in aviation and the social justice implications of associated policies.
... Growth in air travel shows no signs of slowing, as the number of air travel passengers is projected to nearly double by 2036 (IATA, 2017). Meanwhile, technological developments in aviation are slow and unlikely to offset growth in demand, and neither governments nor the aviation industry has made significant progress in regulating the industry (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016). If the mitigation efforts of international aviation continue to underachieve compared to other sectors, the share of global carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions for this sector could grow to 22% of the global carbon budget (Cames et al., 2015). ...
Article
Lowering the growth in greenhouse gas emissions from air travel may be critical for avoiding dangerous levels of climate change, and yet some individuals perceive frequent air travel to be critical to their professional success. Using a sample of 705 travellers at the University of British Columbia, we investigated the influence of career stage, research productivity, field of expertise, and other variables on academic air travel and the associated emissions. This is the first time that research has evaluated the link between observed air travel and academic success. First, we compared air travel behaviour at different career stages and found that individuals at the start of their careers were responsible for fewer emissions from air travel than senior academics. Second, since career advancement may depend on an academic's ability to form partnerships and disseminate their research abroad, we investigated the relationship between air travel emissions and publicly available bibliometric measurements. We found no relationship between air travel emissions and metrics of academic productivity including hIa (h-index adjusted for academic age and discipline). There was, however, a relationship between emissions and salary that remains significant even when controlling for seniority. Finally, based on the premise that academics studying topics related to sustainability may have greater responsibility or motivation to reduce their emissions, we coded 165 researchers in our sample as either “Green” or “Not-green.” We found no significant difference between Green and Not-green academics in total air travel emissions, or in the types of emissions that might be easiest to avoid. Taken together, this preliminary evidence suggests that there may be opportunities, especially for academics who study topics related to climate and sustainability, to reduce their emissions from air travel while maintaining productive careers.
... Aviation is one of the fastest growing sources of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Over the last four decades, the number of passenger-kilometers in worldwide civil aviation increased at an average rate of 5% per year, while the corresponding carbon dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions have increased by 2% per year on average [1]. The emissions are increasing at a slower rate than the number of passenger-kilometers due to improvements in fuel efficiency. ...
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Relatively low travel costs and abundant opportunities for research funding in Switzerland and other developed countries allow researchers large amounts of international travel and collaborations, leading to a substantial carbon footprint. Increasing willingness to tackle this issue, in combination with the desire of many academic institutions to become carbon-neutral, calls for an in-depth understanding of academic air travel. In this study, we quantified and analyzed the carbon footprint of air travel by researchers from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) from 2014 to 2016, which is responsible for about one third of EPFL’s total CO2 emissions. We find that the air travel impact of individual researchers is highly unequally distributed, with 10% of the EPFL researchers causing almost 60% of the total emissions from EPFL air travel. The travel footprint increases drastically with researcher seniority, increasing 10-fold from PhD students to professors. We found that simple measures such as restricting to economy class, replacing short trips by train and avoiding layovers already have the potential to reduce emissions by 36%. These findings can help academic institutions to implement travel policies which can mitigate the climate impact of their air travel.
... It can increase the level of CO2 emissions; and it might heighten the level of economic growth. The environmental and economic effects of air transportation can be compared with the corresponding effects of sea transportation [3,4]. ...
... Timetables have been set for later dates with low targets compared to the urgency of climate change (see ICAO n.d.). Industry goals to gradually bring down energy consumption and green its fuel mix-rather than revolutionize it-speak to the sector's huge financial interests but hardly resonate neither with the urgent nature of climate change nor with state mandates to enforce more ambitious energy and climate policies (Larkin et al. 2016). ...
Chapter
This chapter sets out a description of a steady-state energy policy. It begins with a close look at the implications of a steady-state monetary, trade, tax, and investment policy for energy policy. Drawing from developments in the current energy transition (e.g. proliferation of micro-generation, deployment of smart grids, and the emergence of prosumers markets), the analysis presents hard and soft pathways, and singles out pitfalls derived from the transition’s embeddedness in growth-driven policy frameworks. The discussion subsequently places these processes within a steady-state policy framework and shows how they can up-scale the transformation of energy systems. The discussion extends to policy prescriptions to maximize energy efficiency, essentially calling for a switch from a supply-side to a demand-side paradigm.
... The IPCC 5th Assessment Report (AR5) notes that addressing transport emissions is critical to the 2°C climate imperative. Aviation emissions continue to increase in both absolute and relative terms 2 as the aviation sector remains on a trajectory of unrestrained growth (Bows-Larkin et al., 2016). ...
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Growing acceptance and concern about anthropogenic climate change is beginning to influence tourists’ travel practices, with a hardening of attitudes towards long-haul aviation now evident in a number of key European outbound tourism markets. This raises timely questions as to whether or not the need for urgent climate action is influencing air travel decisions in other markets. This paper investigates climate concerns and air travel practices in the Australian outbound tourism market. Specifically, we set out to examine whether or not climate concerns may be influencing Australian non-frequent travellers to consider distance as a factor in their air travel destination decision-making, with a particular focus on New Zealand as a destination. Reflecting previous studies, the results indicate widespread concern about climate change combined with an unwillingness to change established air travel behaviours. However, in contrast to previous research, participants in this study did not show an overt and passive ‘attitude-behaviour gap’ based on denial and guilt, but a more conscious reasoning that led to scepticism towards their individual ability to enact change while operating in a system that is not really geared to make this change possible.
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In this qualitative longitudinal case study, Singapore Airlines carbon footprint is examined for the period covering the company's 2010/11 to 2021/22 financial years. The study's qualitative data was examined by document analysis. The case study found that Singapore Airline's carbon footprint is comprised of its Scope 1 direct emissions that are produced from the provision of its passenger and air cargo services together with the carbon dioxide (CO2) emission produced from the ground service equipment and vehicles used in its ground operations. The carbon footprint also includes its Scope 2 indirect emissions, which are produced from the airline's consumption of electricity at its Singapore hub. Singapore Airlines has implemented a very comprehensive environmental policy and has pledged to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The largest source of carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions is from the airline's passenger services. Singapore Airlines has implemented extensive carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions reduction measures that have focused on the reduction in aircraft weight, and highly efficient fuel management procedures. Other key carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions reduction measures include improved operational procedures, the optimization of air space management in collaboration with key air traffic control agencies, the use of cleaner energy vehicles, an extensive range of energy efficiency measures in its buildings and facilities, the use of sustainable aviation fuels, and the use of more energy efficient ground power sources. In addition, the acquisition and operation of the state-of-the art, next generation aircraft, such as the Airbus A350-900XWB and the Boeing 787-10 have helped the airline to mitigate its carbon footprint.
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Recent years have seen an increased interest in demand-side mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions. Despite the oftentimes spatial nature of emissions research, links to social factors and infrastructure are often not analysed geographically. To reach substantial and lasting emission reductions without further disadvantaging vulnerable populations, the design of effective mitigation policies on the local level requires considerations of spatial and social inequalities as well as the context of well-being. Consequently, we explore spatial variations in the links between consumption-based transport emissions with infrastructural factors, such as workplace distance and public transport density, and with risk-factors of transport poverty, including income, age, ethnicity, mobility constraints in London. We find that linear models report significant spatial autocorrelation at p ≤ 0.01 in their model residuals, indicating spatial dependency. Using geographically weighted regression models improves model fits by an adjusted R2 value of 9–70% compared to linear models. Here, modelling flight emissions generally sees the lowest improvements, while those models modelling emissions from cars and vans see the highest improvements in model fit. We conclude that using geographically weighted regression to assess the links between social factors and emissions offers insights which global, linear models overlook. Moreover, this type of analysis enables an assessment of where, spatially, different types of policy interventions may be most effective in reducing not only emissions, but transport poverty risks. Patterns of spatial heterogeneity and policy implications of this research are discussed.
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Policies to reduce air travel demand, including in the tourism sector, are urgently required as air travel’s climate impact keeps growing while low-carbon aviation remains a distant perspective. Policy options include flat rate taxes per flight, taxes on flight miles or emissions, or frequent flyer levies, yet little is known about how their distributional impacts compare. This paper examines the distributional effects of various air travel tax options for the UK, informed by an analysis of the distribution of (frequent) flights and associated emissions over income and other social characteristics. We find that ‘frequent flights’ are even more unequally distributed than all flights and that all taxes on air travel are distributionally neutral or progressive. The most progressive option is a ‘frequent air miles tax’ based on both the number of flights and emissions. At the same time, some social groups like recent migrants are relatively likely to be ‘frequent flyers’ even on lower incomes. Overall however, our results show that taxing air travel is far less regressive than taxing home energy or motor fuels. Taxes on air travel, while often portrayed as unfair in public discourses, therefore raise fewer fairness concerns than other types of carbon taxes.
Chapter
The first edited collection to examine how we can transition to a future of low carbon methods of travel and mobility.
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This study investigates the short‐run impact of the flight departure tax introduced in Germany and Austria in 2011 on the number of flight passengers. The analysis covers 310 airports in 30 European countries for the period 2008–2016. Dynamic panel difference‐in‐differences estimations show that the flight tax reduces the number of passengers by 9% in the year of introduction and 5% in the subsequent year. However, separate estimations for airports predominantly frequented by low‐cost airlines reveal that the reduction of the number of passengers is mainly driven by these airports, whereas the regular hubs are not affected.
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This paper explores the attitude–behaviour gap from an identity perspective in order to better understand why tourists act sustainably at “home” but not when “away”. The majority of tourism-related CO2 emissions stems from transport. Behavioural change is a possible way to reduce those emissions. However, research indicates that instigating behavioural change within tourism is problematic, because of the attitude–behaviour gap. Studies suggest that understanding the role of identity and tourism mobility could explain this gap; this paper researches that idea, using a narrative approach to explore the travel life histories of 24 participants, with a second interview to examine how interviewees viewed their tourism activity in the light of environmental debates and concerns. Data were analysed using thematic and narrative-based dialogic/performance approaches. The paper reveals how a need for personal identity can influence travel behaviour and that identity plays a significant role in travel decisions, sometimes overriding cost and environmental issues. The power of social identity is explored, noting increasingly powerful global VFR networks, along with the search for future selves, the need for personal differentiation and issues of multiple identities. Suggestions are made for ways to use identity research into policies seeking to achieve behavioural change.
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All sectors face decarbonization for a 2C temperature increase to be avoided. Nevertheless, meaningful policy measures that address rising CO2 from international aviation and shipping remain woefully inadequate. Treated with a similar approach within the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), they are often debated as if facing comparable challenges, and even influence each others’ mitigation policies. Yet their strengths and weaknesses have important distinctions. This article sheds light on these differences so that they can be built upon to improve the quality of debate and ensuing policy development. The article quantifies ‘2C’ pathways for these sectors, highlighting the need for mitigation measures to be urgently accelerated. It reviews recent developments, drawing attention to one example where a change in aviation mitigation policy had a direct impact on measures to cut CO2 from shipping. Finally, the article contrasts opportunities and barriers towards mitigation. The article concludes that there is a portfolio of opportunities for short- to medium-term decarbonization for shipping, but its complexity is its greatest barrier to change. In contrast, the more simply structured aviation sector is pinning too much hope on emissions trading to deliver CO2 cuts in line with 2C. Instead, the solution remains controversial and unpopular – avoiding 2C requires demand management.
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Accurate assessment of anthropogenic carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and their redistribution among the atmosphere, ocean, and terrestrial biosphere is important to better understand the global carbon cycle, support the development of climate policies, and project future climate change. Here we describe datasets and a methodology to quantify all major components of the global carbon budget, including their uncertainties, based on the combination of a range of data, algorithms, statistics and model estimates and their interpretation by a broad scientific community. We discuss changes compared to previous estimates, consistency within and among components, alongside methodology and data limitations. CO2 emissions from fossil fuel combustion and cement production (EFF) are based on energy statistics and cement production data, respectively, while emissions from Land-Use Change (ELUC), mainly deforestation, are based on combined evidence from land-cover change data, fire activity associated with deforestation, and models. The global atmospheric CO2 concentration is measured directly and its rate of growth (GATM) is computed from the annual changes in concentration. The mean ocean CO2 sink (SOCEAN) is based on observations from the 1990s, while the annual anomalies and trends are estimated with ocean models. The variability in SOCEAN is evaluated with data products based on surveys of ocean CO2 measurements. The global residual terrestrial CO2 sink (SLAND) is estimated by the difference of the other terms of the global carbon budget and compared to results of independent Dynamic Global Vegetation Models forced by observed climate, CO2 and land cover change (some including nitrogen-carbon interactions). We compare the variability and mean land and ocean fluxes to estimates from three atmospheric inverse methods for three broad latitude bands. All uncertainties are reported as ± 1σ, reflecting the current capacity to characterise the annual estimates of each component of the global carbon budget. For the last decade available (2004-2013), EFF was 8.9 ± 0.4 GtC yr-1, ELUC 0.9 ± 0.5 GtC yr-1, GATM 4.3 ± 0.1 GtC yr-1, SOCEAN 2.6 ± 0.5 GtC yr-1, and SLAND 2.9 ± 0.8 GtC yr-1. For year 2013 alone, EFF grew to 9.9 ± 0.5 GtC yr-1, 2.3 % above 2012, contining the growth trend in these emissions, ELUC was 0.9 ± 0.5 GtC yr-1, GATM was 5.4 ± 0.2 GtC yr-1, SOCEAN was 2.9 ± 0.5 GtC yr-1 and SLAND was 2.5 ± 0.9 GtC yr-1. GATM was high in 2013 reflecting a steady increase in EFF and smaller and opposite changes between SOCEAN and SLAND compared to the past decade (2004-2013). The global atmospheric CO2 concentration reached 395.31 ± 0.10 ppm averaged over 2013. We estimate that EFF will increase by 2.5% (1.3-3.5%) to 10.1 ± 0.5 GtC in 2014 (37.0 ± 1.9 GtCO2 yr-1), 65% above emissions in 1990, based on projections of World Gross Domestic Product and recent changes in the carbon intensity of the economy. With this projection, cumulative emissions of CO2 will reach about 545 ± 55 GtC (2000 ± 200 GtCO2) for 1870-2014, about 75% from EFF and 25% from ELUC. This paper documents changes in the methods and datasets used in this new carbon budget compared with previous publications of this living dataset (Le Quéré et al., 2013; Le Quéré et al., 2014). All observations presented here can be downloaded from the Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center (doi: 10.3334/CDIAC/GCP_2014).
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Realizing a significant reduction of enroute emissions with respect to greenhouse gases is one major challenge in aircraft design today. Conventional kerosene propulsion systems are going to reach their efficiency limits in near future and it will be very ambitious to fulfill the requirements for future aircraft transportation using conventional engines. Consequently, new approaches for propulsion system design and integration are required to further improve aircraft efficiency through synergy effects. In this paper, a universally electric, short-haul, medium-capacity aircraft utilizing electric motors and battery for motive power is used as datum. The focus lies on the impact of a distributed propulsion system on the aircraft design and flight performance and will not discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the used reference aircraft configuration. Initial studies were performed identifying that the critical design cases for electric motor sizing are the one-engine-inoperative (OEI) flight segments, i.e., the climb gradients required at take-off and landing as well as field length requirements. By increasing the number of installed engines (i.e., motor–fan combinations) the OEI performance requirements may be satisfied with a reduced amount of installed motor and battery system power. An integrated aircraft performance analysis is conducted to estimate the possible net benefit in terms of increased aircraft range when increasing the number of installed engines. Aerodynamic efficiency degradation is considered as well as weight impacts due to electric motor scaling and necessary system architecture modifications. The analysis shows that a 6 % increase in aircraft design range can be achieved when going from 2 to 4 installed propulsive devices.
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The latest carbon dioxide emissions continue to track the high end of emission scenarios, making it even less likely global warming will stay below 2 °C. A shift to a 2 °C pathway requires immediate significant and sustained global mitigation, with a probable reliance on net negative emissions in the longer term.
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'Are you going to tell me off for flying?' This question was asked three times by a lady in South Manchester, England, when we asked her to participate in our qualitative in-home study on flying. She asked it once when we approached her in the street to ask if we may interview her. She asked again when we phoned to confirm the time and address of the interview, and she asked it a third time while serving tea and biscuits at the beginning of the interview. Needless to say we had given absolutely no indication that the interview would pass 'judgment' on her flying activities. The lady had undertaken six return trips by air for leisure in the previous year, and in the final section of the interview commented 'I will have a conscience, but I won't not fly to Miami…'. As this one example shows, the frequent flying/environmental impact question is currently a hot topic. It brings forth a cocktail of rich unprompted discussion and a mixed bag of responses, it has become emotionally charged and polemic. Accounts and justifications concerning frequent flying range from surprise that a taken-for-granted everyday activity which until very recently had been considered a culturally desirable thing to do, has suddenly become frowned upon; to a sense of almost guilty pleasure, apology and, at its extremes, defiance. What the significance and explanation for this might be in sociological terms is the focus of this paper. The answers are important, in particular for policy stakeholders seeking to curb consumption behaviours as one of a portfolio of emissions reduction strategies. It is to the policy audience that this paper primarily speaks. It also provides a quite different - out of the box - insight and contribution to the aviation and emissions debate, which complements the more 'supply side' technology and research and development focused papers which dominate the aviation and emissions-reduction literature currently.
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Policy Update The UK Climate Change Act 2008 requires the UK Government to decide by the end of 2012 whether and how it will include international aviation emissions in the Act's emission reduction framework. The decision will follow two public consultations and will be announced within the context of a double-dip recession and assertions that expanding aviation capacity will reinvigorate an ailing economy [1,2]. The additional GHG emissions from expansion, it is argued, will be minimized by the use of 'environmentally friendly planes' incentivized through aviation's recent inclusion in the EU-ETS; any residual emissions would be offset through traded permits [101]. This article highlights how, given the difficulties of carrying out robust analysis on the economics around aviation, the presumption that further aviation growth is good for the economy is at best premature and may yet prove dangerously misleading. As it stands, the debate is ongoing as to whether investment in aviation generates returns over and above similar investment levels elsewhere in the UK economy. Any resilient decision on investment must heed the carbon intensity of the activity in generating such returns and the likely upwards trajectory of a carbon price. On climate change and emissions the conclusion is unequivocal. Regardless of the EU-ETS, any level of medium-term aviation growth is incompatible with the carbon budgets accompanying the UK's commitments under both the Copenhagen Accord and the Cancun Agreement. Even with optimistic projections of improved aircraft efficiency, it is incumbent on the industry to substantially reduce its emissions over the coming two decades if the UK is not to renege on its climate change commitments. Given the high profile and stridency of claims by Yeo and Darling, amongst many others, for the urgent expansion of aviation capacity [101–103], how do their arguments stand up to the evidence on the role of aviation in climate change and economic reform? 'Environmentally friendly planes' The proposition that environmentally friendly planes will play a pivotal role in delivering a low-carbon aviation industry is worthy of particular focus, as it suggests concern over growth in the sector is misplaced. However, despite the rhetoric, there are significant challenges and inherent obstacles in relying on technology to mitigate the GHG emissions from aircraft [3,4]. Take fuel as an example; there are few fuels that are sufficiently energy dense, and hence light enough, for flight. With those that may be viable, important uncertainties remain over the climate consequences of their combustion at high altitudes. Turning to the airframe and engine design, decades of research, development and deployment leave little opportunity for future efficiency gains, with current estimates of efficiency improvements between 0.8 and 1.5% per annum, and this would still demand substantial and ongoing R&D [5]. This absence of low emission technology is exacerbated by the fast growth that has been observed from the sector in the last 20 years, continuously outpacing technological and operational efficiency improvements [3]. Future projections demonstrate a continuation of this trend [6]. Coupling these challenges with the long lifetime of both aircraft
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Solar syngas production from H2O and CO2 is experimentally investigated using a two-step thermochemical cycle based on cerium oxideredox reactions. A solar cavity-receiver containing porous ceria felt is directly exposed to concentrated thermal radiation at a mean solar concentration ratio of 2865 suns. In the first endothermic step at 1800 K, ceria is thermally reduced to an oxygen deficient state. In the second exothermic step at 1100 K, syngas is produced by re-oxidizing ceria with a gas mixture of H2O and CO2. The syngas composition is experimentally determined as a function of the molar co-feeding ratio H2O:CO2 in the range of 0.8 to 7.7, yielding syngas with H2:CO molar ratios from 0.25 to 2.34. Ten consecutive H2O/CO2-splitting cycles performed over an 8 hour solar experimental run are presented.
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Over the past decades air travel has been the fastest growing mode in many countries, including the UK. Because of this, and because of the requirements of air travel on the local transportation network and its more general environmental impacts, forecasts of the future demand for air travel and knowledge of its determining factors are essential components in the formation of transportation policy. The objectives of this paper are to analyse the demand for air travel to and from the UK during the past decade and to investigate the factors determining its development. The factors considered are income, airfares, foreign trade, exchange rates and domestic price levels. Pooled time-series cross-section data are used to estimate dynamic econometric models for air travel by British residents to 20 OECD countries and for residents of these 20 countries to the UK. In each case, the leisure and business markets are treated separately. The estimated long-run income (trade) elasticities are in excess of 1 for all markets. Airfares are also shown to be an important determinant of demand, with long-run elasticities on the order of -0.3 to -0.6. The growth in income and trade has had the greatest impact on air travel over the period, particularly for the business market, and especially for travel to the UK. Fares have been most important for the UK leisure market, with the fare reductions explaining around 40% of the increase in air travel.
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The Copenhagen Accord reiterates the international community's commitment to 'hold the increase in global temperature below 2 degrees Celsius'. Yet its preferred focus on global emission peak dates and longer-term reduction targets, without recourse to cumulative emission budgets, belies seriously the scale and scope of mitigation necessary to meet such a commitment. Moreover, the pivotal importance of emissions from non-Annex 1 nations in shaping available space for Annex 1 emission pathways received, and continues to receive, little attention. Building on previous studies, this paper uses a cumulative emissions framing, broken down to Annex 1 and non-Annex 1 nations, to understand the implications of rapid emission growth in nations such as China and India, for mitigation rates elsewhere. The analysis suggests that despite high-level statements to the contrary, there is now little to no chance of maintaining the global mean surface temperature at or below 2°C. Moreover, the impacts associated with 2°C have been revised upwards, sufficiently so that 2°C now more appropriately represents the threshold between 'dangerous' and 'extremely dangerous' climate change. Ultimately, the science of climate change allied with the emission scenarios for Annex 1 and non-Annex 1 nations suggests a radically different framing of the mitigation and adaptation challenge from that accompanying many other analyses, particularly those directly informing policy.
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It is now increasingly recognized that aviation is an important driver of individual and global mobility. Growth in mobility is not evenly distributed, however: recent studies indicate that a relatively small, highly mobile part of society may account for a large share of the total distances travelled. In reviewing one of the processes that may lead to growth in individual aeromobility, the paper focuses on frequent flyer programmes (FFPs) as an institutionalized framework for high mobility, detailing how these programmes reward and thus increase interest in aeromobility. Results are linked to a number of observations regarding the interrelationship of high mobility and social status, and substantiated by a survey of FFP members and their perspectives on benefits provided by such programmes. It is argued that FFPs reward high mobility and discursively interlink frequent flying with social status, which is an important element in the development of mobility patterns which shape and create the social structures that ‘necessitate’ air travel.
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Advances in the science and observation of climate change are providing a clearer understanding of the inherent variability of Earth's climate system and its likely response to human and natural influences. The implications of climate change for the environment and society will depend not only on the response of the Earth system to changes in radiative forcings, but also on how humankind responds through changes in technology, economies, lifestyle and policy. Extensive uncertainties exist in future forcings of and responses to climate change, necessitating the use of scenarios of the future to explore the potential consequences of different response options. To date, such scenarios have not adequately examined crucial possibilities, such as climate change mitigation and adaptation, and have relied on research processes that slowed the exchange of information among physical, biological and social scientists. Here we describe a new process for creating plausible scenarios to investigate some of the most challenging and important questions about climate change confronting the global community.
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Emissions from airplanes and their potential global effects on the atmosphere have become the subject of intensive study by scientists, and are now drawing the interest of governments. Global fuel consumption has risen much faster for aviation than for other energy-use sectors. Concerns have focused on the contribution of nitrogen oxides (NOx), carbon dioxide (C02), water vapor (H20) and other engine effluents to the buildup of the atmosphere's greenhouse effect. Future aircraft emissions also may affect the stratosphere's ozone layer. This report describes an effort to develop long-term scenarios for emissions from aviation in order to provide a basis for assessing their potential environmental impact throughout the 21st century. Carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides from the current and projected subsonic aircraft fleets are the main focus of this study. The scenarios in this report were produced by a model that builds on technological and operational assumptions made by industry and government for the period through 2015. It is important to state from the outset what this report is not about. It is not a detailed examination of the environmental effects of aviation. It is not an assessment of the potential for technological or operational changes that could reduce emissions from expected levels. It does not set forth a comprehensive and detailed policy prescription for limiting emissions from aviation. This report does not analyze the potential emissions of a vastly expanded fleet of supersonic aircraft, such as the proposed High-Speed Civil Transport (HSCT), although its possible environmental impacts are discussed briefly.
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Each year greenhouse gas emissions remain high the climate mitigation and adaptation challenges grow. The economic downturn was already in train in 2008, yet concentrations of CO 2 increased unabated. Without concerted effort across all sectors there will be little chance of avoiding ‘dangerous climate change’ and the aviation sector has a clear role to play. Current and forthcoming technologies, operational practices and behavioural change offer widespread opportunities for other sectors to mitigate their CO 2 emissions in absolute terms, but as they do so, aviation will become an increasingly important player. By comparing a range of global cross-sector emission scenarios with existing aviation projections, this paper illustrates the importance of understanding the future context with regard to other sectors when assessing the aviation industry’s potential impact. Given growth projections for aviation and the relatively slow pace of technological change, aviation’s proportion of 2050 global CO 2 emissions is low only in those global cross-sector emission scenarios where there is a high probability of ‘dangerous climate change’. For a ‘reasonable’ (>50%) chance of avoiding ‘dangerous climate change’, the most technologically radical scenarios for aviation make up 15% of global CO 2 in 2050 and conventional scenarios exceed the carbon budget entirely. Only by recognising that aviation’s currently projected emissions are incompatible with avoiding ‘dangerous climate change’ can the industry fully grasp the challenge of accelerating innovation and managing demand to deliver a more sustainable route to 2050 and beyond.
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The negative external impacts of aviation are currently under unprecedented scrutiny. In response, a number of studies into future prospects for improvement have recently been carried out. This paper reviews these studies and discusses their combined implications for emissions of carbon dioxide, oxides of nitrogen, and noise. The results are also compared with targets for emissions reduction proposed by ACARE and NASA. It is concluded that significant future gains are achievable, but not to the extent implied by the ACARE and NASA targets, which represent an unrealistically optimistic view of technological potential over the next 20–40 years. The focus on technological advance also deflects attention from the substantial benefits available from combining present-day technology with behavioural change. Finally, difficult policy decisions will be necessary; the greatest benefits are associated with technological developments that will require major, and long-term, investment for their realisation, and there will be increasing conflict between environmental and noise goals.
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Concerns regarding the environmental and economic sustainability of petroleum based transportation fuels, including jet fuel, are driving interest into alternative fuels. The development of viable alternatives could provide benefits in terms of energy diversity thus reducing dependence on any given nation for our energy needs. This manuscript examines the drivers for alternative fuels in the light of the needs of aviation and it provides criteria wherein potential alternative jet fuels can be compared. A wide range of transportation fuels was qualitatively examined using these criteria. Because of concerns regarding their safe use and the energy efficiency loss that would be inherent in their use, alcohols and biodiesel are better suited for ground transportation. Cryogenic fuels are not feasible in the near term because of the large existing aircraft and airport infrastructure that is incompatible with these fuels. Synthetic fuels offer aviation with a wide range of potential feedstocks that could augment or potentially replace petroleum, but concerns regarding the economic cost of production and the current lack of feedstock availability limits their near term availability to aviation.
Conference Paper
http://www.supergen-bioenergy.net/home/News/2013/09/16/greenhouse%20gas%20report
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A central argument of much contemporary literature is that the advent of digital and mobile technologies creates new kinds of mobile lives, new socialities and new ways of relating to the self and others. In this paper I specifically examine how mobile lives unfold through social networks, facilitating the forming and reforming of connections people have with others, near and distant. I argue that movement itself is not so significant. Its importance rather stems from how it enables people to be connected with each other, to meet and to remeet over time and across space. Movement makes connections. These connections form patterns or networks, which many commentators see as the critical feature of contemporary life. Much travel thus involves making new connections and extending one’s network or sustaining one’s existing networks.
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Purpose – To examine the relationship between aviation and climate change, and the international dimensions of air transport. Methodology/approach – A review of aviation's impacts on the global climate, mitigation strategies to reduce this impact, and the possible consequences of climate change for commercial aviation. Findings – Although a range of mitigation measures have been developed and implemented to reduce aircraft emissions in the short term, with some environmental benefit, there is a real need for the aviation sector to identify the possible impacts of climate change on air travel operations, both to aircraft in flight and to operations at airports. A further challenge will be to devise adaptation plans that will address the vulnerabilities and thus ensure safe aviation-related operations. Social implications – The climate change impacts of aviation will adversely affect society. In addition, some individuals may have to reduce or stop flying as a result of increased taxes and legislation implemented in response to climate change. Originality/value of paper – There is a novel focus on the adaptation challenges for the aviation industry in response to climate change.
Book
It is generally accepted - the US administration excepted - that the emissions reduction targets agreed in the Kyoto Protocol are only the beginning of what needs to be achieved in international climate negotiations. While studies suggest that major emission reductions by industrialized countries can be achieved at low economic cost, both these and early reductions by developing countries are inevitably a major political challenge. This book focuses on European policy toward climate change, specifically its ramifications for the aviation industry. With air travel predicted to grow enormously in the coming years, the issue of climate change is hugely topical for this important industry. Accessible to students, academics and practioners, this book is useful reading for all those with an interest in climate change, the aviation industry, or both. © 2009 Alice Bows, Kevin Anderson and Paul Upham. All rights reserved.
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Tourism contributes to climate change through energy use and greenhouse gas emissions, both largely generated by transport. One means to reduce the volume of greenhouse gases generated by tourists is to encourage a modal shift to transport with lower emissions such as trains and buses. This study considered the factors influencing metropolitan and regional residents in their selection of tourism transport mode. The study found that time, cost, and convenience were the main lifestyle and experience factors influencing their choice. The implications of these findings are discussed in relation to the need to adapt behavior in the light of climate change.
Article
Nowadays, new technologies and breakthroughs in the fields of energy efficiency, alternative fuels and added-value electronics are leading to improved, more environmentally sustainable and green thinking applications. Due to the forecasted rapid increase of volume of air traffic, future aircraft generations have to face enhanced requirements concerning productivity, environmental compatibility and higher operational availability, thus effecting technical, operational and economical aspects of in-flight and on-ground power generation systems, even if air transport is responsible for only about 2% of all anthropogenic CO2 emissions. The trend in new aircraft development is toward ‘‘more electric’’ architectures which is characterized by a higher proportion of electrical systems substituting hydraulically or pneumatically driven components, and, as a result, increasing the amount of electrical power. Fuel cell systems in this context represent a promising solution regarding the enhancement of the energy efficiency for both cruise and ground operations. For several years the Institute of Technical Thermodynamics of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum f€ur Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR) in Stuttgart and Hamburg has developed fuel cell systems for aircraft applications. The activities of DLR focus on: identification of fuel cell applications in aircraft in which the properties of fuel cell systems, namely high electric efficiency, low emissions and silent operation, are capitalized for the aircraft application; design and modeling of possible and advantageous system designs; theoretical and experimental investigations regarding specific aircraft relevant operating conditions; qualification of airworthy fuel cell systems; set up and full scale testing of fuel cell systems for application in research aircraft. In cooperation with Airbus, several fuel cell applications within the aircraft for both ground and cruise operation have been identified. As a consequence, fuel cell systems capable of supporting or even replacing existing systems have been derived. In this context, the provision of inert gas for the jet fuel (kerosene) tank and electrical cabin power supply, including water regeneration, represent the most promising application fields. This paper will present the state of development and the evolution discussing the following points: modeling of different system architectures and evaluation of promising fuel cell systems; experimental evaluation of fuel cell systems under relevant conditions (low pressure, vibrations, reformate operation, etc.); fuel cell test in DLR’s research aircraft ATRA (A320) including the test of an emergency system based on hydrogen and oxygen with 20 kW of electrical power. The fuel cell system was integrated into an A320 aircraft and tested up to a flight altitude of 25 000 feet under several acceleration and inclination conditions; fuel cell tests in Antares-H2—DLR’s new flying test bed.
Article
Aviation emissions contribute to the radiative forcing (RF) of climate. Of importance are emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2), nitrogen oxides (NOx), aerosols and their precursors (soot and sulphate), and increased cloudiness in the form of persistent linear contrails and induced-cirrus cloudiness. The recent Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) quantified aviation’s RF contribution for 2005 based upon 2000 operations data. Aviation has grown strongly over the past years, despite world-changing events in the early 2000s; the average annual passenger traffic growth rate was 5.3% yr-1 between 2000 and 2007, resulting in an increase of passenger traffic of 38%. Presented here are updated values of aviation RF for 2005 based upon new operations data that show an increase in traffic of 22.5%, fuel use of 8.4% and total aviation RF of 14% (excluding induced-cirrus enhancement) over the period 2000–2005. The lack of physical process models and adequate observational data for aviationinduced cirrus effects limit confidence in quantifying their RF contribution. Total aviation RF (excluding induced cirrus) in 2005 was ~55mW m-2 (23–87mW m-2, 90% likelihood range), whichwas 3.5% (range 1.3–10%, 90% likelihood range) of total anthropogenic forcing. Including estimates for aviation-induced cirrus RF increases the total aviation RF in 2005–78 mW m-2 (38–139 mW m-2, 90% likelihood range), which represents 4.9% of total anthropogenic forcing (2–14%, 90% likelihood range). Future scenarios of aviation emissions for 2050 that are consistent with IPCC SRES A1 and B2 scenario assumptions have been presented that show an increase of fuel usage by factors of 2.7–3.9 over 2000. Simplified calculations of total aviation RF in 2050 indicate increases by factors of 3.0–4.0 over the 2000 value, representing 4–4.7% of total RF (excluding induced cirrus). An examination of a range of future technological options shows that substantive reductions in aviation fuel usage are possible only with the introduction of radical technologies. Incorporation of aviation into an emissions trading system offers the potential for overall (i.e., beyond the aviation sector) CO2 emissions reductions. Proposals exist for introduction of such a system at a European level, but no agreement has been reached at a global level.
Article
The European Community, motivated by the rapid growth of the aviation industry and related impacts on climate change, has decided to include aviation in the European Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS). Mitigation policies such as the EU ETS are considered to be necessary in order to change travel behaviour and induce operational and technological changes in the aviation industry that will result in lower environmental impacts. This paper reviews the available impact assessments of the proposed emissions trading scheme for airlines published between 2005 and 2009. It analyses the methods used and finds that the models used are often over-simplified, omitting important variables or that the reliability and robustness of the modelling results are reduced by linking models that are based on different assumptions. The paper also summarises the possible environmental (CO2 emissions) and economic (air fares, demand for airline services, supply of airline services, competitiveness, GDP, carbon price) impacts in the studies reviewed for the year 2020. Overall, the effects are found to be small: for example, CO2 emissions are expected to decline by a maximum of 3.8% and the maximum impact on GDP in the EU was found to be −0.002%. The reasons for these insignificant impacts are analysed in this paper; it is also found that there are some positive aspects of including aviation in the EU ETS.
Article
This paper discusses methodologies for analysing the existence of limits to growth of leisure air travel and defines the concept of demand maturity. It considers the air market as one of a number of inter-related travel markets and applies these concepts to a UK case study. The paper concludes that the UK air international leisure travel market is only at the early stages of maturity; whilst the overall leisure travel market seems to be much nearer to full maturity. This means that if UK air travel is still to experience healthy growth rates, it must be at the expense of the growth of some other UK travel market.
Article
This paper presents two gravity models for the estimation of air passenger volume between city-pairs. The models include variables describing the general economic activity and geographical characteristics of city-pairs instead of variables describing air service characteristics. Thus, both models can be applied to city-pairs where currently no air service is established, historical data is not available, or for which factors describing the current service level of air transportation are not accessible or accurately predictable. One model is limited to city-pairs with airports not subject to competition from airports in the vicinity, while the other model includes all city-pairs. Booking data of flights between Germany and 28 European countries is used for calibration. Both models show a good fit to the observed data and are statistically tested and validated.
Article
Whilst much effort has been made to communicate to the public the importance of reducing carbon footprints in the home, one area where emissions are growing rapidly and little attempt has been made to increase consumer understanding of the impacts is holidays, particularly those involving air travel. Using focus group research, this paper explores tourists’ awareness of the impacts of travel on climate change, examines the extent to which climate change features in holiday travel decisions and identifies some of the barriers to the adoption of less carbon-intensive tourism practices. The findings suggest that many tourists do not consider climate change when planning their holidays. The failure of tourists to engage with the climate change impact of holidays, combined with significant barriers to behavioural change, presents a considerable challenge in moving the tourism industry onto a sustainable emissions path. The findings are discussed in relation to theoretical perspectives from psychology and sociology.
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