• Airline calls on competitors to scrap old aircraft

    The low-fares airline easyJet has called on European governments to remove almost 700 of the oldest and most polluting aircraft from active service by 2012.

    [mailchimp_signup][/mailchimp_signup]EasyJet is using data by AirCraft Analystical System, which provides information for the air travel industry, which show that 678 planes in use today were built before 1990. It says if they were all taken out of service and replaced with the cleanest planes currently available, there would be emissions savings of up to 5%.

    EasyJet’s initiative has come as the aviation industry struggles to show it is taking air travel’s contribution to global warming seriously. The company has an average age of 2.2 years for its 130 aircraft, making its fleet the youngest in Europe, so calls for older planes to be scrapped will cost easyJet nothing.

    Another British airline, Virgin Atlantic, has teamed up with Boeing and GE to design a biofuel that can be used in commercial aircraft. Virgin says it wants to test the fuel in a Boeing 747 by the end of 2008.

    T&E has calculated that it would take around half of Great Britain’s supply of arable land to fuel Virgin Atlantic’s fleet on soy- or rapeseed-based biofuels.

    • The “open skies” aviation agreement between the EU and the USA has been signed. The environmental community in both Europe and America is concerned that the deal will counteract efforts to reduce the environmental impact of aviation, and will wipe out any gains from aviation’s proposed entry into the EU Emissions Trading Scheme in 2011.

    This news story is taken from the May 2007 edition of T&E Bulletin.