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Wildlife traffickers highly dependent on a vulnerable air transport sector, finds report | ROUTES,Wildlife trafficking,C4ADS
Wildlife traffickers highly dependent on a vulnerable air transport sector, finds report
Wed 15 Aug 2018 - Wildlife traffickers are highly dependent on commercial air transport to move their contraband quickly, where they continue to exploit vulnerabilities in the system, and instances of trafficking have been recorded in 136 countries around the world. A new analysis by ROUTES Partnership finds wildlife seizures in air transport more than quadrupled between 2009 and 2017, with seizure numbers in 2017 increasing by 40 per cent over the previous year. Traffickers have become adept at exploiting lagging technology, corruption, capacity problems and other issues within airports, and often target specific airports or flight routes. The 200-page 'In Plane Sight' report is considered the most comprehensive assessment of its kind to date and reveals the movement, trends and methods of wildlife traffickers in the global air transport sector. It also comes up with more than a dozen recommendations based on seizure data for preventing wildlife trafficking through the sector. Read more ...

Legal challenges against Heathrow expansion filed in High Court over environmental and climate concerns | Heathrow Airport,Greenpeace,Friends of the Earth,Heathrow Hub
Legal challenges against Heathrow expansion filed in High Court over environmental and climate concerns
Tue 14 Aug 2018 - Lawyers acting for a consortium of local authorities have issued judicial review proceedings in the High Court against the UK's Transport Secretary over the expansion of Heathrow Airport. The five councils claim the government's Airports National Policy Statement (NPS), which sets out support for the project to add a third runway, fails to properly deal with the impact on air quality, climate change, noise and surface access, and was a flawed consultation process. The challenge is also supported by the Mayor of London and Greenpeace. Lawyers acting for another environmental campaign group, Friends of the Earth (FoE), have also started formal legal action at the High Court on the basis that allowing the building of a new runway is unlawful as it fails to address the UK's climate change obligations. Read more ...

Airspace efficiency improvements by NATS and FABEC states result in lower fuel burn and emissions for airlines | NATS,FABEC
Airspace efficiency improvements by NATS and FABEC states result in lower fuel burn and emissions for airlines
Mon 13 Aug 2018 - UK air traffic services company NATS reports more than 200,000 tonnes of aircraft CO2 emissions were saved last year as a result of improvements from more fuel efficient ways of using UK airspace. NATS calculates the reduction has saved airlines more than £30 million (S38m) in annual fuel costs over the year and resulted in an overall cut of 6.4 per cent in CO2 per flight since 2008. Progress has been achieved by using more direct routes and improved vertical profiles, the use of continuous instead of stepped climbs and descents, and the introduction of new air traffic management technologies. Meanwhile, almost 13,000 tonnes of airline CO2 emissions have been saved as a result of seasonal arrangements between six European air navigation service providers (ANSPs) in charge of the FABEC airspace. Read more ...

Finnair study finds travelling public would pay extra to reduce environmental impact of flights | Finnair
Finnair study finds travelling public would pay extra to reduce environmental impact of flights
Mon 13 Aug 2018 - According to a consumer research study by Finnair, almost all Finns - 94 per cent - want to reduce the emissions from their air travel and three-quarters are willing to pay extra as part of the ticket price, but want the charge to be used directly for environmental purposes. Respondents supported the use of biofuels (55 per cent) and carbon capture (28 per cent) from forests and other biomass as the best alternatives for reducing the environmental impacts of flying. Only 11 per cent, however, were in favour of a tax on flights, with 73 per cent responding such a tax should not be introduced if the proceeds could not be directly attributed to environmental efforts. The study also showed the majority of Finns were unaware of international market mechanisms to address aviation emissions. Read more ...

UK government announces major funding for green aerospace R&D and backing for sustainable aviation fuels | SAF SIG,KTN,Velocys
UK government announces major funding for green aerospace R&D and backing for sustainable aviation fuels
Wed 18 July 2018 - Following recent grants awarded to two projects developing potential commercial-scale sustainable aviation fuel production, the UK government has pledged £343 million ($448m) public and industry investment for R&D into cleaner and quieter civil aircraft. The government says a principle aim is for the UK to be at the forefront of the revolution in electric and hybrid planes, with £255 million going towards 18 new research and technology projects. A major beneficiary will be the E-Fan X project under development by Airbus, Rolls-Royce and Siemens. Meanwhile, delegates from government, aerospace, fuel specialists, airlines and academia took part in a conference in Birmingham last week to seek out collaborative opportunities for a future UK sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) industry.  Read more ...

A new generation of supersonic commercial aircraft could have high environmental consequences, says ICCT study | ICCT,SST,Boom,Aerion,Spike
A new generation of supersonic commercial aircraft could have high environmental consequences, says ICCT study
Tue 17 July 2018 - The last commercial supersonic flight took place 15 years ago with the final grounding of the Anglo-French Concorde due to poor economics, unviable fuel efficiency and noise bans. However, the revival of passenger supersonic transport aircraft (SST) may be just seven years away as three US start-up companies develop a new generation of civil aircraft to fill a void in a market they believe still exists. Aerion and Spike, aimed at business jet operators, and Boom, with a commercial airliner capable of carrying up to 55 passengers, have the backing of a number of major aerospace manufacturers. Boom claims to have options from five airlines, including Japan Airlines and Virgin. Although the three say they can overcome the fuel and noise drawbacks of Concorde, a new paper by ICCT expects them to exceed existing international standards on aircraft pollution, noise and CO2 emissions. Read more ...

SAS pledges to use renewable jet fuels on all domestic flights by 2030 and partners with Swedish oil refiner Preem | SAS,Preem
SAS pledges to use renewable jet fuels on all domestic flights by 2030 and partners with Swedish oil refiner Preem
Fri 13 July 2018 - Scandinavian airline SAS has signed a letter of intent with Swedish petroleum company Preem to produce renewable aviation fuels using forestry residues and other waste materials. SAS has set a target to replace all its jet fuel used on domestic flights with biofuel by 2030. With refineries in Gothenburg and Lysekil, Preem refines and sells petroleum products to companies and consumers in Sweden and abroad, and is one of the country's biggest exporters. SAS says it has adopted a strategy to reduce its emissions and climate impact on a long-term basis and if the collaboration with Preem progresses then the two partners expect to agree a long-term jet biofuel supply contract. SAS has also announced that backdated to April 1, it will compensate CO2 emissions generated by customers flying on its Youth Tickets. Read more ...

Eurocontrol report highlights action needed by aviation industry to deal with impacts of climate change | Eurocontrol,adaptation
Eurocontrol report highlights action needed by aviation industry to deal with impacts of climate change
Tue 10 July 2018 - Climate change will damage aviation infrastructure, alter patterns of passenger demand and lead to more operational disruption, yet only half of industry organisations have begun to plan for this, says a Eurocontrol report looking at challenges facing commercial aviation in Europe between now and 2040. Under a 'most likely' scenario, the number of flights within Europe could grow at a rate of 1.9 per cent per year to reach 16.2 million flights a year by 2040, or 53 per cent higher than today. However, Europe is already struggling to cope with existing levels of traffic and a lack of airport capacity will lead to even higher delays and 1.5 million unaccommodated flights per year by 2040. As well as a capacity challenge, a future climate with changes to temperatures, rainfall, wind and storm patterns, and the sea level requires industry to move faster with adaptation, says the intergovernmental air traffic management body. Read more ...

China refutes reports it has withdrawn from the voluntary phases of CORSIA although its concerns remain | China,CORSIA
China refutes reports it has withdrawn from the voluntary phases of CORSIA although its concerns remain
Sat 7 July 2018 – Reports that China has withdrawn from the voluntary pilot and first phases of CORSIA, the global carbon offsetting scheme for international aviation, are inaccurate, a representative of China's delegation to ICAO has told GreenAir. He said China had yet to make a decision on whether to join CORSIA from the beginning and had been surprised that ICAO had continued to list it on the ICAO CORSIA website as an early participant without consultation. With the recent adoption by the ICAO Council of the CORSIA SARPs, China noted action had now been taken by ICAO to correct the listing. However, said the representative, China has concerns over the direction of CORSIA discussions and reserved its right under the Chicago Convention to take further action, including filing a difference to the SARPs. Read more ...

Gatwick and Lyon airports step up energy initiatives to maintain carbon neutral status | Gatwick Airport,Lyon-Saint Exupéry,Haven Power,Vinci Airports
Gatwick and Lyon airports step up energy initiatives to maintain carbon neutral status
Fri 6 July 2018 - Following its recent certification renewal as a carbon-neutral airport under the industry's Airport Carbon Accreditation (ACA) programme, London's Gatwick Airport has signed a new three-year deal with Haven Power to continue supplies of 100 per cent renewable electricity. This follows a previous five-year agreement that is credited as a major factor in achieving the carbon-neutral status for the UK's second-largest airport. With electricity accounting for 75 per cent of the ground operations carbon footprint, Gatwick says it is on course for reaching its renewable energy target of 25 per cent by 2020. Meanwhile, the stabilising of its electricity consumption in spite of a 40 per cent increase in the number of passengers has helped enable Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport to renew its carbon-neutral status under the programme. Read more ...

LanzaTech bags second advanced jet fuel grant from UK government for a first commercial-scale ATJ facility | RTFO,LanzaTech
LanzaTech bags second advanced jet fuel grant from UK government for a first commercial-scale ATJ facility
Wed 4 July 2018 - Alcohol-to-jet (ATJ) fuel technology company LanzaTech has secured a £410,000 ($540,000) grant from the UK Department for Transport (DfT) to help with project development funding for building the world's first large-scale ATJ facility producing commercial quantities of low carbon jet fuel in the UK. The grant from the DfT's Future Fuels for Flight and Freight Competition is for a similar amount awarded to the Velocys/British Airways municipal solid waste to jet fuel project that was announced recently. With its airline partner Virgin Atlantic and others, LanzaTech is planning a 40-50 million litres per year plant that would convert ethanol produced from waste industrial gases into jet fuel. Earlier this year, ethanol was added to ASTM's specification for ATJ synthetic paraffinic kerosene. Read more ...

ICAO reaches key stage in CORSIA implementation with adoption of SARPs but challenges remain over sustainability criteria | CORSIA
ICAO reaches key stage in CORSIA implementation with adoption of SARPs but challenges remain over sustainability criteria
Thu 28 June 2018 - ICAO's governing 36-State Council has adopted standards and rules for the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) that come into effect from next year. The scheme, which aims to cap net emissions from 2020, starts with a pilot phase in 2021 but airlines and other aircraft operators with annual CO2 emissions above 10,000 tonnes will have to measure and report their emissions from 1 January 2019 so a baseline can be established. The aviation industry said the adoption was a key step in CORSIA implementation but added important decisions were still required on sustainability criteria for offsets and alternative fuels eligible under the scheme. In a last-minute controversial decision, the Council agreed to extend the definition of sustainable aviation fuels under CORSIA to include lower carbon fossil-based fuels. (Updated 29 JuneRead more ...