Lufthansa Group's fuel consumption drops as fuel efficiency beats the four-litre barrier for the first time
Lufthansa A320 fitted with fuel-saving Sharklet wing tips
Thu 15 May 2014 – Passenger airlines in the Lufthansa Group collectively broke through the four-litre fuel efficiency mark for the first time in 2013, with an average consumption of 3.91 litres of kerosene per passenger per 100 kilometres. This represents a 3.8% improvement over 2012. The Group, which also includes subsidiaries SWISS, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines and Germanwings, points out that it achieved over twice the annual 1.5% fuel efficiency improvement target set by the airline industry. Absolute fuel consumption within the Group dropped by 1.3% year on year, the second time in a row to record a fall. A department was set up in 2013 specifically to improve fuel efficiency and is currently examining almost 1,000 individual steps to achieve further potential savings.
“The new record is a clear sign that all our efforts to increase fuel efficiency have taken hold,” said Christoph Franz, Lufthansa Group CEO. “Ecologically and economically, we have a great interest in making the most efficient use possible of the fuel we need to carry our passengers. That is one reason why we are investing billions every year in next-generation aircraft.”
The Group is undertaking its biggest-ever fleet renewal programme and as of the end of 2013, it had 261 aircraft on order for delivery by 2025, representing a capital expenditure of €32 billion ($44bn) at list prices. The order includes 100 A320neo family short-haul aircraft, which the Group said will reduce the take-off and landing noise footprint by around 50% due to the neo’s highly efficient and quieter engines. “It will make life much easier for those living near major air traffic hubs,” claimed Lufthansa.
In absolute terms, the Group’s fuel use decreased 114,152 tonnes compared to 2012 and carbon dioxide emissions fell by 359,587 tonnes, which it equates to the annual emissions of oil-fired central heating systems in about 50,000 homes. The Group’s airlines have reduced their carbon emissions on German domestic routes by 20% since 1990 even though traffic on a passenger-kilometres basis has risen by 60%.
Programmes initiated by the new fuel efficiency department include on-board weight reductions, testing and implementing of new flight methods and the development of intelligent software tools.
The Group has revealed it paid €353 million ($484m) in German air travel tax in 2013, which it said was one-and-a-half times the combined operating profit of Lufthansa and Germanwings.