Ecological Footprint of Aviation
"The kerosene tax to reduce the carbon footprint produced by aviation is subject to ongoing political and social debate. Despite being the safest means of transport. But what is the magnitude of this ecological footprint?
According to a study from the International Center for Climate and Environmental Research (CICERO) and the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA). The emissions of a driver who travels without more is 250 kg of CO2 occupants by car for 1000 km (0.25kg of CO2/km). This figure coinciding with that of another person who made the same plane trip. For the Taca association, this emission is around 0.22kg of CO2/km. On the other hand, if the same person made that journey with four other occupants. Carbon dioxide emissions would be considerably reduced (about 0.05 kg of CO2/km). Same expense as traveling by train, five times less than by plane.
781 million tons of CO2 were emitted into the atmosphere by the aviation industry. Assuming this 2% of the total emissions of that year, increasing to 5% if we count the rest of greenhouse gases. Increasing further if we take into account the environmental impacts of machinery manufacturing, fuel extraction or airport construction.
Air travel has other effects than the emission of harmful gases. Such as the production of trails and cirrus (a type of cloud). Which influence the climate and the ozone layer, or the noise produced by airplanes, which affect To millions of people.
This same industry estimates that, in twenty years, the number of flights is will have doubled and with it, emissions. Magdalena Heuwieser, of the European NGO Finance and Trade Watch, says that between 1990 and 2010, global CO2 emissions increased by 25%, and 70% from aviation. Following this rate, aircraft emissions will have multiplied by eight in 2050, representing 20% of global emissions.
After all these statements, and with the urgency of climate change, the simplest solution would be to reduce the number of flights, an idea ratified by Andrew Murphy, of the environmental organization Transport & Environment: “We have to accept that our desire to fly quickly and for a little money they are not sustainable, and change our consumption habits ”. That is why the option of creating a tax on aircraft fuel is gaining more and more strength.
According to a report by the Transport & Environment organization, a tax on aviation kerosene sold in Europe (as do countries such as the US, Australia, Japan or Canada) would reduce the emissions of the sector by 11% (16.4 million tons of CO2, equivalent to removing about 8 million cars from roads) without having a net impact on employment or the economy as a whole. Likewise, this tax would suppose a contribution of 27,000 million euros to the public coffers every year.
23 de Julio, 2019