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Extinction Rebellion, the environmental campaign group, was busy celebrating Earth Day last Thursday (April 22nd). In London, they smashed bank windows to show that people in glass houses should not throw stones (ignoring the fact that the bricks came from the outside). In Washington, they dumped wheelbarrow loads of cow manure as a critique of US climate policy. This astounded most Americans who felt the last thing politicians need is access to more bull excrement.
The announcements from business aviation companies were more constructive. Jet Linx Aviation said it was signing up to 4AIR, the sustainability rating system, allowing its clients to offset carbon emissions.
Broker Magellan Jets announced a 100-Hour Carbon Offset Jet Card. The National Business Aviation Association launched a Sustainable Flight Department Accreditation Program.
Bye Aerospace, one of the most exciting companies in the electric aircraft revolution, also announced the eFlyer 800. “The eFlyer 800 is the first all-electric propulsion technology airplane that achieves twin-turboprop performance and safety with no CO2 and extremely low operating costs,” said George E. Bye, Bye Aerospace CEO. “This type of remarkable economy and performance is made possible by the electric propulsion system and advanced battery cell technology that results in significantly higher energy densities.” Safran – which already supplies the powertrain for the eFlyer2 (a ground-breaking pilot trainer) and eFlyer4 – will power it.
Earlier in the week the coalition on sustainable fuels – led by the European Business Aviation Association and the General Aviation Manufacturers Association – organised Europe’s first Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) Conference. Among other things the coalition wants to encourage the growth of production in Europe, incentivise research, provide a book-and-claim system and monitor SAF use.
It was extremely timely, as the EU is soon to announce its ReFuelEU Aviation Initiative which will mandate air carriers to use a blend of SAF. It still needs to be passed but there is strong support in the EU – and from the industry – for it. The conference had lots of highlights (and is available online to view) but the overall message is that business aviation is keen to lead the way with SAF.
Extinction Rebellion also dumped fake coal outside the Lloyds of London building to complain about coal mines being insured. The underwriters were probably more concerned that they may have to pay out for the smashed windows.
“The eFlyer 800 is the first all-electric propulsion technology airplane that achieves twin-turboprop performance and safety with no CO2 and extremely low operating costs”: George E. Bye, Bye Aerospace.