Coronavirus ‘could see 38% drop in airline CO2 emissions’

Global aviation carbon dioxide emissions during February and March fell more than 10 million tonnes, according to a new survey

Festival Net Zero 2021

The Covid-19 pandemic has the potential to slash airlines’ carbon emissions by more than one third this year as travel bans and restrictions across the world have caused a substantial decrease in air traffic demand.

That’s according to the Australia Institute, which suggests air transport carbon dioxide emissions during February and March fell more than 10 million tonnes from the same period last year.

A survey based on the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) economic assessment expects a 38% fall in airlines’ carbon dioxide emissions in 2020.

Researchers say this translates to a fall in global aviation carbon emissions of 352 million tonnes from civil aviation in 2020, compared to 2019.

The report also highlights the coronavirus crisis has the potential of permanently changing flying habits, in particular regarding business travel, as businesses turn to online alternatives for face-to-face meetings.

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