Greta Thunberg may have stirred a hornet’s nest by saying as it is in front of world leaders on the issue of climate change. Her speech has even mobilised youngsters across the world, prompting leaders to do more and even change strategies to save the planet. However, one of the biggest and main culprits that causes harm to the environment is the aeroplane. Taking direct flights is one way to ensure that you reduce your carbon footprint.
In the past few years, issues concerning our planet have come to the forefront. While travel itself across the world has gone up considerably. Taking a flight within the country too has become easier with so many domestic airlines. Wish to go to Chennai or Delhi for a short trip, simply take a flight. Many don’t even mind paying the extra charge on last minute bookings. But, do we ever think about the ill-effects of flights on the environment? The answer is mostly ‘no’. Who would pause and think so much? Afterall, no major damage is happening right now, isn’t it? How many of us are going to live to see the days of doom? Right now, it’s our time and convenience that matters the most. This is where Thunberg comes in when she accused world leaders of creating an environment that was harmful for hers as well as future generations. We do have to think about our planet, for ourselves as well as our future generations.
Carbon footprint due to aeroplanes
Did you know that the global aviation industry contributes to around 2 percent of carbon dioxide emissions, as per the International Air Transport Association. You might think that’s very little but that’s quite a bit and, as more and more people travel by air, the climate is sure to be damaged further. Apparently in 2018, globally, about 94 billion gallons of fossil fuel was burnt by commercial airlines. That’s a staggering number and we certainly need to do something about it.
While economy class packs in more people in one space, business and first class cause more harm as there are fewer flyers accommodated in the space. Obviously, most of us travel economy, yet, we do fly, and that itself is detrimental to the eco-system.
How a direct flight helps?
So, what do we do? Do you stop travelling completely? We all know, that’s not going to happen. However, besides, taking daytime flights, carbon offsets, and other such options to reduce your individual carbon footprint, taking a non-stop flight does a lot for the environment.
A direct flight saves you time of course, but it uses less energy as aeroplanes use about 25 percent fuel during take-off and landing. They use far less after reaching an altitude and you can only imagine how much fuel is used during take-offs and landing every single time.
Airlines are doing their bit as well, and in fact, the longest flight is from Sydney to London, which was started recently by the Australian airline, Qantas.
So, if you share Thunberg’s angst and love our earth while wanting to do something to save it, do your bit by opting for long-haul flights instead of stop-overs among other things.
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