by louanne on September 18, 2017 - 1:32pm
The aviation industry greatly impacts the environment, in fact, “it presently accounts for 4-9% of the total climate change impact of human activity.” (Suzuki, n.d) In order for an airplane to operate, jet fuels need to be burnt which amongst many other harmful gases releases CO2 into the atmosphere. What also increases the amount of harm on the environment is that these emissions are taking place at high altitudes meaning that they begin a chain of chemical reactions. According to Roger Tyers, an environment sociologist, “aviation is essentially a fossil fuel industry, one which guzzles an eye-watering 5m barrels of oil every day.” This has devastating effects on the environment. A major issue is that airplanes do not work on renewable energy, and while they are a bit more efficient than once before, there is still a long way to go before the issue is resolved.
Over the years, trade has played a more important role in the way a society functions. As population increases, the need for resources have increased. Developing countries are also exporting more and more goods in order to better their own economy, these countries include Brazil, and a large part of Asia. A large part of international trade functions with aviation and has increased by 35% since 1970. Also, CO2 emissions are projected to increase to between 50-250% by 2050. (Ferrante, 2015) This means that exportation is taking place on an international level and that planes are being used more and more.
While many people and countries are aware of the impact aviation has on climate change, there are not willing to do much about it. One major impact of the aviation industry is that it encourages tourism. If countries were to limit the amount of flights they allow to enter their country or raise the price of flights/fuel that would discourage traveler from visiting their country where people spend money and encourage their economies. Travelers would no longer be taking flights as often as they do and some may not travel at all. This means that people will not go and encourage local or even international companies and will decrease the country’s economy. If we look at regions such as the Caribbean, their economy almost entirely relies on tourism meaning that if they were to lose that, they would be in poverty.
It’s time to wake up to the devastating impact flying has on the environment:
Air travel and climate change:
The surprisingly complex truth about planes and climate change:
Reducing Air Pollution from International Transportation: