Geneva, May 9 : While it is true that emission levels in the aviation sector are growing, the Geneva-based Air Transport Action Group has said that there is still more work to be done before a final assessment can be made of the impact of these emissions on the global environment.
Reacting to a report appearing in The Independent, which claimed that airlines emissions are 20 per cent more than previous estimates, Philippe Rochat, the Executive Director of the Air Transport Action Group, said that report was part of the working documents for an ICAO report which has been publicly available since summer 2007.
He further went on to say that the report is presently incomplete and that the data for aircraft emissions is "raw data only and do not yet take account of the forecast improvements in technological and operational efficiencies."
Rochat charged The Independent with simply taking the input of a well-known anti-aviation campaigner without checking the facts with the authors of the report, or at least seeking balanced comment from anyone in the aviation industry.
"While aviation's emissions are indeed growing, the industry has managed to use technology and operational innovations to now have a growth in emissions half that of our overall growth rate. But we are not stopping there - at a recent summit, industry leaders united behind a strategy which will see us aim for carbon neutral growth and aspire to emissions-free flight," Rochat said in a corrigendum to the report published by The Independent.
He said that aviation accounts only for two percent of the world's CO2 emissions.
"Proportionally, any small growth in aviation appears much larger than growth from the electricity generation or road transport sectors which are massive contributors to climate change," he concluded.