The Guardian - Yasmeen Louis
Banning flights on routes with fast rail connections could cut the UK’s emissions from domestic aviation by a third, a report has found.
The report by the thinktank Intergenerational Foundation (IF) found that domestic aviation was responsible for the emission of 2.7 megatonnes of CO2 in 2019 alone – the equivalent of the annual emissions from 1.7 million petrol cars or the energy to power 700,000 UK homes for a year.
If domestic flights on routes with a rail alternative under 4.5 hours were banned, the authors say it would reduce emissions by 885 kilotonnes – a 33% reduction. The reduction rises to 53% when only taking Great Britain into account, as there are no rail links between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK.
The authors of the report call for a domestic flight ban policy similar to the one implemented in France earlier this year. In April, France became the first country to implement a nationwide short-haul flight ban where alternative trains under 2.5 hours were available.