Airport Technology - Smruthi Nadig

Aviation is one of the largest sectors creating Scope 3 emissions for oil and gas. Will emissions reductions affect future demand for aviation fuels?

Is the source of the world’s petrochemicals, the oil and gas industry takes centre stage in the push against greenhouse gas emissions. It acts as the source of all fossil fuels, with the emissions of other reliant industries falling into the “Scope 3” emissions of oil and gas.

One of the largest of these dependent industries is aviation, which accounted for over 2% of global energy-related CO₂ emissions in 2021. These contribute significantly to global warming, with over-sized practical effects due to planes depositing emissions directly into the upper atmosphere.  

According to the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), the CO2 emissions of all flights departing from the EU and European Free Trade Association airports reached 147 million tonnes in 2019. This marked a 34% increase in levels in 2005, coming from a 15% increase over the same time period.  

Climate researchers believe that aviation alone could potentially cause the planet to warm by 0.1℃ by 2050. Half of this rise has already happened, with the rest coming over the next three decades. Although flights were suspended during the Covid-19 pandemic, this is said to have delayed the related warming by only five years.  

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