Boeing and Airbus Advocate Better Air Traffic Control

April 24, 2008 by  
Filed under Features

While aircraft manufacturers Boeing and Airbus are usually fierce competitors, they joined forces at Geneva recently during part of a pledge to cooperate in working towards improving environmental issues related to the industry.

The pair argued that if congestion at airports was reduced, the impact that aviation has on global warming could be greatly reduced. With this in mind the two companies agreed to coordinate their efforts in developing the air traffic systems for the next generation of aircraft. They also stated that they would try to push authorities and suppliers to become more environmentally friendly.

It has been estimated that the new state-of-the-art air traffic management system that is set to be put in place in Europe would allow the industry to save up to 12 percent on fuel consumption in only a few short years. It is hoped that the new agreement to co-operate in this regard will ensure that the new air traffic systems could be used by both American and European aircraft. The new pact was made at an aviation and environmental conference held just days ago in Geneva. Boeing, Airbus and fourteen other aviation companies present at the conference all signed a declaration wherein they committed themselves to finding a pathway to carbon neutral growth. However the declaration set no target dates for this goal.

Environmentalists seem to think that, while the step is in the right direction, it is not enough. João Vieira of Transport & Environment said that reducing the speed at which airliners fly would be a far more effective way of reducing aircraft emissions. He suggested offering clients an eco-conscious, slower flight alternative. Other environmentalists stressed that, while the air traffic management was welcome, aircraft are contributing a massive portion of the greenhouse gases currently damaging the ozone and so more should be done to alleviate the problem. This is especially true because, even though the air traffic management would decrease fuel consumption in existing aircraft, more and more people are taking to the skies because of decreases in air fares and so traffic is likely to increase overall.

Hopefully the signing of the new declaration will be taken seriously by all those involved and efforts to decrease the impact that aviation has on the environment will be given the highest priority.

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