Regular readers of this blog will be used to reading about the benefits of the aviation industry’s work on fuel efficiency and the huge effort being put into achieving the global annual target of 1.5% increase in fuel efficiency. Every now and then it’s good to get a perspective on what these savings actually mean in terms of CO2 being released into the atmosphere and what this actually means to the environment

Today, NATS, one of the UK’s main providers of air traffic control services, announced that up to 1 million tonnes of CO2 was saved in UK airspace each year. These savings were due a range of operational measures such as more direct routes, better procedures (i.e. continuous, rather than stepped climbs) and new air traffic control techniques.

When you think about it, 1 million tonnes is a staggering amount to have been saved purely from efficiency measures – and this is only in one country. That’s equal to the entire amount of annual transport emissions produced by a nation like Armenia, Cuba or Iceland. This is a prime example of how the range of action being taken by the aviation industry is mitigating its impact on the environment, whilst at the same time enjoying all the benefits air travel brings to the world.