A short-haul flight ban is a ban that the government usually imposes on airlines. Organizations or company employees for certain business trips may also prohibit short-haul flights to their employees.
One of the reasons is to reduce the environmental impact of the flight itself. Especially in reducing greenhouse gas emissions which are the main cause of climate change.
When viewed from the time duration, short-haul flights are flights that last between 30 minutes to 3 hours. The medium-haul flights last between 3-6 hours, while long-haul flights exceed 6 hours.
You may have heard that France has imposed a ban on short-haul flights. In this article, we will cover the amount of airplanes’ gas emissions and why France decided to ban short-haul flights.
Airplanes emit about 100 times more CO2 per hour than buses or trains, and global aviation emissions are about 1 billion tons of CO2 per year. Aviation also contributes about 2.4% of global annual CO2 emissions.
Pollutants produced by aircraft need to be considered for their bad impact on the environment, even though they only contribute around 2% of total world air emissions. However, with the large number of commercial aircraft operating, the percentage of these emissions may increase.
Globally, aircraft produce 2% of the total carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions per year or as much as 13% of the CO2 emissions produced by all vehicles and are predicted to increase to 3% by 2050.
Postdoctoral researcher and climate scientist at the University of Oxford, Milan Klöwer says airplanes are one of the worst causes of climate change. Thus, limiting the use of aircraft is considered to be the most appropriate solution to overcome the problem.
Plus, with the availability of alternatives that are more environmentally friendly and as comfortable as airplanes. France also requires its citizens to switch to more environmentally friendly modes of transportation. It includes trains, for several short-distance routes.
On Friday (2/12/22), France received approval from the EU Commission for an intercity or short-distance flight ban for flights fewer than 2.5 hours. France has now officially banned short-haul commercial flights on commercial aircraft and restricted the use of the much more polluting private jets.
It is said by the European Federation for Transport & Environment, “Private jets produce more CO2. A report on Transport and Environment.”
Private jets are 14 times more polluting and 50 times more polluting than trains or commercial airplanes.
The ban measure is part of their effort to reduce carbon emissions by 40% by 2030. Banning short-haul domestic flights may sound drastic as it will affect 12% of French domestic flights. However, the French Transport Minister, Clemet Beau, is proud that France is a pioneer in this field. “This is a major step forward in the policy of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.”
Initially, the ban will only affect three routes between Paris Orly and Nantes, Lyon, and Bordeaux. Those are where rail alternatives are available.
If rail service improves, France will add more routes including those between Paris Charles de Gaulle and Lyon than Rennes, as well as trips between Lyon and Marseille.
They currently do not meet the criteria for a ban since trains to airports in Paris and Lyon do not allow passengers to arrive early in the morning or late at night.
France did not include other routes – such as the one from Paris Charles de Gaulle to Bordeaux and Nantes – because their travel time exceeded the 2.5-hour limit.
Thomas Gelin, Greenpeace EU climate campaigner said “The French ban on short-haul flights where quick train connections exist is a baby step, but it’s one in the right direction.”
When viewed from the eco-perspective, it will have a great environmental impact. By reducing carbon emissions, we can avoid excessive carbon emissions, which can cause global warming.
However, there are many complex factors that decision-makers and suppliers must consider, such as budget and time for consumers.
According to a GlobalData survey, accessibility and affordability are the two most influential factors travelers consider when deciding where to travel.
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