Thursday, October 11, 2007

Airplanes, Automobiles & Emissions

Ever wonder why the media ceaselessly singles out the airline industry as a global warming pariah when it accounts for just 2% of worldwide emissions? In what might be the most irrelevant alarm call of the year, Britons have been singled out as the "world's biggest emitters of CO2 from air travel" while Great Britain itself leads the world in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and compliance with the Kyoto Protocol.

So why the focus on air travel? As usual, follow the money and you'll find the answer.

Far and away the single largest source of greenhouse gases is the combustion of fossil fuels, a stat being driven largely by automobile use. By no coincidence the automobile industry is also the single largest spender in media advertising, while the airline industry doesn't even make it onto the pie chart (page 7 for those checking).

By keeping attention on airline emissions, mass media has framed a convenient scapegoat that distracts public attention from the real problem and avoided a significant threat to their bottom line. The greatest irony, is that worldwide travel may be one of the most significant social forces capable of driving action on global warming.

A true solution to global warming will start with a genuine world centric awareness that encompasses the needs of all people and the limits of our biosphere. And there is little that can drive this awareness faster and more effectively than the individual decision to get on an airplane and discover something about the rest of the world.

So go ahead and book your next flight, just bike to work when you get home.

9 comments:

mutleythedog said...

I had wondered about this anomaly...

smoo said...

Hey congrats on making it to the blogger buzz today: http://buzz.blogger.com/2007/10/environmental-blog-roundup.html

Shannon from Local Warming: www.local-warming.blogspot.com

Odiyya said...

Hi Shannon,

thanks for the heads up. I never new this until you and the herbinator let me know.

☆☆☆VJanTIreFlx☆☆☆ said...

your blog is cool☆☆☆☆☆

gwen said...

Interesting! The Wall Street Journal just published an article the other day noting that IT equipment actually accounts for 2% of emissions also...

So it looks like we bloggers are just as responsible as the plane-flyers. (apparently if we all use energy-efficient laptops we're less to blame, though, so don't turn off your computer just yet!)

Here's that article - http://blogs.wsj.com/biztech/2007/10/15/how-much-energy-does-tech-consume/

Inquisitive Minds want 2 Kno said...

A small community north of Houston has implemented a biodiesel fueled generator that actually provides backup power for city hall and a portion of the community. It's powered by fuel from chicken fat!
Very low, if not zero, emissions and it is renewable. We need more towns willing to take these kinds of steps!
http://e85.whipnet.net/alt.fuel/texas.biodiesel.html

Phillip Huggan said...

The reason for the focus upon air travel is that air travellers can obviously afford a carbon surcharge (as opposed to bus travellers or hitchhikers).

Air CO2 emission also are somewhere around 2-4X as bad as other emissions, a fact not yet recognized in emissions tabulations. Air travel, like shipping, is also fast growing so solutions now have a high multiplier.

I pretty much agree that air tickets should be carbon taxed. An easy position for someone who is not a regular flyer to take.

Seo Link Master said...

Fuel is the adrenaline of any car, truck or engine. Thus, it is every vehicle owner's wish to enhance the fuel of their car and save more of it as well. With this in mind, the most innovative fuel-saving tool in the automotive industry was conceptualized and created: the Tornado Fuel saver. An automotive air channeling tool that creates a swirling air motion, the Tornado Fuel Saver allows the air to move in a faster and more efficient way by whirling air around corners and bends. Hence, more fuel is saved.

emery said...

Hey, Thanks for the this important information.keep it up.great post