Taking a leap towards making our future sustainable, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) has committed to net-zero emissions by the year 2050. 193 member states have pledged to support this Long-Term Aviation Goal (LTAG) at the conclusion of its 41st Assembly session.
What Exactly Does Net-Zero Emissions Mean?
Net-zero emissions is like a goal, which is to remove all man-made greenhouse gas emissions from the Earth’s atmosphere via various reduction measures.
How will Net-Zero Emissions Help the Environment?
As net-zero looks at emissions overall, it allows removing any unavoidable emissions like those from the aviation or manufacturing industry. This process of removal could be through nature just like trees take C02 from the atmosphere or via future technology or transforming various industrial processes. It will majorly be helpful in tackling climate change and significantly reducing global warming.
Importance of Net-Zero
To have a safe and sustainable future, it is essential to reach the goal of net-zero emissions. It will not only reduce global warming thereby preventing a lot of calamities such as floods, drought, femine etc. but it will also help in maintaining the ecological balance. This is why most of the countries, industries, and even individuals should work together in order to find ways that would reduce the carbon we produce.
This could be through different methods and on small or large scales. For instance, as an individual, you can opt for public transportation or carpooling to save fuel and cut on carbon emissions. Various airlines and the aviation sector have been working to create hydrogen-powered planes that will take the goal of achieving net-zero emissions to the next level. A project similar to this is already being worked upon by the UK government and the Aerospace Technology Institute.
Net-Zero Emissions and the Aviation Industry
As critics, several organizations, and environmentalists have been raising the issue of carbon emissions by international flights for the past few decades, the aviation industry and governments of different countries have been working on achieving the goal of net-zero emissions for this sector.
Based on research conducted by International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), at present, the aviation industry contributes to nearly 2.4% of global emissions from the use of fossil fuels.
Implementation of an array of innovative technologies along with more investment in Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) is required in order to even come close to achieving net-zero emissions.
Plans have also been made to use sustainable liquid fuel, which is made by utilizing fats, waste oils, synthetic materials, and non-food crops. As it is produced using feedstocks, it doesn’t affect forest degradation, water or food supplies and is completely sustainable. Using the lifecycle of this fuel’s biogenic feedstocks, the carbon emitted is reabsorbed via plants, which reduces the aviation emissions by nearly 80%.
Is there a sustainable future ahead? What are your opinions on IACO’s promise of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050? Also, comment below and share your thoughts on how people can individually and collectively work towards achieving this goal.