You may or may not be aware that EASA has been working on new rulemaking on the topic of Fuel Management. This has been done within Rulemaking Task, RMT.0573. On March 25, the decision was officially published on the EASA website. The decision helps to support environmental improvements in aviation. It allows operators to reduce the amount of fuel carried during operations, which reduces the CO2 emissions of the overall flight and hence its environmental impact.
Environmental improvements with no reduction in safety
Of course its vitally important that there is no reduction in safety. The new rules make sure that aircraft carry enough fuel to ensure the safety of operations in case their flight plan needs to change for reasons that could include the delays on approach to the destination airport or even the impossibility to land due to weather considerations or other indeed anything else. Carriage of this extra fuel, adds weight to the aircraft, increases the fuel consumption and total emissions from the flight.
The amount of additional fuel required can be optimised, while continuing to ensure high safety levels, due to improved risk assessment, calculations based on better data and better decision making. The new rules come as a regulatory package, which consists of Regulation (EU) 2021/1296 and ED Decision 2022/005/R providing the AMC and GM. These EASA rules are also aligned with the latest guidance from ICAO.
Not just fuel but also alternative energy sources
One additional point is that the fuel management principles will also apply for aircraft powered fully or partially by alternative energy sources, such as electric aircraft. Another great step forward in terms of the environmental impact of aviation.
The most important things for you to know:
- These Rules will enter into force on October 30, 2022.
- They bring in three different fuel schemes: a basic fuel scheme, fuel scheme with variations and individual fuel scheme. The transition from the current rules to the basic fuel scheme requires little additional effort from the perspective of an air operator. The other two schemes are voluntary and will take more resources to implement as they require enhanced monitoring capabilities from the airlines. National authorities will also have to adjust their oversight to ensure that safety levels are not compromised.
- EASA will provide support for air operators through the Safety Promotion material in Safety Promotion Task (SPT.0097) outlined in EPAS Volume II (Page 71). More updates on these Rules will be posted in the EASA Air Ops Community in the coming weeks. We will also host a Webinar on this topic from 1330-1530 on Thursday July 7, 2022 (moved from July 5, 2022).