Air travel enables people to get to know and appreciate new places and cultures, enjoy the diversity in our social environment and enrich our own culture. Additionally, it also brings economic benefits and stimulates innovation.
At the same time, European citizens are increasingly aware of the environmental issues related to air travel. In the European Aviation Environmental Report (EAER), citizens can find an objective overview of the significant developments that have taken place in the aviation sector related to climate change, noise, and air quality.
EAER 2022: A holistic view of EU civil aviation
EASA published the latest European Aviation Environmental Report in September 2022. This is the third edition following the publication of the EAER in 2019 and 2016.
The EAER 2022 looks at the historic and future scenarios of air traffic and its associated noise and emissions. The report also summarises the latest scientific understanding of these impacts and measures to reduce them.
In summary, it aims at answering the following questions:
- What is the environmental performance of the European aviation sector?
- How might the sector's performance evolve in the future?
- What measures are reducing climate change, noise and air quality impacts?
- How can the sector further improve its level of environmental protection?
Navigating the European Aviation Environmental Report 2022
The EAER 2022 can be downloaded in PDF version and is available in an interactive online format where you can easily navigate between the different sections.
The full report is available in English, while the Executive Summary and Recommendations are available in all EU and UN languages.
Areas for improvement on environmental protection
The path to decarbonization of the aviation sector requires a multifaceted approach. The EAER 2022 focuses on five main areas where the level of environmental protection can be improved.
Technology & Design
On this topic you can read about the latest certified data for traditional subsonic aircraft and engine designs, which enables a comparison of the environmental performance of aircraft and their engines. It also provides an overview of the growing work associated with new environmental standards for emerging novel designs.
Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF)
Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) are sustainable, non-conventional, alternatives to fossil-based jet fuel. Transitioning to SAF is one of the key measures to decrease emissions by the aviation sector. In this chapter you can learn about different types of SAFs, how sustainable they are and what is being done to promote their use.
Air Traffic Management (ATM) & Airlines
Inefficient ATM systems have a negative impact on the environment. In this section, you will read more about how operational improvements can reduce excess fuel burn and emissions, and therefore contribute to the decarbonization of aviation.
Airports are an important piece of the aviation sector. Here you can find information about noise regulatory measures and what’s being done at airport level to improve their environmental performance.
Market-Based Measures (MBM)
Market-based measures complement other measures in addressing the climate change impact of the aviation sector. In this chapter you can learn about two such measures, namely the EU’s Emissions Trading System (ETS) and ICAO’s Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), as well as some insights on emerging carbon pricing instruments and international cooperation activities.
Further reading on EASA Light:
- EASA's type certification of a fully electric aircraft
- Sustainable Aviation Fuels
- Market-based Measures for more sustainable aviation
The 2022 EASA Annual Safety Conference addressed ‘Airport Safety & Environmental Sustainability through Innovation’. Take a look at the conference material available on line.
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