(15 Mar 2021)
Air Canada is aiming to achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) throughout its
global operations by 2050.
To reach this, the airline has set
absolute midterm GHG net reduction targets by 2030 in its air and
ground operations compared to its 2019 baseline, and has committed
to investing $50 million in Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF), and
carbon reductions and removals.
“Despite the severe impact of the COVID19
pandemic, we remain deeply committed to long-term sustainability,”
said Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer at
Air Canada. “Climate change is critical, and we believe we can and
must do more to address this for the future of our environment.
This is why we are further embedding climate considerations into
our strategic decision-making, and undertaking a very ambitious
plan that is meaningful, will support Canada’s leadership position
on climate change, advance de-carbonization in the airline
industry while keeping fares affordable for customers.”
Air Canada has identified the following key
carbon reduction pillars:
Fleet and operations: Air Canada
will continue deploying its newly modernized and energy efficient
Airbus A220 and Boeing 737 MAX narrow-body fleets that are more
efficient and expected to average approximately 20 per cent less
fuel consumption per seat and emit approximately 20 per cent less
CO2 and 50 per cent less nitrogen oxides than aircraft they
replace, continue to integrate climate factors in route and fleet
planning, phase out carbon-intensive ground equipment, further
advance electric vehicles and seek other electrification opportunities.
Innovation: Further evaluate the viability,
safety and performance of new electric, hydrogen or hybrid
operational technologies, and other innovations such as short-haul
transportation opportunities and electric drones to complement and
support Air Canada’s global business network.
Aviation Fuels and clean energy: To further its work on
sustainable aviation fuels, Air Canada will invest $50 million in
SAF and other low carbon aviation fuel (LCAF) development,
evaluate the practical applications of renewable energy sources
such as biogas and renewable electricity, and energy transition measures.
Carbon Reductions and Removals: Air Canada will
explore carbon negative emission technologies and other direct
emission reduction and removal strategies in addition to further
developing its carbon offset strategy for CORSIA compliance,
customer offerings and more.
Details and updates to Air
Canada’s ambitious climate plan are expected be posted on its
the coming weeks.
The airline currently reports its carbon
footprint, targets and climate protection strategy through the CDP
and will also be reporting through the Task Force on
Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) framework as of
Since 1990, Air Canada has
improved fuel efficiency by 43 per cent and, from 2016 to 2019, the
airline reduced more than 135,000 tonnes of GHG from its air
operations through fuel efficiency initiatives. Its work in
fuel sustainability includes:
– Participating in eight
biofuel flights with ongoing, active support for the development
of SAF in Canada including working with the Government of Canada
on policy development to support a Canadian-based sustainable
aviation fuel industry.
– Lead airline on Canada’s Biojet
Supply Chain Initiative (CBSCI), a project to identify and solve
supply logistic barriers that arise when aviation biofuels are
introduced at major Canadian airports.
– Contributing to the
Civil Aviation Alternate Fuel Contrail and Emissions Research
project (CAAFCER) to test the environmental benefits of biofuel
use on contrail formation, benefiting all aviation stakeholders
and climate science researchers.
– Implementing a
technologically advanced livery paint and painting process
resulting in significant weight and fuel savings, with no chrome,
lead or other heavy metals and is expected to last longer when
compared to standard paint.
– Operational improvements
realized through more than 100 projects to optimize fuel
consumption, including profile departure, RNPAR (a type of
performance-based navigation), single engine taxiing to aircraft
weight reduction such as the use of lightweight crew luggage, iPads for pilots replacing paper manuals and lighter weight
composite onboard carts.
Since 2007, a
long-standing program offering customer carbon neutral purchase
options has resulted in more than 60,000 tC02e of emissions
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