Private jets do not mean waste. In fact, they often mean the opposite. Take humanitarian missions. These jets bring vital supplies and people after disasters such as earthquakes. The reality is that private jet companies are making huge efforts to be green, and many are succeeding.
People Travel Only When They Need To
If you travel often, you’ll have encountered this phenomenon at least a few times: You’re one of just a handful of people on a flight. Even flights to Los Angeles can be nearly empty. These sparsely populated commercial flights mean wasted fuel, a large carbon footprint and pollution that did not have to happen. Now, suppose a group of people takes a private flight one way to Los Angeles, and the jet must return to the original city afterward. Does it fly back empty? No. Private jets allow booking on that otherwise empty leg flights Los Angeles. That’s environmentally smart.
Even when commercial flights are full, the waste can be staggering. A commercial jet filled to capacity and traveling three hours emits about 149 tonnes of carbon dioxide. Meanwhile, a private aircraft seating eight people would emit 12.52 tonnes. These eight people are likely to spend much more money at their destination than commercial travelers. Proportionately, private jet travel benefits local economies more and has a lower carbon footprint than commercial flights. There’s more:
- The efficiency of private jet travel drastically cuts ground emissions (lowers idling, point-to-point transport, etc.).
- Smaller/different airports for private travel mean jets take off and land faster, using less fuel.
- Jet sharing programs enable travelers to “jetpool” (carpool).
Private Jets Limit Mass Tourism
Mass tourism is good in some ways. For example, it creates jobs, including those for locals, and leads to road and infrastructure improvements. Governments and businesses can invest tourism dollars into worthy endeavors. However, mass tourism does result in low-paying work, badly behaved tourists, litter, pollution and the wrecking of historical sites and natural habitats.
Private jet travel limits mass tourism while carrying many of its advantages. Private jet travel creates jobs in travel destinations, and they’re good-paying jobs. Important natural and manmade sites are not subject to the same forces they are with mass tourism.
They Bolster Economic Growth
Airports with no scheduled commercial service can do very well. One example is New Jersey’s completely private Teterboro Airport. It sends billions of dollars into the local economy each year. Directly and indirectly, the airport is responsible for about 15,000 jobs.
They Offset Their Carbon Footprint
Some private jet companies have already turned to environmentally friendly fuel alternatives, and many more are following. National Business Aviation Association members aim to achieve carbon-neutral growth in international travel this year, with a 50% carbon reduction by 2050. Some ways they’re doing this:
- Planting trees in forests and parks, and on abandoned land
- Supporting anti-deforestation efforts
- Supporting environmentally friendly solutions
- Implementing mandatory minimum carbon offset programs
Suppose you take a gulfstream charter to a small town that has only a private airport. Carbon programs offset the environmental impact of flying, and two-hour ground transport/car rental is not necessary from the closest commercial airport. There is also no need for connecting flights and fuel waste. Private jets and sustainability are issues worth exploring in depth. Investigate, and you’ll see many, many environmental advantages.