Speaking at a major EU summit in Madrid, Airbus President and CEO, Tom Enders, urges Europe “to invest in improving an infrastructure that so much of the world’s economic and social development relies on”.
The Airbus CEO’s comments follow the launch of The European Aviation Vision 2050, an aspirational roadmap of how the sector will handle 16 billion passengers and 400 million tonnes of cargo annually1. Airbus has been involved in developing the vision, which highlights the need for investment in education and research to meet global demand for a sustainable and greener transport network.
The European Aviation Vision 2050, aims to reduce CO2 by 75%, NOx by 90% and noise by 65%, compared to levels in 2000, while handling around 25 million flights per year within Europe. It suggests that by then 90% of travellers will be able to complete European journeys in four hours and that flights will arrive within one minute of planned arrival times, reducing flight times and fuel burn due to air traffic congestion.
Enders added: “The implementation of fuel saving technology in our aircraft has allowed us to satisfy a 45% increase in demand for air transport over the last decade with only a 3% increase in the use of jet fuel. Innovation has allowed us to do more with less, but these ambitious goals set out by this Vision need investment and action now in order to safeguard Europe’s position as a leader in sustainable aviation, in a changing economic and political landscape,” says Enders.
“Aviation supports 33 million jobs and 8% GDP. It is imperative that our investment in air transport reflects the huge economical and social benefits it brings”, Enders concludes.
The Vision 2050 echoes the findings of the Airbus Passenger 2050 global survey, which reveals that seven out of 10 people expect to fly more, in greener aircraft and with access to their ‘digital world’. “The future of aviation must take into account technological advances, but also passenger demands”, says Enders. “Air traffic demand doubles every 15 years and as more people travel by air, it will take huge step change advancements to handle this increase in traffic while simultaneously preserving our environment.”
The survey is part of The Future by Airbus initiative, which aims to promote debate about the challenges and choices faced by the industry as it seeks to look to the future.