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Towards more sustainable air travel for future generations

Climate change is the greatest challenge of our generation. At Airbus, we understand that society expects us to rise to this challenge. This is why we are playing our part in an industry-wide decarbonisation movement that targets carbon-neutral growth from 2020 onwards to ensure future generations can enjoy flying as much as we do.

Carbon-neutral growth from 2020 

Just 50 years ago, not much data existed on the impact of air travel on our planet. Today, we know the aviation industry represents approximately 2% of global human-induced COemissions. And this is not without a direct impact on our industry: the global rise in temperatures is preventing standard take-offs and increasing the frequency of bumpier flights. 

The aviation industry has already made tremendous progress in reducing its environmental impact. But these achievements are no longer enough: air travel is expected to double over the next two decades. In the years to come, the aviation industry’s main challenge will be to mitigate COemissions of aircraft at a time when society’s demand for air travel is growing.


The aviation industry has committed to two key decarbonisation targets. At Airbus, we include the following targets:  

  • Carbon-neutral growth: From 2020, net carbon emissions from aviation will be capped. This means that even though air travel is increasing, greenhouse gas emissions will not (ATAG).
  • 50% reduction in COemissions: By 2050, net aviation carbon emissions will be half of 2005 levels (CORSIA).
An infographic highlighting primary aspects of the aviation industry’s emission-reduction plan.

Impactful partnerships to tackle climate change

To achieve these ambitious targets, we fully understand that we cannot move forward alone. This is why we align our climate action plan to a variety of industry-wide environmental principles and targets driven by organisations in which Airbus plays a leading role.


  • ATAG: The Air Transport Action Group is a global independent body that brings together the entire aviation industry to promote sustainable growth that benefits society.
  • Clean Sky: This public-private partnership between the European Commission and the European aeronautics industry aims to develop innovative technology aimed at reducing COand gas emissions, as well as noise levels produced by aircraft.
  • CORSIA: This UN-backed programme aims to ensure a rise in international aviation emissions (above 2020 levels) is offset elsewhere.
  • IAEG: The International Aerospace Environmental Group promotes global standards for greenhouse gas emissions reporting, substances management and substitution technologies. We are a founding member of IAEG.
  • SESAR: The Single European Sky Air Traffic Management Research initiative aims to shape the future of air transportation and drive sustainable growth around the world by developing solutions for air traffic management.
  • Environment matters for the future of aerospace

    Environment Matters

    Read more about our company-wide approach to environmental stewardship as we work to lay the foundation for a more sustainable aerospace industry. Download File 2.66 MB
Earth Observation Satellites Portfolio

Monitoring climate change

Our earth-observation satellites shed light on significant environmental issues, such as climate change, pollution, deforestation and natural disasters. These include the EarthCARE satellite for one of ESA’s Earth Explorer missions and Sentinel earth-observation satellites for the Copernicus programme.

Discover Environment at Airbus

Product responsibility

Sustainable supply chain

Future aircraft

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