Now the pilots are having their say about the environmental impact of flying. “Pilots have long felt aggrieved that their industry is being used as a scapegoat for global warming”, says a new report commissioned by the British Air Line Pilots’ Association. “They have been particularly annoyed about two serious misconceptions – that air transport is the biggest polluter (which it is not) and that the industry is highly subsidised (again,which it is not).”

I agree on the first point, of course, but the second point is a little disingenuous to say the very least, but we’ll let that go as there’s a much better point the report makes that’s worth zooming in on.

“Modest reductions in road transport, electricity usage from power stations and improvements in the home would allow for aviation emissions…There are other measures which could and should be taken to reduce CO2 emissions and allow for continued air travel.”

So we’re back once again to the old “we’re a more important part of the economy than anyone else and should be allowed unrestricted growth regardless of the negative impacts” chestnut. It would be interesting to see just this question put to the vote, but until that time we should at least make the cost of flying represent its cost to the environment. Personally, I don’t think there should ever be any escaping the “polluter pays” principle. Even if you as self-important as the aviation industry.

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