Presenting the Keys to a Sustainable Flight Department

 - September 23, 2021, 6:58 AM

With demands rising for sustainability and decarbonization across aviation, AIN hosted its first of four regional Building a Sustainable Flight Department Conferences yesterday in New York focused on concrete steps operators can and are implementing toward achieving carbon neutrality.

While responsible for only 0.04 percent of global emissions, business aviation is nonetheless blazing that path with new fuels, technologies, and other efforts, as the half dozen sessions covering a range of critical sustainability topics underscored. Said Dassault Falcon Jet CEO Thierry Betbeze in opening remarks, “We should be proud, not shy.”

Sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) is “critical” to emissions reductions, NATA president and CEO Timothy Obitts said. He noted efforts to expand annual U.S. production from less than two million gallons currently to three billion gallons by 2030, and then 100 percent of business aviation's turbine fuel needs by 2050.

Carbon offsets and other footprint reductions can “bridge the gap” in goals along the way, 4Air COO of sustainability Nancy Bsales explained while presenting sustainment options and tools. Meanwhile, NBAA is developing a sustainable flight department accreditation program to help operators “move step by step to a sustainable future,” said Stewart D’Leon, NBAA's director of environmental and technical operations. For a hands-on primer, Clay Lacy Aviation senior v-p Scott Cutshall provided a detailed “what, when, and how” of his company’s ambitious and ongoing commitment to sustainability.