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 An entire sector steps up
 Given the systemic challenge of climate change, making aviation carbon-neutral requires all players in the sector to step up, from airlines and airport operators to aircraft and equipment manufacturers, not to mention national, regional and international regulatory authorities.
Since commercial aviation really began to take off in the early 1950s, fuel consumption per passenger-kilometer has been reduced by 80%. From 2009-2017 alone, average fuel consumption decreased 17%, or more than 2%
a year. However, this improvement is offset by the long-term growth in air traffic, driven by emerging countries. Without firm actions by the entire sector, total emissions from aviation will continue to grow – and that is unsustainable.
■ Forseveralyearsnow,aviationregulatoryandtrade organizations have made strong public pledges to fight climate change. In 2010, for example, the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO, an arm of the United Nations), made a commitment on behalf of its member states to improve energy efficiency by 2% per year and to ensure carbon-neutral growth for international flights starting in 2020.
■ Private companies in this sector – airlines, plus aircraft, engine and equipment manufacturers – are represented by the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG). In 2008 they made a commitment to halve the global fleet’s net emissions by 2050, compared with 2005. ATAG set a new objective in October 2021: achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, in line with the Paris Climate Agreement to contain the rise in global warming to no more than 1.5°C4.
■ In Europe, public authorities and industry have teamed up through the Clean Aviation research partnership to set a neutral carbon target for the European aviation sector by 2050 – in other words, net greenhouse gas emissions reduced to zero for flights within Europe.
■ Several measures based on quotas for CO2 emissions use incentives to encourage the aviation sector to reduce emissions. For example, Europe set up the Emissions Trading System (ETS) in 2005, and the aviation sector joined it in 2012. In addition, there’s the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), which mandates offsets for the rise in emissions from international flights, while awaiting various low-carbon technologies to prove their maturity. CORSIA was signed within the ICAO in 2016 and took effect on international air traffic in January 2021, but not for domestic flights. Safran believes it is very important to give this scheme a chance by not combining these measures with others, and also to make sure that offset programs meet strict sustainability criteria.
 4 By about 2100, in relation to temperatures in the pre-industrial era.

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