Ryanair has updated its carbon efficiency target by aiming to cut CO2 emissions by 10% by 2030.
Europe’s largest airline will have to cut emissions from 66g per passenger/km to 60g in just over a decade to achieve the target.
The no-frills carrier called on EU member states to reform the European skies and tackle air traffic control monopolies, which it claimed would reduce CO2 emissions by 10%.
Ryanair expects to pay more than €630 million in environmental taxes in the current financial year.
The carrier attacked the taxation as delivering “no environmental benefits”.
The levies “favour high-fare inefficient airlines over low-fare efficient ones – while disproportionately impacting travel affordably and regional economies”.
Ryanair’s hopes of cutting emissions remain largely dependent on the introduction of new Boeing 737 Max aircraft which have been grounded since March following fatal crashes in Indonesia and Ethiopia killing a total of 346 people.
While the airline has a $20 billion order for 210 new 737s, which will carry 4% more passengers, reduce fuel burn by 16% and cut noise emissions by 40%, it remains unclear when the aircraft will be certified to fly again.
The airline admitted that only 2% of passengers donate to carbon offsetting their fares although €2.5 million has been raised to support projects for environmental partners First Climate (Uganda), Renature Monchique, Native Woodland Trust and Irish Whale and Dolphin group.
Ryanair also reiterated a commitment to eliminating non-recyclable plastics from its operations within five years – 82% of all on board consumables have already cut out plastic.
A sustainability drive by the carrier includes an environmental-focused advertising campaign designed to build awareness with passengers and a dedicated website.
Chief marketing officer Kenny Jacobs said:“As Europe’s greenest/cleanest airline, we are proud of what we have achieved to date – and are pleased to launch our newly updated, improved, and expanded Environmental Policy detailing our improvements and future targets.
“This comprehensive document details our accomplishments to date – including becoming the first airline to announce monthly CO2 emissions; significant operational improvements to reduce emissions and non-recyclable waste; an integrated communications campaign to raise awareness among our customer base; and reaching €2.5 million in donations on our hugely successful carbon offsetting scheme, with funds raised going to worthwhile climate projects.
“Operating the youngest fleet in Europe, high load factors and efficient fuel burn, has enabled us to continuously lower our CO2 emissions to become the greenest airline in Europe.
“With this new environmental policy, we have set ourselves even more ambitious targets on lowering emissions, as well as committing a $20 billion investment in new fuel efficient aircraft – highlighting our commitment to maintaining and strengthening Ryanair’s position as leaders in addressing environmental issues and a changing climate.”
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