With 50 years of operations in the aviation industry under our belt, it stands to reason that we’re proud and enthusiastic members of the aviation community. Aeroplanes are exciting. The astounding physics of propulsion, the beauty of the engineering that allows human transportation to the other side of our globe in a matter of hours – these are great and inspiring things.

However. Society’s reliance on and love for the aviation presents a massive challenge to the survival of the human race. Our industry creates 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions; barring a full paradigm shift, that figure will only increase with the predicted growth in international air travel , and the ensuing climate emergency threatens every one of us.

Now the Covid-19 pandemic and the associated drastic reduction in commercial air travel means the skies are quieter. Even though we might be busier than ever mitigating the effects of the novel coronavirus on our lives and livelihoods, the current situation has gifted us a few extra moments of reflection.

Two truths: the pandemic won’t last forever, but things will look different when we come out the other side. It’s crucial that we don’t lose this sense of how things could be; less pollution, a reduction in greenhouse gases, and an associated positive impact on the environment. As is so often the case, the answers to many of our environmental problems already exist – now we need the will and the scale.

As members of the aviation community we have a responsibility to think about how our business can be part of a sustainable future for air travel, and to take steps to operate in as environmentally friendly – as ‘Green’ – a way as possible.

To this end, at the beginning of this year we announced a corporate commitment to sustainability. We have embarked on a year of changes aiming to lower our carbon footprint at our HQ and in our operations. Some are small, some bigger, but all important.

We’ve started with our packaging, weeding out plastics and finding alternatives to our current suppliers. We’ve stepped up our commitment to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle in terms of our consumables in-house, and we’re looking at ways of improving our lighting and heating arrangements so that they’re as effective and sustainable as they can be. We’ve galvanised ourselves with a business unit dedicated to these issues, as well as taking part in the wider aviation community’s conversations which have led to UK aviation committing to zero net emissions by 2050.

And, because as every good scientist knows, for every action there’s a reaction – we’ll be devoting a proportion of our annual profits to initiatives which combat climate change. Watch this space.

On this Earth Day, in this strange year, we’re looking towards a greener, more sustainable future for aviation.

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