The airline took a number of steps to increase fuel efficiency last year
Etihad Airways eliminated approximately 195,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions in 2017, the airline announced on Sunday.
According to Etihad, the airline was able to decrease the amount of fuel consumed by its aircraft by over 62,000 tonnes of fuel, a 3.3 percent improvement from the year before. The figure is the equivalent of 850 flights between Abu Dhabi and London.
The airline added that flight plan adjustments across its network cut flight time by 900 hours, leading to savings of 5,400 tonnes of fuel and eliminating 17,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.
Additionally, Etihad also retired several older aircraft in favour of the fuel efficient Boeing 787. Etihad currently operates 19 Boeing 787s in its fleet of 115 passenger and cargo aircraft, with an average age of 5.4 years.
“2017 was a particularly good year for fuel efficiency,” said Etihad COO Richard Hill. “The combination of retiring some of our older aircraft and increasing the proportion of Boeing 787 aircraft within our fleet, together with optimising our flight paths among a range of other initiatives has made a noticeable improvement to our fuel consumption and emissions profile.”
Etihad also improved collaboration with air traffic control providers at many airports, particularly in Abu Dhabi, in order to improve the efficiency of its descent and approach profiles.
In a statement, Etihad noted that 980 tonnes of fuel were saved in 2017 through an increase in ‘continuous descent’ approaches, in which aircraft reduce height gradually. The manoeuvre is considered the most fuel efficient way to descend.
By combining key fuel saving projects with operational improvements, the efficiency per passenger kilometre improved by as much as 36 percent on some of Etihad’s routes.
“We place a high value on sustainability and are always looking for new opportunities to reduce our carbon footprint,” said Ahmed Al Qubaisi. Etihad Aviation Group’s senior VP for government and international affairs.
“We’re extremely proud of our year-on-year improvement, which benefits not only Etihad in terms of fuel savings but also the environment on a wider level.”