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Tue 7 May 2019 01:56 PM

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Revealed: how Etihad Airways is reducing its carbon footprint

Etihad Airways takes measures to reduce 148,000 tonnes of carbon emissions in 2018, equivalent to 1,236 flights between Abu Dhabi and Barcelona

Revealed: how Etihad Airways is reducing its carbon footprint
The airline said it continues to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by implementing fuel saving initiatives, reinforcing its commitment to sustainability.

Etihad Airways has revealed that it reduced 148,000 tonnes of carbon emissions in 2018, equivalent to approximately 1,236 flights between Abu Dhabi and Barcelona or the removal of over 10,200 cars from the road.

Last year, the airline's B777-200s were retired in favour of the most fuel efficient commercial aircraft in operation, the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, due to its lightweight composite structure.

The airline said it continues to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by implementing fuel saving initiatives, reinforcing its commitment to sustainability.   

Fuel consumption is influenced by several factors such as air traffic management, weight carried and how the aircraft is flown.

Captain Sulaiman Yaqoobi, vice-president flight operations, Etihad Airways said: “By increasing collaboration on a monthly basis within the airline’s Flight Operations, Network Operations, Ground Operations areas and Fleet Engineering, Etihad saw noticeable improvements to its fuel savings and emissions profile, a top agenda for a sustainable airline.”

He said Etihad pilots play a critical role in the airline’s environmental initiatives, significantly increasing savings by analysing insights and flight data to effectively apply key fuel efficiency procedures.

They use a single engine to taxi the aircraft in and out on the tarmac reduces fuel burn and to reduce drag and conserve fuel, pilots select lower flap settings, he added.

Statistics on reduced engine taxiing as well as reduced flap landings achieved savings equated to saving fuel for about 1,440 hours of flying time, saving 7,900 tonnes of fuel and eliminating 24,900 tonnes of carbon dioxide.

A new app has been introduced to all pilots which provides up-to-date information on current fuel-saving achievements as well as saving opportunities for every flight they are performing.

Several weight reduction projects have also been completed, including a carpet retrofit across the airline’s fleet to a lighter option, the refining of catering loads based on the actual number of passengers on board, and controlling the amount of potable water loaded based on actual requirement.

An improved engine washing procedure performed at regular intervals to remove environmental deposits, which increase engine workload, also improved efficiency by as much as 0.5 percent, the airline said.

In January 2019, Etihad Airways flew the world’s first commercial flight using locally produced sustainable fuel made from plants grown in saltwater, the flagship project of the Sustainable Bioenergy Research Consortium.

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