Boeing Commercial Airplanes and the Environment

Air transport contributes 2 percent of human-produced CO2 emissions and this could reach 3 percent by 2050, according to updated figures from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The industry is now working towards carbon-neutral growth -- no increase in carbon emissions in spite of traffic growth -- as a first step towards a future of carbon-free energy.

Boeing takes this commitment very seriously. Today, more than 75 percent of our commercial airplane research and development efforts are focused on advancing environmentally progressive innovations. See below for more information.

Aircraft entering today's fleet are 70 percent more fuel efficient than early commercial jet airplanes, consuming about 3.5 liters per passenger per 100 km. Technological innovation is a fundamental part of this industry.

Sustainable Biofuels
Boeing is actively driving the development of sustainable biofuels for use by the aviation industry. Technology is advancing faster than expected. Many airlines could be flying on a percentage of biofuels within the next five to ten years.

Renewable Energy
Advanced technologies for generating and harnessing energy are reducing the need to produce electricity from non-renewable resources. Boeing is developing applications within key energy harvesting technologies, including electrodynamic, thermoelectric, piezoelectric, hydrogen fuel cells and solar cells.

Noise Reduction
Boeing continually pursues noise-reducing innovations, making each new airplane quieter than its predecessor. New technologies promise even greater improvements.

Air Traffic System Efficiency Today's airspace systems are inefficient. Though safe, the current model is serving increased demand with outmoded technologies - the result: system congestion and delays that waste fuel and increase emissions. Boeing is helping solve this complex problem by collaborating with governments and industry partners.

Commitments Boeing is working to continually improve the environmental performance of our operations, our products and the aviation system overall. We have a plan and a set of commitments to which we hold ourselves accountable.