The Boeing Company intends to continue growing its business without increasing its environmental footprint, Kim Smith, Boeing vice president of environment, health and safety, announced while visiting Qatar and the rest of the region recently.
Since the start of 2008, Boeing has reduced cumulative carbon dioxide emissions by more than 400,000 metric tons while increasing monthly airplane production by 35 percent, said Smith, Boeing's leader for environmental sustainability.
The CO2 reduction is the equivalent of removing 80,000 cars from the road for one year.
Between 2008 and 2012, Boeing also implemented conservation efforts and successfully reduced water use by more than 2 billion liters enough to fill more than 800 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
Over the next few years, we intend to continue increasing airplane production without expanding our environmental footprint, Smith said, announcing that Boeing is committing to zero-carbon growth from operations for the period 2013 to 2017.
Boeing also reaffirmed its commitment to help the global airline industry meet its goal of achieving zero-carbon growth after the year 2020.
It is estimated that commercial air travel accounts for between 2 and 3 percent of global CO2 emissions.
To reduce the environmental footprint of aerospace, Boeing is focusing on new technologies such as:
Light-weight, more-efficient airplanes such as the 787 Dreamliner, the new 747-8 and the 737 MAX each of which offer double-digit improvements in fuel economy and carbon emissions compared to the airplanes they replace.
Promoting the development and commercialization of sustainable aviation biofuels derived from sea grasses, algae and other substances that don't compete with food crops for land or water.
Modernizing the global air traffic management system, with the potential to reduce the carbon footprint of commercial air travel by 12 percent.
It is estimated that reducing the length of the average flight by one minute would reduce annual CO2 emissions by nearly 4.4 metric tons.
Airlines, research institutions and companies in the region are leaders in developing a cleaner future for the global aviation industry, Smith said.
The region's airlines operate some of the world's modern, most-fuel efficient fleets of aircraft. They are actively developing cleaner, alternative aviation fuels, Smith added.
These airlines are devoted to recycling, conserving water and reducing emissions in their operations. And they are leading participants in international efforts to minimize the environmental footprint of aviation.