Greenhouse gases and travel options..

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Seeing the post regarding electric taxiing systems got me thinking (dangerous, lol!) and playing Devil's Advocate. I hope this may generate an interesting discussion, so please bear with me if you would.

Electric taxiing would be trying to cut down on greenhouse gas production by not having engines running for as long at airports far and wide, fair enough.. But...

How much more greenhouse gas production would be eliminated by only having essential flights taking to the air? By that I mean, medical, humanitarian aid and cargo flights. No holiday flights........

WHAAAAT? Holidays: We all like holidays: It is good to relax and not be at work for some time throughout the year. However, nobody said that one HAS to go abroad or even drive long distances to have a holiday from ones place of work..

Is there a deep seated requirement for me to go and visit the USA, Australia, Japan, or any other country currently accessible by shorter flights? No. All those visits would purely be for my own entertainment and enjoyment - I'm not delivering aid, or cargo or going for medical reasons.

I can vicariously see what other countries are like thanks to the internet, and whilst I fully agree that it isn't the same as "being there", what about the dystopian, polluted future which awaits us? A lot of airlines exist to support the holiday trade and tourism. If those flights were banned then those companies would cease to exist as would thousands of people's livelihoods, but I once more reference the dystopian, polluted future...

If I extrapolate this doom & gloom further, how about banning and and ALL forms of NON-Essential travel using internal combustion power? No more F1, NASCAR, INDY, drag racing, truck trials or motorsport etc. etc.  No more blasting across Lake Havasu at 160 mph with twin supercharged V8s, just because IT'S FUN! No need to do it.. You can use the internal combustion to commute to and from work and for emergencies, nothing more.. 

Well... as a dedicated petrolhead and plane nut I would never want to see such a world devoid of fun... but maybe it might happen in the remainder of my lifetime...


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You scared me for a minute.  LOL


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I am a petrol head also. A diesel locomotive at idle is music to my ears. I am taking the reports with a grain of salt. There are houses, commercial buildings  catching fire every day globally. spewing pollutants. Other mishaps also. That's life.!!!!!!!!

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I think it's reasonable to envision a future in which air travel isn't a commonplace.

Different policy choices might create more options, especially for short-distance travel.  As it is, most of my current travel is between Washington DC and New York, and I try to avoid air travel as much as possible, because it just isn't worth the friction and rigamarole for the distances involved.  My first choice is the train, my second choice is the bus.  Both are more sustainable, which is an additional benefit.

Other solutions are possible - it's worth keeping an eye on the development of synthetic petroleum products.  And as I've said before, if I had money to invest, I'd be looking for opportunities in battery technology.  If someone can solve the weight and energy-density challenges, the world looks different.

Overall, there are factors in play in addition to whatever we as individuals find emotionally satisfying.

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Hi Folks,

LOL - don’t worry - given our reproduction rates - we’ll all be on a steady diet of Soylent Green right after that...




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Locked as this topic discusses global warming, a politically hot topic since the 1800's even before aircraft was invented, and political topics are known to go South very fast.

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This topic is now closed to further replies.