The German news show Tagesschau reports that climate-neutral flying likely will remain “an illusion” for the foreseeable future.
Hat- tip: Klimanachrichten
The Tagesschau reports:
But the development challenges are still enormous. It is also unclear where the gigantic amount of renewable energy needed will come from. Just to cover the current demand for paraffin synthetically, at least three times as much solar and wind energy would be needed as was produced worldwide in 2021. Everything that is currently planned will not be enough by far, says transport expert Gössling. “We need huge amounts of fuel.” And for that, hundreds, possibly even thousands of new, large production plants are needed worldwide.”
What about hydrogen or batteries? The article says: Don’t get your hopes up.
To avoid climate-damaging emissions, battery and hydrogen aircraft are also being developed. But these can only help to a small extent, even in optimistic scenarios. Batteries are much too heavy for large aircraft, and their energy density is much lower than that of paraffin. Therefore, they will probably only be used in very small aircraft on short routes. Hydrogen is also only suitable to a limited extent. It needs much more space than paraffin and will therefore probably not be used for long distances. Airbus, for example, is currently developing possible aircraft models for medium distances. A first prototype should be developed by the end of this decade, Airbus said on request. Approval will then take several more years. At the earliest, it should go into operation in 2035.”
So jet fuel still remains the only real option. But that isn’t good for CO2 emissions, which of course will need to be offset somehow. Flying thus may become a mode of transport for the rich and elite only.