Air Canada sets ambitious net-zero GHG emissions target by 2050

©Air Canada Airbus A220

Air Canada has announced ambitious plans for its long-term commitment to advancing climate change. Canada’s flag-carrying airline has targeted 2050 as the year it will reach net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for global operations. In the mid-term, the carrier has set a target of reducing GHG emissions by 30% compared to 2019 levels by 2030 in both its air and ground operations.

As part of its campaign, it will be investing CA$50 million in sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), along with carbon reduction and removal. To meet these targets, Air Canada will focus on the energy-efficient Airbus A220 and Boeing 737 MAX for its operational fleet of aircraft which are expected to average approximately 20% less fuel per seat and emit approximately 20% less CO2 and 50% less nitrogen oxide than the aircraft they replace.

From the innovation angle, the company will continue to evaluate the viability, safety and performance of new electric, hydrogen and hybrid operational technologies, and other innovations such electric drones to complement and support its business network. With regard to carbon reductions and removals, Air Canada will explore carbon negative emission technologies and other direct emission reduction and removal strategies in addition to further developing its carbon offset strategy for CORSIA compliance.

Future progress comes from a place of strength as the carrier has improved fuel efficiency by 43% since 1990.  Between 2016 to 2019, it reduced more than 135,000 tons of GHG from its air operations through fuel efficiency initiatives, and its work in fuel sustainability. “Economic growth and sustainability are equally important, and we have a strong track record for both. Despite the severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, we remain deeply committed to long-term sustainability. Climate change is critical, and we believe we can and must do more to address this for the future of our environment,” said Michael Rousseau, President and Chief Executive Officer, Air Canada.

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