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1.3.1: Challenges

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    The growth of air traffic in the past 20 years has been spectacular, and forecasts indicate that there will continue in the future. According to Eurocontrol, in 2010 there was 9.493 million IFR2 flights in Europe, around 26000 flights a day. Traffic demand will nearly triple, and airlines will more than double their fleets of passenger aircraft within 20 years time. This continuous growth in demand will bring increased challenges for dealing with mass transportation and congestion of ATM and airport infrastructure.

    Aviation is directly impacted by energy trends. The oil price peaks in the last period (2008-2011) due to diverse geopolitical crisis are not isolated events, the cost of oil will continue to increase. Dependence on fuel availability will continue to be a risk for air transport, specially if energy sources are held in a few hands. Aviation will have to develop long-term strategies for energy supply, such as alternative fuels, that will be technically suitable and commercially scaleable as well as environmentally sustainable.

    Climate change is a major societal and political issue and is becoming more. Globally civil aviation is responsible for 2% of CO2 of man made global emissions according to the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). As aviation grows to meet increasing demand, the IPCC forecasts that its share of global man made CO2 emissions will increase to around 3% to 5% in 2050 Penner [4]. Non-CO2 emissions including oxides of nitrogen and condensation trails which may lead to the formation of cirrus clouds, also have impacts but require better scientific understanding. Thus, reducing emissions represents a major challenge, maybe the biggest ever. Reducing disturbance around airports is also a challenge with the need to ensure that noise levels and air quality around airports remain acceptable.

    2. IFR stands for Instrumental Flight Rules and refers to instrumental flights

    1.3.1: Challenges is shared under a CC BY-SA 3.0 license and was authored, remixed, and/or curated by Manuel Soler Arnedo via source content that was edited to conform to the style and standards of the LibreTexts platform; a detailed edit history is available upon request.

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