The document from Paris to ‘save the world’

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Our planet/image: Umweltbundesamt

On 12 December in Paris the inter- national community agreed a histo- ric deal. The world climate agree ment will ensure that global warming caused by human activity is limited. All 196 countries have approved the agreement. It was decided that global warming will be kept well below two degrees Celsius compared to levels at the end of the 19th century. (One degree has already been reached.) Efforts should be undertaken to limit the increase of ground- evel temperature to 1.5 degrees.

The CO2 emissions will soon reach their peak, according to the treaty. No great progress has been achieved with this according to Raimund Schwarze from Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ). Developing countries in particular may need longer. In the second half of the century a balance should be achieved between greenhouse gas emissions and their absorption by the oceans and forests, or through technical means such as CO2 dumping. Formulations such as decarbonization, zero emissions or emission neutrality were hindered by the oil-producing nations, India and a few others.

What does all of this mean for the aviation industry ?
” Even though international aviation and shipping is explicitly excluded from the text of the climate treaty, we believe that it will be very significant for Continue reading “The document from Paris to ‘save the world’” »

The arduous process and the high hopes of Paris

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Image: Umwelt Bundesamt

The UN Climate Change Conference, the annual State Parties Conference (Conference of the Parties, COP) was created in 1996 during the UN Climate Change Framework Convention. Up to now the results have only been minor, but the hope and expectations for Paris are high. The Conference 2015 which started November 30th was supposed to end December 11th continues…

So far, the aim of the Climate Change Conference was to develop a succession agreement to the Kyoto Protocol which expired in 2012 and which up until now has been the only binding instrument of international law for the policy of climate conservation. A global post-Kyoto settlement in which many no longer believed should now be decided on at the 21st UN Climate Change Conference (COP 21) in Paris. What had been achieved since 1992 in Rio?

A Chronology

1992: United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in Rio de Janeiro
Following years of scientific and political discussions about the protection of the climate, the UN Conference on the Environment and Development, ”UNED”, took place in June 1992. At this historical “Rio Conference” the climate framework convention was Continue reading “The arduous process and the high hopes of Paris” »

Less Noise, Less Fuel

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DLR research aircraft Airbus A320 ATRA. Image: DLR

Two new research projects of the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt, DLR) aim to achieve less noise and lower fuel consumption.
Two research projects that the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the Environment & Community Center (UNH) presented in Kelsterbach near Frankfurt on 24 November are aimed at reducing aircraft noise over residential areas.
On behalf of the UNH, a subsidiary of the state of Hesse, the DLR is expected to test a pilot assistance system called LNAS (Low Noise Augmentation System) with the A320 ATRA research aircraft during regular operations at Frankfurt airport in the summer of 2016). The system is supposed to offer a noise-optimized approach procedure. The researchers wish to find out Continue reading “Less Noise, Less Fuel” »

Super jumbo message against illegal wildlife trade

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Image: Emirates

Two Emirates A380 jets took to the skies this week, wearing special livery in support of United for Wildlife, a global collaboration that unites the efforts of the world’s leading wildlife charities in the fight against the illegal wildlife trade.

The livery, featuring some of the planet’s wildlife threatened by poaching and the illegal wildlife trade, aims to raise awareness of the illegal wildlife trade and communicate the need for urgent action. The Rt Hon The Lord Hague of Richmond, Chair of the United for Wildlife Transport Taskforce said: “We welcome the efforts and commitment made by Emirates airline to combat the illegal wildlife trade. This is more than just an environmental issue. The illegal wildlife trade is now recognized as a serious and organised transnational crime. It drives corruption, Continue reading “Super jumbo message against illegal wildlife trade” »

Results of the NORAH study presented

_77A9872 (2)The results of the noise impact study NORAH (Noise-Related Annoyance, Cognition and Health), the most comprehensive investigation carried out so far on the effects of air, rail and road traffic on people, were presented to the public on 29 October in Frankfurt.

For almost five years the effects of sound on up to 27,000 participants have been investigated by nine scientific institutions. Research and professional institutions from the areas of medicine, psychology, social science, acoustics and physics joined forces to do so. The studies took place at Frankfurt airport, as well as at comparison sites in Cologne/Bonn, Berlin and Stuttgart. Never before have correlations been examined in such breadth and depth, said Johann-Dietrich Wörner, Executive Board of the Frankfurt Forum Airport and Region (FFR). NORAH is a milestone in noise impact research.

Over 2500 pages of report findings

The Consortium presented over 2500 pages of reports, which must now be thoroughly analyzed. The results so far can essentially be summarized as follows: Statistically, all three modes of transport have a significant effect on the risk of depression. There is no statistically verifiable relationship between aircraft noise and an increase in blood pressure and heart attacks or strokes. The reading and learning behaviour of primary school children is, however, significantly affected by aircraft noise. This newly available scientific evidence must be evaluated in detail over the coming weeks. During the press conference, Johann-Dietrich Wörner appealed for the results to be dealt with ‘very carefully’.

NORAH – Assignment and financing
The contracting authority of the NORAH study is the Environmental and Neighbourhood Establishment GmbH (UNH) in Kelsterbach, a subsidiary company of the State of Hesse. In addition to the State of Hesse, local authorities, Fraport, airline companies and the UNH contributed to the financing of the studies.

Airport and region forum
In 2008, the Hesse State Government decided to set up an airport and region forum (FFR), in which the dialogue between the region and the aviation industry can be continued. At the centre of the discussions was the impact of air traffic in the Rhine-Main region.