Boeing has released its 2008 Environment Report, detailing its performance, strategy and actions to reduce its environmental footprint and lead the aerospace industry with environmentally progressive products and services.“Climate change and pollution are serious global concerns,” said Jim McNerney, Boeing Chairman, President and CEO. “Recognizing that, Boeing has set a clear strategy to help protect our eco-system. Our greatest contributions will continue to come from innovation-delivering improved environmental performance for customers while relentlessly reducing our own footprint.”
Over the last 40 years, carbon dioxide emissions of individual aircraft have been reduced by around 70% and the noise footprints have been reduced by approximately 90%, although this is set against a backdrop of soaring aircraft numbers. Boeing targets improving fuel efficiency of each new generation of commercial airplane by 15 percent compared to the airplanes they replace.
“It’s a good record, but it’s clear we need to accelerate our efforts,” said McNerney. “Because of the tremendous benefits aerospace brings to the world, our industry - and our company with it - is growing, and we are focused on achieving carbon-neutral growth and then continued reductions.”
The 2008 Environment Report states that Boeing’s manufacturing operations have achieved significant improvements between 2002 and 2007. On a revenue-adjusted basis, Boeing has reduced energy use and carbon dioxide emissions at its major facilities by 24% and hazardous waste by 30%. On an absolute basis the reductions are 5% for energy use, 4.8% for carbon dioxide emissions and 12% for hazardous waste.
Some highlights of Boeing’s work with environmentally progressive technologies include:
The world’s first flight of a commercial airplane powered in part by biofuels, in collaboration with Virgin Atlantic Airways and GE Aviation. Boeing is focused on research for advanced generations of sustainable biofuels using biomass that do not compete with food crops or water resources.
The world’s first straight-and-level flight of a manned airplane powered only by a fuel-cell. The research may benefit secondary aircraft system power use.
Delivery of world-record holding solar cells by Boeing subsidiary Spectrolab Inc., to an Australian customer to power a 154MW power station.
The report also highlights that Boeing is now targeting a further 25% revenue-adjusted reduction of energy use and greenhouse gas emissions by 2012, with similar goals for recycling and hazardous waste.