Modern fleet consumes only 4.8 litres per 100 kilometres
Lufthansa attained one of its principal environmental aims last year by further reducing fuel burn per passenger. In its new Environmental Report “Balance 1999/2000”, the Aviation Group gives account of a host of measures taken in its diverse business areas to protect nature and the earth`s resources.
Last year the 333 aircraft in the Group`s fleet consumed only 4.8 litres to transport one passenger 100 kilometres. This lowered specific fuel consumption by a further 0.1 litres, again realising Lufthansa`s goal of cutting the fuel burn by a yearly 0.1 litres.
Fuel efficiency improved substantially. Traffic growth at the passenger airlines in the Group up by 12.7 per cent (to more than 105 billion passenger-kilometres) and in the cargo business up by 10.3 per cent (to 16.15 billion tonne-kilometres) outpaced the increase of 9.7 per cent (5.45 million tonnes) in fuel consumption. This positive trend has persisted for some time: In the last nine years, specific fuel consumption in the passenger fleets has been cut (in terms of litres per 100 kilometres) by 20 per cent.
Lufthansa German Airlines, the autonomous passenger business unit in the Group made immense strides: Fuel burn in the fleet was down by 1.3 per cent per cent to 5.1 litres per 100 passenger-kilometres. Fuel efficiency has improved steadily since 1991: Meantime the fleet is 21.6 per cent more thrifty. While traffic in the period has grown by 95.8 per cent, per-passenger fuel consumption has increased by only 53.6 per cent. Given those figures on fuel consumption and attendant CO2 emissions, almost half that traffic growth was accomplished without any additional strain on the environment - thanks to new aircraft, higher capacity utilisation and fuel-saving flight procedures. Flying with Lufthansa is in fact is entirely more fuel-thrifty and cleaner.
Lufthansa Chairman Jürgen Weber is highly satisfied with the results of the eco-audit. But in the foreword to the Annual Environmental Report, he notes critically “that we witnessed unnecessary environmental pollution due to the dramatic increase in the incidence of flight delays caused by bottlenecks in European air traffic control. As a result of that, our passenger fleets consumed an additional 100,000 tonnes of kerosene.” The environment was thereby additionally burdened with more than 300,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide.
As with fuel consumption, pollutant emission from companies in the Lufthansa Group remained well below the growth in air traffic. Although, in absolute terms, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions rose by 9.7 per cent (to 17.2 million tonnes), emission of nitric oxides (NO x) by 8.7 per cent (to about 78,600 tonnes) and of carbon monoxide by 3.7 per cent (to about 13,700 tonnes), the emission of unburnt hydrocarbons (UHCs) was reduced by 1.6 per cent to 2,980 tonnes. Specific fuel consumption, however, was down again: Per passenger-kilometre, Lufthansa aircraft generated 1.8 per cent less carbon dioxide, 2.0 per cent fewer nitric oxides, 7.3 per cent less carbon monoxide and as much as 15 per cent fewer unburnt hydrocarbons.
Lufthansa has set itself a long-term goal geared to the targets spelt out at the UN Environment Conference in Kyoto: Specific fuel consumption is to be cut (from the level in 1991) by 30 per cent by 2008 and by 35 per cent by 2012. The average fuel burn of the Group fleet ought then to be down to 4 litres per 100 passenger-kilometres. The Condor holiday carrier in the Group is already operating with “three-litre aircraft”. The modern jets (average age 5 years) in the holiday airline`s fleet consume a mere 3.4 litres per 100 kilometres.