Carbon Estimation and Offsets for U.S. University Aviation Programs

Johnson, Mary E.; Gonzalez, Alan; Kozak, Brian; Sperlak, Lauren
March 2013
Collegiate Aviation Review;Spring2013, Vol. 31 Issue 1, p40
Academic Journal
Aviation activities produce carbon. The International Civil Aviation Organization has included a carbon calculator on its website as a way to estimate a passenger's carbon footprint. United Airlines, Delta Airlines and British Airways are three airlines that offer customers ways to offset the carbon emissions generated by their air travel. University flight programs also generate carbon emissions. While not required in the United States at this time, forward-thinking companies and universities are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint by reducing or offsetting emissions created by combustion of fuels. This paper discusses aviation fuel emissions, examines the carbon footprint of a university flight program, identifies ways to offset the carbon, and explores the use of trees to offset the carbon generated by flight operations. In addition, this paper presents a methodology for estimating the carbon footprint for the fuel used in a university flight training program and for estimating the number of trees to offset aviation emissions.


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