Cardiff Metropolitan University
Sher2021_Article_UnprecedentedImpactsOfAviation.pdf (3.31 MB)

Unprecedented Impacts of Aviation Emissions on Global Environmental and Climate Change Scenario

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journal contribution
posted on 2022-03-14, 12:17 authored by Farooq Sher, David Raore, Jiří Jaromír Klemeš, Piyya Muhammad Rafi‑ul‑Shan, Martin Khzouz, Kristina Marintseva, Omid Razmkhah
There has been a continuously growing trend in international commercial air traffic, with the exception of COVID-19 crises; however, after the recovery, the trend is expected to even sharpen. The consequences of released emissions and by-products in the environment range from human health hazards, low air quality and global warming. This study is aimed to investigate the role of aviation emissions in global warming. For this purpose, data on different variables including global air traffic and growth rate, air traffic in different continents, total global CO2 emissions of different airlines, direct and indirect emissions, air traffic in various UK airports and fuel-efficient aircraft was collected from various sources like EU member states, Statista, Eurostat, IATA, CAA and EUROCONTROL. The results indicated that in 2019, commercial airlines carried over 4.5 × 109 passengers on scheduled flights. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the global number of passengers was reduced to 1.8 × 109, representing around a 60% reduction in air traffic. Germany was the largest contributor to greenhouse gas (GHG) from the EU, releasing 927 kt of emissions in 3 years. In the UK, Heathrow airport had the highest number of passengers in 2019 with over 80 million, and the study of monthly aircraft movement revealed that Heathrow Airport also had the highest number of EU and International flights, while Edinburgh had the domestic flights in 2018. These research findings could be beneficial for airlines, policymakers and governments targeting the reduction of aircraft emissions.


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Current Pollution Reports




  • VoR (Version of Record)


Sher, F., Raore, D., Klemeš, J.J., Rafi-ul-Shan, P.M., Khzouz, M., Marintseva, K. and Razmkhah, O. (2021) Unprecedented Impacts of Aviation Emissions on Global Environmental and Climate Change Scenario. Current Pollution Reports, pp.1-16. doi:10.1007/s40726-021-00206-3

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Cardiff Met Affiliation

  • Cardiff School of Management

Cardiff Met Authors

Piyya Muhammad Rafi‑ul‑Shan

Cardiff Met Research Centre/Group

  • Welsh Centre for Business and Management Research

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  • © The Authors


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