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Flights to Lyon Airport show potential for greening aviation


Lyon-Saint Exupéry Airport today hosted five European flights that between them used a combination of new innovative technologies, fuels and air navigation procedures designed to minimise their carbon emissions.

According to ACI Europe, today’s actions show that the potential to transform the environmental impact of the aviation industry exists today.

The flights – from Amsterdam, Barcelona, Bucharest, Frankfurt and Lisbon – arrived this afternoon on the occasion of the European Commission’s ‘Connecting Europe Days’ event.

Between them, they used the following measures:

• Environmentally optimised routings – By taking advantage of airspace normally reserved for the military and by using improved vertical and lateral profiles, new, more direct routings are made possible, improving trajectories and descents into Lyon Airport’s approach airspace.

• Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAFs): Airlines including Air France, easyJet, KLM, Lufthansa, Transavia and Vueling are each uplifting 30% SAF on a total of ten flights departing from Lyon, resulting in a CO2 emissions reduction of 27% per flight compared to conventional fuel use.

• Carbon neutral airport operations and infrastructure – Lyon Airport is deploying the most energy-efficient operational know-how and solutions for turnaround of these aircraft.

Indeed, the host airport is part of VINCI Airports’ environmental strategy, having already achieved carbon neutrality with compensation in 2017 within Airport Carbon Accreditation.

It is now on course to become the first commercial airport in France to reach net zero CO2 emissions by 2026 within the scope of its business.

And Lyon Airport is also a pilot for VINCI Airports’ plan to kickstart hydrogen use at airports to accommodate hydrogen-powered aircraft as early as 2023, in partnership with Airbus and Air Liquide.

This coordinated action has shown what can be achieved through the application of measures set out in the Destination 2050 Roadmap, an initiative of the five leading European aviation associations to identify a pathway for their sector to reach the EU’s climate goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

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