Airplane Pollution vs. Car Pollution

Eco-friendly charter flights

One common concern that people often have when they travel is how much pollution their preferred mode of transportation is causing. Because planes are big and powerful, it can be easy to misinterpret just how much air pollution they cause, and many people mistakenly assume that a long road trip will be less damaging to the environment.  

When it comes to reducing your carbon footprint, there are many options to consider. One of the most efficient is choosing to charter a private plane instead of driving yourself. Here’s why: 

How problematic is car pollution?

The negative impacts of car pollution are widespread. The emissions from cars, which include carbon dioxide and greenhouse gasses, lead to the depletion of the ozone layer, which protects our planet from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation. The unburnt hydrocarbons and other chemicals in car exhausts produce air pollution and acid rain, contributing to respiratory diseases, such as asthma, emphysema, and bronchitis. 

It also has a negative effect on buildings and other objects that are subjected to road salt because it deteriorates metal and corrodes paint. In addition, it pollutes water sources with oil and chemicals from the roadways.

Car pollution when traveling

Reducing the impact of car pollution

Despite all this, it’s unrealistic to think that we can completely eliminate the need to drive. However, even if you do use a car for your main mode of transportation in your everyday life, there are ways to reduce the negative impact of car pollution:

  • Getting regular vehicle maintenance is important and can help reduce emissions by up to 30 percent.
  • If you have the opportunity, try to carpool when possible. Carpooling reduces car usage and, therefore, reduces pollution.
  • Driving at moderate speeds greatly reduces carbon monoxide emissions.
  • Reducing vehicle idling saves fuel and reduces air pollution 
  • Vehicles can be outfitted with high mileage tires that reduce rolling resistance and help the car to use less gas.  
  • Use recycled motor oil in your car 
  • For short distances, avoid car pollution altogether, by walking or biking when possible.

Flying can actually help you reduce your carbon footprint

When it comes to traveling, particularly long distances, driving can actually have a more harmful impact on the environment than flying in certain cases. This may seem surprising at first: after all, airplanes use a lot of fuel compared to other means of transportation. But as scientists and researchers work hard to design more efficient planes that burn less fuel, the solution to reducing air pollution from long-distance trips has become clear: flying private. 

Private planes use fewer resources than a commercial flight

Aircraft manufacturers are constantly looking for ways to make planes lighter and more aerodynamic; in short, they’re trying to use less fuel. For example, the Solar Impulse 2 plane took off for its around-the-world journey in 2015 with no engine (and only about 23 miles of battery power). Even commercial airlines are in on the frugality trend, with some fleets that use LED lights for illumination or recycled aluminum from beverage cans.

Private planes mostly use jet fuel

If you’ve ever watched a private jet take off, you may have noticed something about the fuel it uses based on the sound (or lack thereof). That’s because private jets run on jet fuel, not kerosene, like more traditional (and commercial) airplanes run on.

The reason why? Kerosene is heavier than air, which means it doesn’t evaporate as quickly and tends to accumulate at the bottom of tanks, which can lead to fires or even explosions. Jet fuel is airier, so it burns more efficiently and is better for the environment. 

Private planes burn less fuel than commercial planes

If you’re looking for an excuse to treat yourself (and lower your carbon footprint in the process), this would be a good place to start. Data shows that private planes burn less fuel than commercial planes, even if they’re carrying fewer passengers. That’s because the engines are newer and more powerful, so they use less fuel per hour in the air.

Reducing your carbon footprint

Charter a private flight today

While driving may seem like the more environmentally friendly option, when you compare the pollution levels of private planes to cars, it is clear that chartering a private plane is the better choice for the environment. Not only can chartering a private plane be more eco-friendly than driving for short distances, but it is also a particularly environmentally-friendly option when it comes to those longer journeys, such as cross-country trips. If you’re traveling with a large group and you’ll be driving in multiple vehicles, it is also important to consider your transportation options if you have concerns about the environment. With a private plane, you can all share the same mode of transportation, rather than being split up in numerous vehicles.

Contact us today to learn more about chartering a private flight for your upcoming trip. If you are looking for a more sustainable way to travel in the long term, enroll in our Jet Membership program, and let us show you how easy and affordable it can be to fly privately.