Industry expert and Chief Executive Officer, Aglo Limited, Mr Tayo Ojuri, has said that there is the need for emission testing of aircraft engines in Nigeria.
Speaking with Ecoscope, the aviation consultant with special emphasis on airport operations and management noted that although the newly adopted global market-based measure (GMBM) to control CO2 emissions from international aviation announced by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) may not be applicable to Nigeria, it is however, important to address other environmental issues faced by the sector.
More than 2,200 delegates from ICAO’s Member States, non-Member States and observers, as well as other stakeholders, were at the recently held Plenary Session of the United Nations (UN) aviation agency’s 39th Assembly, where an historic agreement was reached to offset CO2 emissions from international flights and a comprehensive roadmap for the sustainable future of international aviation was set.
Ojuri noted that although this applies to the legacy airlines of this world because they have higher revenue tonne per kilometre (RPK), which is a measure of the tonne of load earned per kilometre, Nigeria on the other hand, also has its share of challenges.
“We may be excluded from the ICAO’s Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) based on our volume, because a section says that it applies to those that have above 0. 5 per cent RPK, which are the legacy airlines of this world. Many of the airlines in Nigeria do not carry a lot of passengers; so in short, they do not fall into that category.
“However, aviation impacts on the environment, from the Nigerian perspective, what we should be looking at is to ensure that there is emission testing of airline engines. Also, another aspect that should be looked into is the disposal of oil and lubricant, because while we are trying to cut down air pollution, we should also look at other areas, because the environment is the air as well as the waterways and the land.
“So there is need to address the disposal of the oil, lubricant and the grease used in maintaining the aircrafts when they take off and land. Where is it being disposed to?
“One that is really close to my heart is the part of embracing leadership in energy and environmental designs of our airports, because whenever it is hot and sunny, the heat makes the terminal really uncomfortable and hot. So when there is a glass which is highly efficient and environmentally designed, this will bounce the rate of the heat away from the airport and make it cooler and also help the environment.
“There is also a need to address the ultimate source of energy for our aviation sector. What efforts are we making to ensure that clean energy is used, because aviation and particularly the airports and airlines use a lot of energy in their operations. An airport runs for 24 hours, so finding an ultimate source of clean energy will actually help to improve the environment,” he said.
Speaking at the ICAO meeting, ICAO Council President, Dr Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu said “It has taken a great deal of effort and understanding to reach this stage, and I want to applaud the spirit of consensus and compromise demonstrated by our Member States, industry and civil society.
“We now have practical agreement and consensus on this issue backed by a large number of States who will voluntarily participate in the GMBM – and from its outset. This will permit the CORSIA to serve as a positive and sustainable contributor to global greenhouse gas emissions reduction.”
ICAO’s CORSIA is designed to complement the basket of mitigation measures the air transport community is already pursuing to reduce CO2 emissions from international aviation. These include technical and operational improvements and advances in the production and use of sustainable alternative fuels for aviation.