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Hail Thomas Minder!


In this time of looming ecological disaster, I think it’s time we recognize and praise those who have the balls to put forward actual solutions to tackle our irresponsible behaviors, without compromising, regardless of established facts and without heeding the futile excuses opponants might come up with.

Hail Thomas Minder!
At last a courageous, honnest and sensible politician!

After his successful fight against corporate rip-off salaries, Mr Minder now valiantly embarks on a crusade against those individuals who fly private aircrafts and produce CO2 for their sole pleasure, comfort and/or display of wealth.

Thanks to his latest and outstanding proposition as part of the debates on the new (swiss) law on CO2, these nefarious people time is now coming to an end! By taxing 500.- swiss francs on every flight from “people who are traveling by aircraft or private jet, which is in their private possession”, we will undoubtedly stop this egoistical and useless habit, benefitting no one else than its perpetrators and contributing to large amount - 0.05% - of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions (as per statistics below).

If only we could see more of such uncompromising and thoroughly thought-of initiatives… we might actually stand a chance!

I’m but a midly educated nobody whose poorly articulated thoughts cannot match the audacity and wisdom of truly bold and capable political actors such as Mr Minder. But should such faithful representative of our democracy stumble upon those words, I would urge her or him to consider:

Post Scriptum: there might be some inconsistencies in the way I computed the ratios mentioned in the above paragraphs; but bear with me: what matters are intentions and their symbolic significance, not facts!

Some aviation statistics

Despite its official statistics being desperately hard to obtain - the Internal Energy Agency (IEA) statistics are worth several hundred euros per document [!…] - your faithful servant managed to get hold of its free 2008 report for you to download.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is more open about its analysis, with its 5th assessment report (AR5) being readily available for download by anyone, as are the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) CO2 emissions report and facts sheet. Shortly put: 14% of worlwide greenhouse gas emissions come from the transport sector (AR5, p.47), ~17% of which from aviation (~2.4% in total, ICCT).

Detailed statistics for the transport sector are publicly available from the European Environment Agency (EEA) greenhouse gas emissions from transport indicators. Shortly put: 27% of european greenhouse gas emissions come from the transport sector, 13.3% of which from aviation (3.6% in total).

Finally the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) general aviation statistics and report allow to narrow down the part of General Aviation (GA) - aka. privately owned planes - based on fuel consumption (compared to commercial aviation latest statistics). Shortly put: General Aviation represents ~2% of worldwide aviation fuel consumption, ~10% of which for small piston engine - AVGAS-powered - aircrafts (~0.2% of the entire aviation sector).

Disclaimer (about the author)

I’m a private plane and glider pilot who failed to secure a career in aviation - his childhood dream - and flies privately, club owned (AVGAS-powered) planes 20-odd hours per year, thus contributing to 0.005% of worldwide greenhouse gas emissions (what an asshole!!!).