"cheap" flights

Our transport is heavily oil-based. What are the alternatives?

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emordnilap
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"cheap" flights

Post by emordnilap »

Norwegian Airlines are to start ‘cheap’ flights from Shannon, Cork, Belfast and Dublin to Providence (112 km from Boston) and Stewart (96 km from New York) soon. Apparently, 5,000 tickets on the scheduled flights were sold almost within hours of launch. We're talking from €69 for a single ticket.

Two friends from the USA recently visited using Aer Lingus and, with extra baggage, ended up paying around $1,000 for the round trip, so you can see the attraction of Norwegian.

I'm a bit of a party pooper when people bring up the subject. 999 out of a thousand people think it's great news that the transatlantic version of Ryanair has stepped in.

I'm that odd one in the thousand, which goes to show how futile being concerned about other species really is. People bring up wild and wonderful excuses to justify their biosphere-wrecking. I hate to lose friends but.
I experience pleasure and pains, and pursue goals in service of them, so I cannot reasonably deny the right of other sentient agents to do the same - Steven Pinker
Lurkalot
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Post by Lurkalot »

I've had a similar conversation before. A friend of a friend recently travelled to the canaries for the day and others have jetted round Europe , several flights for under £100 . I voiced similar concerns but one common answer I get is "short haul flights are much worse than long haul" almost as if those long haul flights somehow produce less emissions. Ok so per passenger miles they do produce more proportionaly although I'm not sure how they stack up as a whole.
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emordnilap
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Post by emordnilap »

The frighteningly humongous subsidies that airlines receive - and have received over decades - are partly to blame.

Add in the selfish I'm-worth-it culture and you're fecked.

Just as I feel like anything 'green' I do is pointless in the face of massive money and universal selfishness, so the other 999 out of 1,000 feel that his or her individual contribution to destroying the biosphere is negligible.
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Post by kenneal - lagger »

Apparently the government's carbon committee have worked out that in order to meet the 2050 carbon reduction targets all building will have to be insulated to reduce their heat loss levels by 100% from the 199- whatever level because we are not going to be able to reduce transport emissions to anywhere near the required level.

I was under the impression that 100% energy reduction was physically impossible unless the buildings weren't heated at all. On empirical evidence I have worked out that somewhere about an 80% saving is worthwhile on a insulated cavity wall house and about 90% on a solid walled house. This is the energetically and materially optimum level to go for. The house would only require minimal heating for maybe two weeks a year and, with warming less than that.

To go from the 90% to 95% would require a doubling of the insulation thickness on the walls from 200mm of PIR/PU foam to 400mm and from 450 of fibrous insulation in the loft to 900! Windows would have to be minimum size for lighting or quadruple glazed. Not really practical at all.
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johnhemming2
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Post by johnhemming2 »

emordnilap wrote:The frighteningly humongous subsidies that airlines receive - and have received over decades - are partly to blame.
I don't personally take the view that not taxing fuel is a "subsidy". It is a differential treatment, understandable in the sense that international air transport would refuel where the fuel is cheapest.

Otherwise I am unaware of anything that could be properly described as a subsidy.
Lurkalot
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Post by Lurkalot »

johnhemming2 wrote: It is a differential treatment, understandable in the sense that international air transport would refuel where the fuel is cheapest.

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Wouldn't an aircraft be limited to refuelling at their destination or are you suggesting jet liners would "shop around"?I really couldn't see a situation where a aircraft flying from , say , New York would divert from Heathrow to Paris or Rome to refuel simply because that fuel is cheaper than in the U.K.
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Post by clv101 »

johnhemming2 wrote:
emordnilap wrote:The frighteningly humongous subsidies that airlines receive - and have received over decades - are partly to blame.
I don't personally take the view that not taxing fuel is a "subsidy". It is a differential treatment, understandable in the sense that international air transport would refuel where the fuel is cheapest.

Otherwise I am unaware of anything that could be properly described as a subsidy.
I'm happy to call it a subsidy. They use energy to provide a transport service. Rail operators, bus operators, taxis and the private motorist all pay taxes on that energy - airlines get a free ride. That's a subsidy relative to other forms of transport in my book.

The logistical issue of refuelling and the legal issues of international taxation agreements are a red herring - the equivalent revenue could to collected effectively by reforming Air Passenger Duty and adding duty to air freight.
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Post by vtsnowedin »

Lurkalot wrote:
johnhemming2 wrote: It is a differential treatment, understandable in the sense that international air transport would refuel where the fuel is cheapest.

.
Wouldn't an aircraft be limited to refuelling at their destination or are you suggesting jet liners would "shop around"?I really couldn't see a situation where a aircraft flying from , say , New York would divert from Heathrow to Paris or Rome to refuel simply because that fuel is cheaper than in the U.K.
I would not expect a jet to divert to another country to save on fuel costs. As most planes fly a circuit they repeat daily I would expect them to top off their tanks at the cheapest place on their schedule and just buy enough at their other stops to give them the proper safety margins to the next location or two. Landing back at the cheapest airport with the minimum exceptable reserve would be the goal. Perhaps there are times when changing the order of where a plane lands makes a difference, say stopping in Dublin Ireland before going on to Paris even though the flight could go to Paris nonstop and such things are certainly thought about in such a competitive industry but getting the most passengers to their destination ASAP probably outweighs most of such options.
I'm not in the industry so am just applying logic from a business point of view so there maybe points to consider I am unaware of.
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Post by PS_RalphW »

I worked in the industry in the nineties. Fuel is very heavy and the flexibility to refuel elsewhere is limited because not much extra fuel could be added before the extra weight consumes more fuel than the airline saves in tax. One unintended side effect of differential taxation would be to increase fuel consumption as airline shop around.
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