How Guilty Should You Feel About Flying? [New York Times, 17/10/19]
The Swedes call it “flygskam,” or “flying shame,” the movement that encourages people to stop taking flights to lower their carbon footprints.
But should most Americans really be ashamed of getting on a plane to see grandma this holiday season?
The short answer: Probably not. If your flights are purely a luxury, though, that’s another matter.
A small group of frequent fliers, 12 percent of Americans who make more than six round trips by air a year, are responsible for two-thirds of all air travel and, by extension, two-thirds of aviation emissions, according to a new analysis by the International Council on Clean Transportation, a nonprofit research group.
Each of these travelers, on average, emits more than 3 tons of carbon dioxide per year, a substantial amount, particularly by global standards. And the most frequent fliers, those who take more than 9 round trips per year, emit the highest share.