Davos says it is focusing on the climate crisis, but its billionaires and world leaders are still arriving on private jets [Business Insider Australia, 21/01/20]
Pictured above: Passenger jets are parked at the Swiss Airforce base in Duebendorf, which is used by those travelling to the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in January 2016. Photo: REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann
- The World Economic Forum made the idea of a sustainable world the key theme for this year’s event Davos, Switzerland.
- But the financial, political, and celebrity elites that travel to the event will largely continue to travel by private jet, which is hugely damaging to the environment.
- The WEF says it offsets the carbon emitted from flights by funding emissions-reducing projects, but this practice does not stop the carbon entering the atmosphere.
- Swedish teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg will address the forum again, after she last year stunned global leaders by saying that many of them likely profit from sacrificing the environment.
- The WEF says it has taken other steps, including electric cars, monitoring food waste, and using renewable electricity.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
The World Economic Forum said on Monday, one day before the event kicks off in Davos, Switzerland, that: “The climate crisis is going to be one of the dominant themes this week.”
Its website prominently features Swedish teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg, who is due to appear this year after criticising world leaders and urged them to act at last year’s event.
“How to Save the Planet” is one of the seven “key” themes up for discussion.
And the overall theme of this year’s event is “Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World.”
But as the world’s financial elite, political leaders, and celebrities descend on the small town, the question is whether their transport choices can at all work with what the event – and many of those leaders – say they want to achieve for the planet.
The World Economic Forum recorded more than 600 plane journeys that can be attributed to Davos in 2019 – a figure that does not “take into account public figures such as presidents and prime ministers.”
“There were around 60 of these but they tend to use military planes and land at a nearby military base, which makes it impossible to get flight numbers,” Davos said.
Aviation is expected to contribute to 22% of the world’s carbon emissions by 2050 .
World leaders, business leaders, and world-famous personalities are largely unlikely to copy Thunberg and take the train, as she did last year.