Fuel tankering in European skies: economic benefits and environmental impact

Using exclusive EUROCONTROL aviation data, our ad hoc Aviation Intelligence Unit has embarked on a series of thought-provoking papers for industry leaders and policy-makers.

The first of these takes a look at “fuel tankering”, the practice whereby some aircraft carry more fuel than required to reach their destination in order to reduce the need to refuel, or avoid refuelling altogether, at that destination.

The paper assesses the prevalence of fuel tankering in Europe’s busy skies, estimates the magnitude of economic benefits that it brings to airlines, and sets that against the increased fuel consumption and CO2 emissions that result from aircraft carrying more fuel than necessary for that flight, using EUROCONTROL’s BADA (Base of Aircraft Data) models to make our simulations.

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Fuel tankering in European skies: economic benefits and environmental impact