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NBAA LETTER TO THE EDITORS The New York Times
Letter as Published
The New York Times
229 West 43rd Street
New York, NY 10036
November 19, 2009
Your story, "Paying More for Flights Eases Guilt, Not Emissions," (Nov. 18) seemed more focused on sensationalism about emissions from small business airplanes than airing the facts.
In truth, emissions from any type of aviation account for only two percent of all carbon emissions, with emissions from business aviation making up one half of one percent of aviation emissions globally. Also missing from your story is the fact that these airplanes have a record of continuous improvement on emissions. Thanks to ongoing research and development of fuel-efficient engines and other technologies, these aircraft are among the most fuel-efficient anywhere. This record of progress – which has happened without regulation – means that turbine engines today are, on average, 30-percent more fuel efficient than those certified thirty years ago.
Furthermore, although a source in your story inferred that businesses using their own airplanes could simply switch to airline travel for transportation, that's not feasible in many cases, because many businesses are located in small and mid-sized towns with little or no airline service – in other words, the business airplane is the only option available.
It's unfortunate that your story left out these facts, and instead provided readers with a skewed view of the environmental impact from the small airplanes thousands of U.S. businesses rely on to be more efficient, productive and successful.
President and CEO
National Business Aviation Association