In July 2018, two Norwegian officials took off from the Oslo airport in an aircraft, soared around the city for a few minutes, and safely landed to cheers from media and onlookers. An underwhelming feat to those not in the know, but what had just taken place was in fact a giant step forward for the battle against climate change — the flight took place in an electric-powered plane, the Alpha Electro G2, and signaled the official launch of an ambitious goal by a country already leading the world in electric vehicle use.
As reported by TechCrunch in July 2018, aviation currently accounts for four percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. With this flight, Norway announced plans to do their part to cut into that number and fly all short-haul flights from its airports on electric planes by 2040. While current models of the Alpha Electro G2 aircraft only seat two people, multiple companies around the world are working on plans to develop commercial-ready electric aircrafts. No commercial airplanes are currently in the production stages of development, but the officials believe they will be ready in time to be implemented prior the the self-imposed 2040 deadline.
Norwegian officials believe the goal is possible due to the layout of the country’s airports. Commercial airports are spread across the country but the vast majority connect via short flights on smaller aircrafts, making it a viable step towards the country’s goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
The green revolution boosts its impact on global transportation year over year, with more than 3.2 million electric vehicles on the road worldwide in 2017. In the meantime, those wishing to cut down on emissions while flying will have to take matters into their own hands.