Leading climate scientists have told the government that a “severe clampdown” on air travel will be necessary for the UK government to meet its CO2 reduction targets.

Researchers from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change believe that the number of flights will have to be frozen at today’s levels or even lower to avoid catastrophic warming.

Importantly, the researchers believe that moves by the aviation industry to develop greener fuels and more efficient aircraft will come into operation too late to slash carbon dioxide emissions by the target of 60% by 2050.

The aviation industry is rapidly becoming a major contributor to global warming. Over the past 30 years, air passengers in Britain have increased fivefold. While aviation now emits only 7% of the carbon dioxide emissions released by Britain’s private vehicles, it is on course to be an equal greenhouse gas emitter by 2012.

Poor Richard Branson – seems his multi-billion initiative on alternative fuels that will supposedly allow us to carry on flying is not a panacea after all. People will just have to stop flying. Period. Pity his PR people haven’t told him that.

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