True, private jets are mostly the rarified ride of rock stars and pro athletes, but they are also a growing share of air travel. How can such small planes be damaging the environment? Myles explores the data on how carbon dioxide (CO 2) emissions from private jets affect climate change. It's more than you think, especially if you look at it per trip or per passenger. Some European countries want to ban private jets completely. Others advocate for heavily taxing private jet setters. What do you think? Watch and join the discussion: Should private jets be banned?
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What causes climate change?
Since the Industrial Revolution, we’ve been burning more and more fossil fuels like gas for cars, or natural gas and coal for electricity. And all this releases tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) into the atmosphere, which is a problem because CO2 is a “greenhouse gas.” Greenhouse gases are molecules that trap heat in the atmosphere, which leads to an overall warming effect on the planet. CO2 isn’t the ONLY greenhouse gas, there’s methane, nitrous oxide, and some others in the mix. AND burning fossil fuels isn’t the only way greenhouse gasses are released into the atmosphere. But CO2 currently accounts for the greatest warming. And since the late 1800s when global average temperatures have increased by about 1 degree Celsius. Overall, this warming has a huge impact on the climate causing things like more severe droughts, water scarcity, wildfires, floods, melting of polar ice, and sea level rise. If we want to keep climate change from getting worse, we need to reduce our CO2 emissions.
How much carbon dioxide do private jets emit?