Sustainability of the Air Cargo Industry

Celine Hourcade, Manager Cargo Industry Management, IATA

Alexandra Jimenez, Manager, Cargo Standards, IATA
Sue Presti, Senior Director of Government Affairs, TIACA
Sebastian Scholte, CEO, Jan de Rijk Logistics, TIACA
William (Bill) Gottleib, Past President, FIATA
Rachael Dillon, Climate Change Policy Manager, British Shippers' Council, GSF


The recommendations from the GACAG Sustainability of the Air Cargo Industry Task Force aims to address a wide range of issues, including: 

  • The significance of the air cargo industry to global trade
  • The disproportionate impact of airport night curfews on the air cargo sector
  • The industry's on-going efforts to reduce its carbon footprint
  • The necessity to promote sustainable alternative fuels
  • The social responsibility of air cargo
  • The need to attract, develop and retain talents in the air cargo industry
Environmental action

The aviation industry has committed to achieve carbon neutral growth by 2020 and 50% reduction by 2050. No other industry has set up such ambitious environmental targets. 
The air freight sector has an enormous role to play if aviation is to meet its environmental targets. Despite the turbulent economic times, there is a genuine desire among the whole air freight supply chain to be greener. It includes:

  • Efforts on transparency with the measurement of air cargo carbon footprint
  • Concrete actions to reduce fuel consumption by reducing weight on board (with e-freight, lightweight ULDs)
  • Larger strategies to modernize fleet, use bio fuels, improve operations

Aviation has a track record in improving fuel consumption, but the message doesn't reach out the air cargo community! We therefore need to:

  • Increase industry engagement and collaboration
  • Communicate better on our actions and achievements through education campaign for the air cargo customers, publication of industry emission factors demonstrating the fuel consumption improvements, development of offsetting program for Cargo, promotion of best practices such as “Lightweight ULDs”
Economic growth

Air cargo is a premium service that needs to be marketed and sold as such. The industry needs to do more of advocacy, education and communication:

  • With governments – to avoid developing restrictive regulations
  • With airlines’ CEOs – to invest in modernizing cargo
  • With airports – to invest more in cargo infrastructures
  • With customers – to limit modal shift


Social responsability

Our industry is at risk if we fail to attract, retain and develop our people. We need to:

  • Increase our training efforts
  • Support and promote diversity
  • Retain & develop the future executives

In addition to training programs, the founding associations launched initiatives to address those issues