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Assessment 1- Individual Essay

Aviation Manufacturers and their Contribution to Environmental Protection

In recent decades, aviation manufacturers have been one of the most effective drivers of reducing the impact of aviation on the environment. This has enabled the global aviation industry to grow more sustainable and minimize the environmental footprint of the industry. For this assessment, you are to choose engine manufacturer or MRO organisation. You are to critically evaluation ions approach to sustainable aviation in the form of an essay. You should evaluate how the aviation organisation has implemented environmental management systems (EMSs). The essay should include examples of policies, plans and initiatives, a discussion on how these are implemented and monitored and the role of management in ensuring continuous improvement.

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The present report is based on the sustainable aviation approach of an aircraft manufacturing company, Airbus. It is one of the leading international aircraft manufacturing company, which deals with designing, assembling, and distributing aerospace products and services to customers worldwide. Headquarter of Airbus is located at Leiden, Netherlands, main office is situated in Toulouse, France; whereas the operational and servicing units are spread across various nations. The company focuses on customer satisfaction, manufacturing efficiency, and technological leadership which made it excel in the air transport and aviation industry.

Scope of this report

In this report, we will discuss the initiatives and measures adopted by Airbus Company, in order to minimize the impact on environment. First, we will briefly discuss the company's mission in conjunction to sustainability for environmental issues. Next we will focus on the implemented environmental management system, by taking reference from peer-reviewed sources. Successive discussion will highlight the implemented policies and measures. This include the key steps taken by the company to minimize the environmental impact. Finally, a summary of the analysis will be provided to conclude this assignment.

How company mission is sustaining environmental issues: A brief

It aims to supply jetliners that are suitable according to the market's requirements, along with providing the best quality of service. Under its modern and comprehensive product line, it has received order of 18000 from all around the globe, which comprises seats from 100 to more than 600 (Petrescu, Aversa, and Akash 2017). The company believes that environmental values constitute a key part of its marketing strategy. Airbus uses the latest technologies for maximizing the benefits of products and services, minimizing the adverse effect of their manufacturing and operation on the environment. To achieve sustainable aviation, the company has taken a number of initiates in different perspectives like increased efficiency with better aircraft technology, effective management of air traffic, and carbon offset program for international aviation (Goupil, Urbano, and Tourneret 2016).

Environmental management systems for sustainable aviation

Sustainable aviation is defined as a long-term strategy that aims at setting out collective approach. The objectives in this context is oriented towards managing the challenge of achieving a smarter, cleaner, and quieter future of the aviation industry. The sustainable development goals of Airbus is based on responsible consumption and production and climate change (Novelo and Igie 2019). According to, responsible consumption and production goals, Airbus believes that innovation and eco-efficiency are the key drivers for reducing environmental footprint, accomplishing current as well as future environmental challenges and achieving sustainable economic development. Similarly to monitor climate change and improve environmental performance the company has designed specific satellites. Airbus sets a strong engagement for reducing its impact on the environment and incorporating a life cycle perspective sustainable growth and development (Stark 2015). Furthermore, it also assures the effectiveness of its Environmental Management System (EMS) and accounts for its compliance responsibilities (Teoh, and Khoo 2016).

For the past 50 years, the aviation manufacturing company has reduced CO2 emissions and fuel burn per seat/kilometer by an amount of more than 80% (Marrinan, Becker, and Murrow 2017). Similarly, it has also reduced NOx emissions and noise production by 90% and 75% respectively (Shao, Feng, and Li 2018). In context to reduce environmental footprint on a global level, the company is already abiding by the Paris agreement for maintaining the global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius above the industrial levels (McLachlan 2018). The cabin waste management system of Airbus aims at improved waste separation, improved storage, include compaction and improved recycling rates. The environmental performance of Airbus aircraft is 1.5% increment in fuel efficiency in each year since 2009 to 2020, with the help of its latest generation aircraft and fleet all around the world (Campos, de Melo Heizen, and Verdinelli 2015). The partners and stakeholders involved in the sustainable aviation engagement program of Airbus are British Airways, KLM, NATS, TARMAC aerospace, CATHAY PACIFIC, Royal Dutch airlines, Heathrow, and SkyNRG (Lohmann, and Spasojevic 2018). Note that the environmental management in this context are aimed towards reducing carbon footprint, as a part of sustainable actions.

With the introduction of A350 XWB, the environmental performance of Airbus has enhanced to a greater extent (Arista, and Falgarone 2017). This aircraft is a combination of advanced technologies, aerodynamics, weight-efficient airframe, and high-performing engine, which makes it more efficient than the aircraft of previous generations. This new version of aircraft has 25% less CO2 emissions, whereas the NOx emission is above 31% below the ICAO CAEP* /6 industry standard (Budd, and Suau-Sanchez 2016). In addition to this, the noise level of this aircraft has been lowered up to 21.4 EPNdB** margin of chapter 4 certification standard of ICAO.

Implementation of policies

With strong support and commitment towards eco-efficiency, Airbus China Beijing and Airbus Americas campus have been certified with ISO 14001 standard for the Environmental Management systems (EMS). In January 2007, the company became the first aerospace firm in the world to achieve ISO 14001 environmental certification for the "full life-cycle approach". The company is also associated with the Paris agreement, and according to it, the aviation sector has to implement and design a low carbon technology strategy with respect to the climate protection movement. Abiding by this agreement, Airbus managed to attain a global temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius and above the pre-industrial levels. The sustainable aviation engagement program of the company is based on governmental responsibilities, regulation compliance, long-term partnership, sustainable growth, and risk and opportunities anticipation. The sustainable program looks for opportunities to optimize the performance of its latest generation aircraft and reduce fuel burn as well as noise production in aircraft operation. Periodic maintenance of engine, fuel testing, and replacement of older parts are also key steps included in this scope that contributes significantly in reducing the environmental impact. The program also emphasizes on ATAG strategy for minimizing CO2 emission and designing a conceptual framework for collaboration with airline customers (Gill 2016). It has also been certified for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) in the U.S. final assembly line (Yanto, and Liem 2017).

Airbus is also dedicated to the development of Air Traffic Management (ATM) on a global scale with the help of Airbus NavBlue (Cansino, and Román 2017). For operational efficiencies, it prefers direct routings which ultimately reduces 10% aircraft fuel consumption and also a significant reduction in noise and CO2 emission. It has also formed a partnership named as STARLING along with the Forest Trust and StarVision. The partnership offers expert knowledge from both organizations towards building a unique satellite monitoring service we can fight against global warming from the space. The satellite delivers images regarding deforestation which thereby helps to reduce deforestation with the involvement of different nations and companies.

The activities of Airbus is confined under five main areas for reducing environmental impact across the company's global manufacturing and operation sites.

• Infrastructure improvement and management projects are focused on the activities related to reducing energy consumption and CO2 emission.

• For manufacturing purposes, it encourages reusing and recycling of waste materials.

• In context to air emissions, it tries to mitigate the issue from the manufacturing site itself along with optimizing product use. In conjunction with this, and also produces low or zero volatile organic compound (VOC) products (Vieira, Vieira, and Chang Chain 2017).

• The company also encourages minimum water consumption and applies effective measures for its reuse.

• In context to supply chain, it prefers to improve visibility on the environmental risk through effective partnership at the industrial level (Lunt, Ball, and Kaladgew 2015).

In the aircraft manufacturing process, Airbus takes special concern towards surface treatment, paints, sealants, flame retardants technology, and fire protection. Over 1700 substances used in the manufacturing process are subjected to strict regulatory control. This include periodic replacement, testing for fuel efficiency, and retirement of parts after tentative date. In this regard, 20 technologies comprising of chromates and 80% of sealants are planned to be replaced. The different departments responsible for effective operational management include engineering, research and technology, manufacturing, health and safety, procurement, environmental affairs, programmes, and customer services. Airbus tracks, registers, assesses and clears the regulated substances. It also works on the quality checks of alternatives or substitutions to be used in service activities. It is fully committed while working with its suppliers within assigned law and regulation, as well as maintaining the quality, performance and safety standards (Graver, and Rutherford 2018).


Currently, Airbus is working with the aeronautics industry for promoting the EMS. It is committed to preserving both the environment as well as human health by minimizing the adverse effect of its products, services, and activities. A cross-functional team of efficient members represents all aircraft programs and major functions to be executed effectively (Bodily, Lichtendahl Jr, and Bodily 2017). In summary, Airbus is focused on developing innovation in its work procedure to mitigate the economic, social as well as economic challenges. Hence, the company and the associated stakeholders in the value chain should work in mutually and collectively for sustainable aviation.

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