Pallets and nets offer cost savings, says expert

Amsafe Bridport director outlines weight reduction opportunities.
BA CEO Willie Walsh has set an ambitious target to cut CO2 emissions by 50% by 2050
BA CEO Willie Walsh has set an ambitious target to cut CO2 emissions by 50% by 2050

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As the ‘green’ trend becomes part of a commercial airlines’ mainstream policy, cargo carriers are also coming under increasing pressure to reduce their carbon footprint.

But while airlines in the region continue to take delivery of modern aircraft, this only goes some way to reducing fuel use.

Abu Dhabi-based, Etihad Airways has launched the V2500 SelectOne engine in the Gulf region. It has lower fuel burn, CO2 emissions and operating costs.

Recently, British Airways pledged to cut its net CO2 by a whopping 50% by 2050. To date, this is the most environmentally conscious target set by any global airline and, if achieved, will have seen the airline reduce its net carbon output from 16 million tonnes in 2005 to eight million by mid-century.

Last year, Dubai-based carrier, Emirates began flying its eco-efficient Airbus A380 and also operates a global staff awareness campaign.

But carriers operating in the cargo sector are being urged to look at what they are loading into their aircraft in order to achieve lower fuel use and thus lower costs.

Recent advances in containers have seen light-weight textiles replace container doors and panels.

AmSafe Bridport director Asia Ian Kentfield, said: “It’s time they [airlines] woke up to the fact that substantial cost savings can be made if they switch to using pallets and nets.

“A pallet and net can restrain the same load as a container but being lighter, can do so far more cost-effectively.”

Kentfield explained that fuel cost savings apart, replacing containers with pallets equates to lower purchase prices, reduced repair, maintenance and storage costs, and no transport costs to return empty containers.

“These almost certainly are not the complete solution but serious consideration of investment for long-term solutions will change the way we approach weight reduction opportunities,” Kentfield added.

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