Lufthansa Cargo leads transformation course of airfreight industry

Published: Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Frankfurt, Germany— On Logistics Day, Lufthansa Cargo once again appeals to aviation’s potential for change saying air freight is indispensable to move goods intended for global trade as well as time-sensitive shipments like humanitarian aid supplies to help people in conflict zones or in times of tragedy like earthquakes, major floods, wildfires, among others.

Sustainable developments are driving the future of air freight logistics. And even though there is still a long way to go before climate protection goals are achieved, the industry is already doing a lot.

“Air freight is indispensable.But we need sustainable change if we want to reduce the carbon footprint. To this end, we have set ourselves ambitious goals, and we see in practice that efficient flying, e.g., by using sustainable fuels, works. But to make a difference in terms of reducing emissions overall, the entire air freight logistics industry must follow suit. To this end, current developments must be used throughout the industry and future technologies must be recognized in good time,” explains Brian Kowalke, Environmental Manager at Lufthansa Cargo.

Lufthansa Cargo’s efforts clearly show that climate protection can also be successfully implemented in airfreight logistics. By 2030 at the latest, the company aims to halve its carbon footprint compared to 2019 and to be completely CO2-neutral by 2050.

In this regard, Lufthansa Cargo plays a pioneering role within the industry, as can be seen, among other things, in the implementation of the EU regulation ReFuelEU: In the new ReFuelEU Aviation Regulation, the EU Commission has defined a binding quota of renewable fuels for aviation.

By 2025, for example, at least two percent and by 2030 at least five percent of SAF must be blended. Compared to fossil fuels, SAF reduce CO2 emissions by up to 80 percent. Today, Lufthansa Cargo is already scratching at the set first mark of two percent: In 2022, the SAF share in the fuel consumption of Lufthansa Cargo freighter aircraft was already 1.8 percent. Together with its partner DB Schenker, the company also offers the only regular full-charter freighter connection with 100 percent non-fossil fuel.

As a forward-looking company, Lufthansa Cargo invests not only in renewable fuels but also continuously in the modernization of its fleet and operates the most fuel-efficient cargo aircraft on the market.

To further improve the fleet’s fuel efficiency, the company relies on new technologies such as AeroSHARK, a special surface film that reduces the aircraft’s frictional resistance. Extrapolated to Lufthansa Cargo’s entire 777 fleet, this alone can save approximately 13,000 tons of CO2 emissions and more than 4,000 tons of kerosene annually.