So there was yet another idiot wittering on about aviation and global warming on this morning's "Today" programme on Radio 4.
It's typical. They go for a visible non-problem that can be fixed fairly easily politically, but will virtually make no difference. If you simply banned commercial aviation in Britain tomorrow, it would hardly make a measurable impact on CO2 output (aviation in its entirety counts for 5% - and then would have to be replaced by some other method of transport - people would just drive instead because the railways are full - and the politicians who want to put the squeeze on the airlines are the same ones who balk at the cost of putting in more railway tracks). But of course, because people generally don't travel by air that frequently, it's a nice safe target to take shots at. So their holiday gets a little more expensive and it looks like Something Is Being Done. People feel good paying the green tax. Hrmpfh.
Meanwhile, domestic energy use accounts for 30% of CO2 emissions in Britain. But you don't get politicians coming on the radio to tell people to run the heat less and wear a jumper in the house, instead of a t-shirt (which would probably have a bigger impact on CO2 output). It's just so much easier to take shots at these big companies (the airlines) because the public at large doesn't have to make any effort that way.
Then they go on about the expansion in airline travel in the next 30 years and wring their hands on what to do about curbing it. Come on, it's not rocket science - if you want to stop the growth in airline travel DON'T APPROVE ANY NEW RUNWAYS! It'll solve two problems at once - shut the NIMBYs up, and curb airline travel growth through supply restriction. Market pricing will take care of matching capacity to demand.