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E missions from A viation. SAGE. System for assessing Aviation’s Global Emissions. International Civil Aviation Organization briefing for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice May 2005. Maryalice Locke

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Emissions from Aviation


System for assessing Aviation’s Global Emissions

International Civil Aviation Organization briefing for the

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice

May 2005

Maryalice Locke

U.S. Federal Aviation Administration

Washington, DC

[email protected]



SAGE – System for assessing Aviation’s Global Emissions

  • estimates aircraft fuel burn and emissions
  • for variable-year emissions inventories and
  • for operational, policy, and technology-related scenarios.
  • Gridded
    • latitude
    • longitude
    • altitude
    • time
  • AnalysisScale
    • Single flight
    • Aircraft
    • Engine
    • Airport
    • Country/ Region
    • Global Totals
  • Parameters
    • carbon monoxide (CO)
    • hydrocarbons (HC)
    • nitrogen oxides (NOx)
    • carbon dioxide (CO2)
    • water (H2O)
    • sulfur oxides
    • (SOx modeled as SO2)
model overview


  • Best publicly available data
  • Internationally recognized and/or accepted methodologies
  • Flexible modules incorporate state-of-the-art methodswith contributions from government, industry, and academia
  • All methods and data are open

Steps to develop an inventory

  • Process: radar, schedule and fleet data
  • Determine: equipment, taxi times, delays & atmospheric parameters
  • Compute: trajectory, fuel burn and emissions
  • Output: inventory results for variable level analyses
model overview4

Fleet description

  • Over 120 unique aircraft types with matching tables for performance data, and ability to expand
  • Exact engine assignments through tail number matching for flights by top 10 US airlines
  • Rest of the engines assigned from statistical distributions of engines based on airline and aircraft categories

Movements database

  • Enhanced Traffic Management System (ETMS) schedules and trajectories (radar) for US and some other regions
  • Official Airline Guide (OAG) schedules for rest of world with route dispersion methodology
  • Trajectories based on actual airport coordinates (latitude, longitude, and altitude)

Emissions modeling

Boeing Method 2 (BM2)

ICAO emissions databank

output data results

Country and Region definitions are based on airport locations

  • Within region and bunker

(1) Africa, (2) Asia, (3) Australia and Oceania, (4) Eastern Europe,

(5) Middle East, (6) North America & Caribbean, (7) South America, and

(8) Western Europe & North Atlantic.

output data results6
  • Inventory of fuel burn and emissions for individual flights
    • Approximately 30 million records per year
  • Inventory of fuel burn and emissions for flight segments

(points along flight path)

    • Approximately 1 billion records per year
  • Inventory of fuel burn and emissions for world grids,

1 degree by 1 degree by 1 kilometer for each hour of the year

    • Approximately 900 million records per year
output data results7

Example plot of fuel burn on a 1 degree by 1 degree world grid

modeling capabilities

Historic Inventories

  • Development of emissions inventories which can be analyzed from a single flight with a specified airframe/engine combination to analysis by airline, airport, city-pair, region, or worldwide

Analysis of policy scenarios and forecasting

  • Proposed airframe/engine technology
  • Changing global fleets
  • Improvements to air traffic control/airspace capacity
  • Enhancements to airport infrastructure
  • Improvements in aircraft operations




Fuel Consumption Data

International Civil Aviation Organization

briefing for the

United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice

May 2005

Maryalice Locke



Comparison of aviation fuel consumption data

UNFCCC inventories 1999-2002

Modeled aviation data:

AERO 1999

AERO2k 2002

SAGE 2000-2004

domestic international
Domestic / International

Fuel consumption data was split into domestic and international traffic components and presented by country.

  • A flight is defined as a single take-off to the next landing.
  • Domestic flights take off and land in the same country.
  • International flights take off in one country and land in another.
  • All fuel consumption on a flight is attributed to the departure country.
  • Data were generated by modeling worldwide flights and aggregating the data into each country’s domestic and international flight categories.
  • Flights were attributed to countries based on airport locations using various publicly available airport databases.
methods comparison
Methods Comparison

Aspects of modeling methods may result in estimates that are slightly lower (or higher) than the probable actual value.

  • Modeling methods are continuously improving

Systematic effects in fuel-sold inventory methods may tend to overestimate fuel actually burned in commercial aircraft

Scope of data covered varies:

  • Model data for this analysis does not include military, piston-engine aircraft or general aviation operations
geographic coverage
Geographic Coverage

Modeling for ICAO analyses does not consider data in terms of Annex I and non-Annex I parties.

Countries selected for this comparison were determined in part on completeness of aviation data in the UNFCCC inventories.

Country definitions may vary between data sets.

Emissions Coverage

Aviation tools compute fuel burn and emissions of CO2, H2O, CO, HC, NOx, and SOx (modeled as SO2).

Data, though, are presented only for fuel consumption.

CO2 and H2O emissions can be directly computed from this fuel consumption data.


Similar values seen in the comparison of total fuel consumption figures (domestic plus international)

Though, UNFCCC total and domestic fuel consumption data are generally slightly higher than modeled data,

International figures appear closer than domestic fuel consumption

Variations in country definitions result in comparison discrepancies


Most UNFCCC inventories are based on fuel sold data.

  • No uniform approach to disaggregating fuel data into domestic and international components
  • Statistical source data variations may require adaptation before used in national inventories
  • Aviation traffic is a better basis for distinguishing domestic and international
emissions from aviation

Emissions fromAviation

Bonn, 21 May 2005

Presentation by

The International Civil Aviation Organization

Jane Hupe, Secretary of CAEP

The comparison of emissions data from inventories and modeled data was a valid and positive exercise

ICAO believes UNFCCC will be able to use our input to continue to work with Parties towards improving the quality of aviation emissions data

next steps
Next Steps
  • CAEP will continue to
    • Evaluate the aviation models
    • Identify possible areas of improvement
  • Modelers are continuing to improve methods and source data
  • Parties should work on improving the quality of aviation emissions data in their inventories and better distinguish domestic and international aviation
next steps icao will
Next Steps … ICAO will
  • continue to work on the assessment of the evolution of emissions and towards improving availability of information related to the present and future impact of aircraft engine emissions as requested by the ICAO Assembly
next steps icao will24
Next Steps … ICAO will
  • explore the feasibility and cost implications of providing a database of worldwide air services for UNFCCC Parties;
  • continue to study policy options to limit or reduce the environmental impact of emissions,
  • cooperate with UNFCCC and
  • assist SBSTA regarding methodological issues, as needed
Keeping track of ICAO's

environmental activities