From: Associated Press
Published March 18, 2005 12:00 AM

Air Travel Industry Leaders Agree on Need to Improve Environmental Protection

GENEVA — Air transport industry leaders agreed Friday that they need to do more to reduce noise and pollution.

"We urgently need to work on 'greening' our aviation business," Robert J. Aaronson, director-general of Airports Council International, said at a meeting of about 300 representatives of the industry, including airlines and manufacturers.

Aaronson said the council, whose members operate 1,450 airports in 175 countries, agreed to co-sponsor the two-day gathering "because of our deep concern that the tide of public opinion against us is running faster than the industry can sustain."

The leaders agreed they had to work together, but also needed cooperation from governments because the challenges are global and need global solutions.

Governments should work with airports and air navigation services to ensure environmentally responsible airport expansion and air-route efficiency, the leaders said.

The meeting, the first to bring together heads of different air transport bodies and companies, will probably be followed up by a second session next year, Rochat said.

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