Fighting Climate Change With Cleaner Aircraft - NBC Bay Area

Fighting Climate Change With Cleaner Aircraft

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    Fighting Climate Change With Cleaner Aircraft

    Air travel, which for decades have been a big polluter, has plans to clean up its act. And some of those plans run through Silicon Valley. Scott Budman reports.

    (Published Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019)

    Air travel, which for decades have been a big polluter, has plans to clean up its act. And some of those plans run through Silicon Valley.

    Last year, 4.3 billion people people took flight and airplane emissions counted for about 2% of all global greenhouse gasses. Tech companies are now trying a new way to fly.

    Bay Area startups like ZeroAvia have the goal of powering planes with electricity.

    "Our objective is cleaner flights," said Val Miftakhov, ZeroAvia founder and CEO.

    ZeroAvia plans to power nine-passenger planes on flights up to 500 miles -- by battery. It would eventually make the airport fuel truck a thing of the past.

    "We want to go to the makers of aircraft and say now you have a better option to power your aircraft," Miftakhov said.

    Another option is being developed by , the Silicon Valley tech wing of airline giant Airbus.

    The company's "Vahana" is 100% battery powered and autonomous.

    "We want to do it sustainably and emission-free," said Paige Wilson,  communications director. "So that requires it to be all electric."

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