It’s official: our flight calculator rocks

  • May 13, 2008
  • News
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We pre-announced this a few weeks ago, but now you can see for yourself: the new TerraPass flight calculator gives you the most personalized carbon footprint information available, using data provided by TRX that takes into account not just your route, but also your airline and even your seat class.

Check it out.

It’s surprising some of the disparities you uncover when you have data like this at your fingertips:

* Marvel at how Delta is 34% more efficient than US Airways on the JFK to SFO route.
* Delight in the ability to indicate the number of stopovers for your flight.
* Shudder at the outrageous carbon footprint associated with first class travel.*

The new calculator is so detailed that it even takes into account the direction of travel. Factors such as prevailing winds means that the same route has a different impact depending on which way you’re going takes into account a range of factors including plane type, route anomalies such as weather detours and holding patterns, cargo loads, seat pitch and width, etc. TRX engaged an outside expert to validate their emissions methodology. Here’s a quote from the validation statement:

> In ICF’s opinion, the TRX calculator employs an appropriate methodology and the best publicly available industry data. The TRX Calculator adjusts for all significant factors that affect the calculation of a flight’s emissions and the appropriate allocation of those emissions to the individual passenger. Where specific information is not available, the TRX calculator employs appropriate assumptions and relevant industry averages which result in a reasonable calculation of the environmental impacts of a specific flight.

\* Incidentally, people often wonder why there’s a difference in carbon impact between seat classes. It’s because first class travel takes up a greater amount of the available passenger space, and therefore lays claim to a greater proportion of the emissions. Basically, it’s sort of like buying two seats.

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