At the first national aviation conference in Leipzig on Wednesday German Chancellor Angela Merkel stressed the importance of the aviation industry for the German economy and for climate protection.
“This also includes making Germany a leading location for climate-friendly aircraft technologies.
“Criticism of air traffic was growing and it is more important that the industry can show that growth is not always associated with more growth in climate-damaging emissions,“ Merkel said.
She, however, praised the aviation industry’s commitments to maintaining a steady aircraft emission level after 2020 and reducing it to 50 per cent of 2005 levels by 2050.
She said cutting aviation emissions would require, for instance, the production of synthetic, climate-friendly fuels or the switch to electrically-powered aircraft.
Merkel emphasised that her government was not only focusing on electric mobility, but also on hydrogen as a propulsion medium for aircraft.
She also noted that a German hydrogen strategy should be developed by the end of the year.
“We want to take an open technological approach to things, noting that the potential of hydrogen for aviation is far from being tapped.
“The aviation industry is of considerable overall economic importance to Germany as well over a quarter of its export value is transported all over the world by air freight.
“In Germany, 850,000 people are directly or indirectly employed in the aviation industry,“ Merkel said.