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Lee Boulton

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    Earlier this month, I was invited to present at the Asia Pacific (APAC) Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation CEO Committee Meeting to talk about our recent deployment of Free Route Airspace and the benefits it could deliver across the region.

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    Last week, on 2nd December 2021, NATS implemented the biggest airspace change ever undertaken in the UK and introduced Free Route Airspace for the first time into UK skies. It’s an exciting milestone in a project which has been underway for over five years and will enable huge fuel, flight time and CO2 savings. But what is Free Route Airspace (FRA) and what does it mean for airlines? 

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    By 2030, the aviation industry is targeting an overall reduction of at least 15% in net CO2 emissions relative to 2019, and a 40% net reduction by 2040. Managing our airspace more effectively, and flying more efficiently, will play a crucial role in the future of aviation.

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    All kinds of aircraft travel through UK airspace – from huge commercial planes to small helicopters – all of which have to be carefully integrated and managed. This is particularly true of the busy skies over London, which has a skyline that continues to grow outwards and upwards.

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