“Felix, I come bearing good news,” Orak said.
“What is it?” Felix replied while tending to his plants.
“Denmark is a country in Europe and it has set an exciting new goal. It plans to make domestic flights (flights that operate within a country’s airspace boundaries) fossil fuel-free by 2030. Denmark’s Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen announced it in her New Year’s speech,” Orak said.
“Why, that’s awesome,” Felix replied.
He added, “Fossil fuels are petroleum (oil), coal, and natural gas. They form naturally over many years from the remains of plants, animals, and other living organisms that lived a long time ago. Fossil fuels are burned to create energy. It is used to produce electricity, fuel for vehicles, heat for buildings, etc.
But burning fossil fuels is harmful to the environment. They release harmful gases. It causes pollution. Fossil fuels are also nonrenewable resources, meaning they are limited. Once they are burned, they are gone forever. We cannot renew them. We need a greener and environment-friendly alternative to fossil fuels.”
“Yes, that’s why Denmark is looking for alternatives. The country wants to cut its total carbon emissions (release of carbon dioxide in the air) by 70%,” Orak said, “Carbon dioxide is one of the greenhouse gases. When these gases get trapped in the Earth’s atmosphere, it heats the planet. This leads to global warming and then climate change – the biggest concern for humanity today. However, Denmark doesn’t have the solutions or technology required to meet the goal yet. Several researchers and companies are currently working towards a solution.”
“Oh, no,” Felix replied, sad, “will the technology and solutions to meet the target be ready by 2030?”
“I am not sure. Airbus, the airplane manufacturer, is developing planes fueled by hydrogen. They could be operational by 2035. If hydrogen is made from renewable resources (such as solar, wind, tidal energy), it could help Denmark achieve its goals,” Orak replied, “Hydrogen fuel can be a power source just like fossil fuel. It can be created using renewable resources such as solar or wind power. Hydrogen fuel can be burned in a jet engine to fuel the aircraft or airplane. It can also be used to power the propeller (a device with blades that spin fast).”
“Denmark is not the only country in Europe planning to make its flights fossil fuel-free,” Orak added, “Sweden and France also want to make their flights more environment-friendly.”
“I am glad!” Felix said.