Saturday June 15, 2024

New US private jet emissions law 'protects' billionaires from public scrutiny

Law makes private jet tracking harder by letting owners and passengers stay anonymous

By Web Desk
May 28, 2024
Taylor Swift’s jets reportedly emitted 1,200 tons of CO2 in 2023. — Flying Jets/File
Taylor Swift’s jets reportedly emitted 1,200 tons of CO2 in 2023. — Flying Jets/File

The United States government has passed a new law that will shield billionaires from being held accountable for their private jets' emissions.

Private aircraft owners now have the option to anonymise their registration details, according to a recent addition to the Federal Aviation Administration reauthorisation bill, Independent reported.

This makes it significantly more difficult to track private plane activity, addressing longstanding complaints from celebrities and billionaires.

As before, FAA civil registration required private jet owners to register their aircraft in order for open radar mapping to be available for tracking. 

However, with this new regulation, tracking will be difficult as it allows jet owners to keep their personal information hidden.

In the past, well-known individuals like Taylor Swift and Elon Musk have come under fire after a student named Jack Sweeney tracked their usage of private aircraft and calculated the amount of carbon pollution their air travel was producing.

Celebrities who have come under fire for using private planes have been advocating for privacy. Musk threatened Sweeney with legal action and later banned him from Twitter after acquiring the site, which he renamed X. 

According to reports, Swift’s jets emitted 1,200 tonnes of CO2 in 2023, far exceeding the average American’s emissions.