Maybe flying should suck - it's a huge contributor to climate change!

Not to be contrarian here, but my first thought upon reading that paragraph about supersonic flights was: 'will this just accelerate climate change?'

The short answer is maybe. The article you linked talks about the possibility of suing sustainable aviation fuels to reduce the footprint of flying, but with further research into this it seems to be a bit of a catch-22 - we need more electricity to produce the fuel, but the majority of the world's energy supply is fairly unsustainable. So we would just shift the emissions around. (Not to mention the demand on electricity from other innovations like EVs)

"Electricity, water, and CO2 are used to create jet fuel that can be used in existing planes. But Ian Mason, a renewable energy engineer at the University of Canterbury, found that it would need at least an extra 28,000 GWh per year of electricity, two-thirds of the entire current supply, and at a time when many other sectors of the economy are seeking to electrify."

So this is an interesting systems view of UX to me. By making the flight experience more pleasant or enjoyable, are we encouraging behaviour that is eventually going to destroy the planet (and therefore... the experience)?

Or conversely, by introducing friction to the flying experience, are we taking a more responsible, long-term stance that ensures the experience can continue? (Hydrogen technology might even be able to catch up...)

Price is another way to create friction, but I'd argue that making flying a generally unpleasant experience (and making alternatives viable and desirable) could make people thinking twice about taking a flight. Though, depressingly, evidence seems to conclude that we need to discontinue commercial flying to even have a chance of meeting our reduction targets.

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