is studying how it could incorporate hydrogen-fuelled aircraft in its network, which could help it meet an ambitious goal of replacing part of its domestic fleet with zero-emission aircraft.
The airline has signed an agreement with Airbus to undertake a joint research initiative focused on hydrogen aircraft, and particularly on the key question of fuel supply infrastructure. Air New Zealand is interested in using either hydrogen or electric aircraft technology in its regional operation.
While there is nothing yet available in the size the airline would need, the airline believes there is enough potential that such aircraft could be a viable option for the next generation of its smallest fleet type.
Zero-emission aircraft are one facet of Air New Zealand’s emission reduction plans, along with sustainable aviation fuel usage. The airline has historically been an industry leader in terms of sustainability efforts, which sits well with the airline’s – and New Zealand’s – marketing image.
On a more practical level, this will also allow the airline to stay ahead of global industry emissions commitments and government standards, and future-proof its fleet strategy.