Airports can be green, and air travel could be cheaper in the future, but a scientist said in an interview that a large amount of investment is required first; Prof. Pericles Pilidis of Cranfield University in Bedfordshire believes that new hydrogen-powered planes will be available in ten years. He claimed that increasing airports could be more environmentally friendly in the long run. Meanwhile, Luton Airport announced that its new rail link connecting the terminal and the railway station will reduce emissions. Prof. Pilidis, head of Cranfield’s Power and Propulsion Department, said that zero-carbon hydrogen-powered aircraft would eliminate air travel’s environmental impact. When asked if airport development might be environmentally friendly, he answered “yes” – provided the necessary investments are made. He added, “there is going to be a high transition cost – but in the longer-term green aviation could be cheaper than the air travel we have at the moment.”

This year, Luton Airport will open a brand new Direct Air-Rail Transit (DART) system that will connect the airport terminal to the Luton Airport Parkway railway station, reducing the airport’s carbon footprint, according to the airport. The airport’s owner, Luton Rising, is planning to raise passenger counts to 32 million per year in the long run. Based on Graham Olver, chief executive officer of Luton Rising, green-controlled growth is the new framework for ensuring that promises made to the environment in the development of the airport are kept. Four legally binding criteria will be used to evaluate the plans: aircraft noise, air quality, greenhouse gas emissions, and public transportation use.