TAIPEI (Taiwan News)—EVA Air and China Airlines were ranked in the top five most fuel-efficient airlines among 20 airlines operating transpacific routes, while Qantas was ranked as the least efficient, according to an International Council on Clean Transportation’s (ICCT) transpacific airline fuel efficiency ranking published on Tuesday.
The ICCT report compares the fuel efficiency of 20 airlines operating nonstop flights between the mainland United States and East Asia and Oceania. It extends the previous transatlantic fuel efficiency methodology to the transpacific market, according to the report.
According to the report, Hainan Airlines and All Nippon Airways (ANA) were the most fuel-efficient airlines on transpacific operations in 2016, both with an average fuel efficiency of 36 passenger-kilometers per liter of fuel (pax-km/L). Qantas Airways ranked as the least fuel-efficient, burning an average of 64% more fuel per passenger-kilometer than Hainan and ANA, the ICCT report said.
Taiwan’s EVA Air and China Airlines were both ranked No. 4 most fuel-efficient airlines on transpacific operations in 2016, with 34 pax-km/L.
(Source: TRANSPACIFIC AIRLINE FUEL EFFICIENCY RANKING, 2016, White Paper)
The report said the aircraft used, passenger load factor, and freight carriage are key determinants of airline fuel efficiency.
The Haikou, Hainan-based Hainan Airlines took the top spot in the transpacific rankings because of its use of very fuel-efficient aircraft, the report said. The Boeing 787 Dreamliner flew more than 80% of Hainan’s 3,200 transpacific flights, with the Airbus A330 accounting for the rest, according to the ICCT report.
With regard to EVA Air, the report said the airline used Boeing 777-300ER aircraft on all routes between the United States and Taipei, with the exception of 250 flights using a Boeing 747-400. EVA retired its Boeing 747s in August 2017. While the 777 is more fuel- efficient than the 747, there would be a negligible increase in the airline’s fuel efficiency metric related to the aircraft switch because the 747 accounted for only about 4% of flights, according to the report .
China Airlines deployed the Boeing 777-300ER on all transpacific routes with the exception of two flights of a Boeing 747-400, the report said. In 2017, China Airlines started flying the Airbus A350-900 on its Taipei-San Francisco route.
Explaining why Qantas is the least fuel-efficient airline, the report said the Australia's largest airline deploys the Airbus A380 and Boeing 747-400ER, two of the most fuel-inefficient aircraft, on its transpacific routes. Qantas had the lowest average passenger load factor of any airline on transpacific flights, filling only 74% of available seats, as well as one of the lowest freight shares at 12% of total payload, according to the report.