Climate: these celebrities who abuse their private jets pinned on social networks

From Taylor Swift to Bernard Arnault, pressure is mounting on celebrities, politicians and big business owners to limit their travel by carbon-intensive private jet.

After posting a photo of his plane and that of his companion on Instagram in mid-July, reality star Kylie Jenner has been described as ” climate criminal by Internet users.

polluter and criminal another tweeted about the director Steven Spielbergaccused of taking a 28-minute flight.

170 flights for Taylor Swift

Countless “memes”, humorous photos or videos, have also circulated to make fun of the singer Taylor Swift after the publication on Friday of an analysis by the marketing agency Yard, which classifies it as “ most polluting celebrity of the year », with 170 flights since the beginning of the year.

Yard relied on data from the “Celebrity Jets” Twitter account which tracks celebrity thefts through public online data.

This account was started by a 19-year-old college student named Jack Sweeney. It started in June 2020 following the private jet ofElon Musk and now has 30 accounts tracking sports stars, Meta boss Mark Zuckerberg and even Russian oligarchs.

He inspired other Internet users like Sébastien*, a 35-year-old aeronautical engineer who created in April the “I Fly Bernard” account on the plane routes of French billionaires to question them about their carbon footprint.

What I’m trying to denounce is their use of private jets as taxis “, he explains, pointing to the many domestic or European flights made by the planes.

5 to 14 times more polluting than a classic flight

In Europe, three quarters of these flights could be made by train “, denounces William Todts, executive director of Transport & Environment, which brings together European NGOs in the sector.

The air sector is responsible for 2 to 3% of global CO2 emissions, but according to a Transport & Environment report published in May, private flights have a carbon footprint per passenger 5 to 14 times greater than commercial flights and 50 times greater than trains.

Private aviation has also been booming since the pandemic, its customers wishing to avoid flight cancellations and promiscuity in the face of the virus.

Some stars have reacted to social media pressure: Last week, a spokesperson for Taylor Swift claimed in the press that she ” regularly lends his jet to other people “. “Lui attributing most or all of these rides is totally incorrect “, he continues.

Rapper Drakesingled out for a 14-minute flight from Toronto to Hamilton, replied on Instagram that the plane had been moved to park elsewhere, ” no one was on this flight “, he specified. ” It’s even worse if he flew empty “, chokes Béatrice Jarrige, project manager within the association Shift Project.

Bouygues group emissions “offset” by reforestation projects

In France, a spokesman for the Bouygues group assures that the plane followed by “I Fly Bernard” presented as that of Martin Bouygues belongs to the group and ” is used by several collaborators “. He points out that the plane’s CO2 emissions are offset by reforestation projects, a solution criticized for not reducing emissions substantially.

Bernard ArnaultJean-Charles Decaux and Vincent Bolloré, also targeted by the Twitter account, declined to comment.

Ms Jarrige hopes this social media movement will turn into political action. “ It is not a question of completely banning flights, but the richest must make an effort to be sober “, she specifies, pleading for investments in the railway.

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Climate: these celebrities who abuse their private jets pinned on social networks

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