Air Canada is expanding its green and sustainability credentials by buying 30 electricity-generated planes for its regional fleet.
Air Canada is buying the electric-hybrid, battery-powered planes – which have capacity for up to 30 passengers – from Swedish company Heart Aerospace.
The airline will use the planes on its regional routes, with each plane having a travel range of 200km-400km.
The deal will boost Air Canada’s chances of reaching its net-zero by 2050 goal. It will also see Air Canada acquire a $5m equity stake in Heart Aerospace.
“Air Canada has taken a leadership position in the industry to address climate change. The introduction into our fleet of the ES-30 electric regional aircraft from Heart Aerospace will be a step forward to our goal of net zero emissions by 2050,” said Michael Rousseau, president and chief executive of Air Canada.
“Already, Air Canada is supporting the development of new technologies, such as sustainable aviation fuels and carbon capture, to address climate change. We are now reinforcing our commitment by investing in revolutionary electric aircraft technology, both as a customer for the ES-30 and as an equity partner in Heart Aerospace,” Mr Rousseau said.
The aircraft will be powered by lithium-ion batteries, and will be quieter, have better operational parameters, be more reliable, and have a smaller environmental footprint than conventional turbo-prop aircraft.
“Air Canada is a strategically important partner for Heart Aerospace. The company has one of the world’s largest networks operated by regional turboprops, and it is also a progressive, future leaning company especially in the green transmission,” said Anders Forslund, founder and chief executive of Heart Aerospace.
“With the ES-30 we can start cutting emissions from air travel well before the end of this decade,” he said.