UK-based bargain airline easyJet has thrown its weight behind the development of an electric taxiing system in a bid to cut its fuel consumption and enhance its environmental credibility. The “electric green taxiing system” (EGTS) is a joint venture by engineering and aerospace conglomerates Honeywell and Safran. Safran claims that four percent of easyJet’s fuel consumption is used taxiing aircraft before take off and after landing from and to gates.
Four percent may not sound much, but it’s a figure that’s higher than the norm for budget airlines like easyJet which typically have a high turnover of short-haul flights and so spend a proportionately higher amount of time on the ground. easyJet’s planes are thought to average 20 minutes of taxiing time per flight, amounting to 3.5 million ground-miles a year over its entire fleet.