‘Celebrity Jets’, the Twitter account that shows the contamination of famous private planes Maldita.es

In recent days they have started circulating various content it would show the trips that different celebrities and famous people take in their private planes. In the messages you can see how personalities such as singer Drake or presenter Oprah Winfrey would have done 30 minute flights and registration of CO emissions2 of these routes. Since Maldita.es we explain them how do you get this data private flights and their impact on the climate crisis.

Record celebrity travels and what they’re streaming

Through a search on Twitter, we can see that the author of these contents is the account ‘Celebrity jets‘: an automated profile created by programmer Jack Sweeney which records various alerts associated with the take-off and landing of private planes.

This profile not only broadcasts information such as the location and model of the aircraft, but also offers a complete x-ray of the journey time, as well as the fuel consumption, its cost and the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) who issued in the atmosphere during travel.

Taking former boxer Floyd Mayweather, for example, we can see how the former sportsman’s private plane landed July 19, 2022 at Van Nuys airport, located in Los Angeles (USA), a 40-minute drive from Las Vegas. A trip which, according to the story, would have meant a cost of 956 kg of fuel, which translates into a cost of 2,145 dollars for the athlete and an increase of three tons of CO2 delivered to the planet.

Capture of the ‘Celebrity Jets’ account

This account only records the route of the aircraft, which does not mean that the owner is inside at the time. However, on social media like Twitter The environmental impact of succession of short trips made by different celebrities.

The trip that I would have made rapper Drake’s plane on July 19 for Barcelonawith an estimated duration of 52 minutes, would have emitted 16 tonnes of CO2. A number that triples Spain’s per capita emissionsestimated at 5.38 tons for the year 2019 according to Our World in Data with data from Global Carbon Project.

Shorter was the trip made by singer Jack Nicklau, who is said to have landed on on July 18 in Rhode Island after 21 minutes of flight, with a consumption of 478 kg of fuel and an impact of around two tonnes of CO2or the 10 minutes walking that Mayweather would have carried out between two airports in the city of Las Vegas on the same day and which would result in an impact of almost a ton of this greenhouse gas.

CO2 it is not the only agent contributing to climate change in the world of aviation. While aeronautics generates 13.9% of transport emissions, according to the European Commissionand the 3.5% of all human activities that drive climate change, agents such as ozone, water vapor or the contrails themselves too affect the climate crisisas we have already explained in Maldita.es. A fact to which must be added the forecast that flights will increase by 42% until 2040.

How do you calculate flight time and emissions?

The author of this bot, Jack Sweeney, not only explained how this algorithm works, but also published their code on GitHubRepository on line in which computer code can be shared and modified collaboratively. While the program can detect whether an aircraft has taken off or landed at a certain point, is also able to estimate the duration of the flight by measuring the time difference between the two events.

Once the flight time has been obtained, the program calculates the amount of fuel that has been used and the tons of CO2 who have been released. For it takes into account the average hourly consumption of each type of aircraft and multiplies it by the flight time to get an estimate of the amount of fuel spent en route. Regarding CO2 emissions, aviation fuel (the most widely used are Jet A and Jet A-1) retains a ratio of 3.16 kg of CO2 per kg of fuelaccording to Federal Aviation Administration the United States. This multiplication is added to the formula.

Are these data public?

Although the flights are private, the truth is that your data are public and accessible to those who know and the necessary equipment. In Maldita.es we have already explained how the pages that track aircraft in real time work. This information is provided by the Vigilance systems Automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B)whereby a vessel broadcasts its real-time status and position in an open manner, without the need for a request, to facilitate its monitoring.

This signal can be picked up by anyone who has a receiver ready to receive it and whose information can be aggregated to create these flight tracking systems. In fact, trackers like FlightRadar24 oh ADS-B exchange they have developed their systems through the receivers which have been deployed by various aeronautical enthusiasts around the world.

Do these trackers include private flight information? Well, it depends on the tracker. While services like Flightradar24 oh Aware of the theft may not display some aircraft on request (usually military aircraft), the truth is that this restriction is the decision of the company who distributes the data.

In fact, flight trackers like ADS-B exchangethe service that uses this automated account on social networks, displays the information without “filters” and only reflects the data it receives from users, including private jets. So yes: flight data is public and accessible to anyone with the necessary means. A question that belongs to a aviation privacy debate.

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