The Editor’s Corner #22 – Israel Banning Boeing 747s Will Have Massive Impact on Cargo Operators

Shadman Samee from Dhaka, Bangladesh, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

LONDON – Israel making the decision to ban Boeing 747 aircraft will have a massive impact on cargo operators going into the future. Welcome to The Editor’s Corner.

The Editor’s Corner is an op-ed series from AviationSource Editor-in-Chief James Field, who is going to give his thoughts (Maybe controversial) on all things going on in the aviation industry.

In case you have missed the last 19, feel free to browse through them before you continue to read this piece:

  1. The Editor’s Corner #1: The Industry Isn’t Ready for Summer 2022 Demand
  2. The Editor’s Corner #2: JetBlue’s Offer for Spirit Airlines Will Change The American Airline Dynamic
  3. The Editor’s Corner #3: Boris Johnson’s Damage To The Aviation Sector is Another Reason for Resignation
  4. The Editor’s Corner #4: PLAY Will Transform The Market with a Post-Pandemic Edge
  5. The Editor’s Corner #5: Detriment of the Boeing 737 MAX & 787 Is Causing a 777X-Based Aftershock
  6. The Editor’s Corner #6: Qantas’ Plans For The Future Will Turn Around Negative Times
  7. The Editor’s Corner #7: The P2F Market Is Hotting Up…
  8. The Editor’s Corner #8: O’Leary Is Gunning For Another Cheap Boeing Order
  9. The Editor’s Corner #9: Ukraine Crisis: Turkish Airlines’ A350 Snap-Up from Aeroflot May Have Something To Do With A Red Carpet…
  10. The Editor’s Corner #10 – Ukraine Crisis: Lessors Will Not Win The Russia Battle
  11. The Editor’s Corner #11 – Spirit Airlines Are Slowly Changing Their Mind…
  12. The Editor’s Corner #12 – The Indian Air Cargo Market Is Hotting Up
  13. The Editor’s Corner #13 – Video Footage From RedAir Flight 203 Highlights Dangers of Carrying Luggage During an Evacuation
  14. The Editor’s Corner #14 – The Spirit-Frontier-JetBlue Battle for Merger Will Be Remembered As A Mess
  15. The Editor’s Corner #15 – Flyr, Norse & Norwegian Have Opportunity to Capitalise on SAS’ Woes
  16. The Editor’s Corner #16 – The Airbus & Boeing Battle Will Heat Up At Farnborough
  17. The Editor’s Corner #17 – My Predictions for Farnborough Were Well Off…
  18. The Editor’s Corner #18 – Why Do Airports & Airlines Fight Over Chaos When Government is to Blame?
  19. The Editor’s Corner #19 – Manchester Airport Has Resolved Its Chaotic Period – But Improvements Are Needed…
  20. The Editor’s Corner #20 – Ukraine Crisis: Wizz Air Abu Dhabi’s Russia Return Was A Mistake From The Get-Go
  21. The Editor’s Corner #21 – More Than Meets The Eye to The Emirates-United Codeshare

Israel Banning Boeing 747s Will Have Massive Impact on Cargo Operators

Israel choosing to ban the Boeing 747 will have a massive impact on cargo operators who operate in the region. For the sheer volume it can handle, the 747 has always had its benefits on the cargo front.

Such a decision is the first made by any country in the world, and this could potentially set the foundations for other countries to follow suit in the name of sustainability.

If that does remain the case, then this will definitely change the way that cargo operators will have to look at their options. Could it be for the better or for the worst?

The News In Question…

Israel will ban the Boeing 747 on March 31 next year in the country’s bid to reduce the level of noise and air pollution out of the Ben Gurion Airport.

Such a move made by the Israeli government targets cargo operators, as no carriers operate the aircraft type on a commercial basis. El Al used to have a fleet of 747s but have been since retired.

There has been some confusion behind this directive, as it’s not clear whether this includes the newer generation 747-8F, which has better fuel efficiency than previous models.

AviationSource has approached the Israeli government on whether the ban extends to that variant of the 747.

Even with that in mind, the Director General of the Israel Airports Authority, Hagai Topolansky, appears to have implied this is on all 4-engined aircraft.

“The increase in passenger and aircraft traffic at Ben Gurion Airport is an environmental change.”

“I intend to lead the Airports Authority and Ben Gurion Airport not only in the fields of digitization but also to lead the environment and sustainability in the world of aviation; stopping the landing of 4-engine planes at Ben Gurion Airport is one step and the first step in a broader plan that is currently being formulated”.

Could This Force Orders for Boeing & Airbus Freighters?

This could provide a perspective that cargo operators who use the 747 Freighter may be forced to order Boeing 777 Freighters or Airbus A330/A350 Freighters.

With these aircraft able to take large volumes of cargo, this is something that we could see if other countries decide to join suit with Israel and do the same.

Ultimately, this would be sad news for enthusiasts alike, as the 747 has been a staple of commercial aviation for over 50 years, and its successes have been evident in this regard.

We will have to wait and see what happens in the future because if other countries decide to take moves like this, it could very well change the operational landscape of the cargo market.

The Sustainable Decision Has Its Perks, Of Course…

The sustainable decision has its perks, of course. With the aviation industry constantly focusing on sustainability and becoming net-zero by 2050, this will, of course, lead the way for better emissions out of Israel.

Just this one measure from the Israelis won’t solve everything, but it is going to be interesting to see what the rest of the broader plan will be when it comes to cutting emissions in the country.

The next generation of freighters is going to be a lot more fuel efficient than older aircraft. It’s just the case that it takes time for them to be developed and ultimately delivered.

Yes, this will change things up for cargo carriers who operate in Israel, but given the substantial amount of revenue in this part of the industry as well, it will be an easy and adjustable change.

As Sad As It Is, It’s A Decision That Needs To Be Made…

As sad as it is, it’s a decision that needs to be made, as a lot of focus does need to be placed on becoming sustainable in an industry that is typically a massive polluter.

From the perspective of sustainability, it is a unique idea by Israel to ban more polluting aircraft like the 747, and will definitely push operators to order aircraft with better efficiencies.

My personal opinion is that as the cargo market continues to explode with growth, there could very well be demand for sustainable double-decker freighters, which would be an interesting concept to look out for.

And that would be an exciting sight to see.


This whole topic is an interesting one, as Israel will be the first country to try this out. If it works, then other countries could follow suit in this regard.

There are still a few countries that have 747s registered in their respective regions, but this may be something that could catch on in later times.

My only criticism of this, however, is that compared to all other emissions within a single region, a 747 cannot be the sole responsible party for pollution.

You have the shipping ports, the old cars, and much more to contend with. It was a confusing revelation at first, but this may not have the impact that the authorities are intending.

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