Taylor Swift's jet emissions spark debate on private plane tracking

Taylor Swift slammed for private jet use, environmental impact cited.

Pop Culture & Art May 27, 2024
Image: reuters.com

Pop star Taylor Swift has come under fire from environmentalists for her frequent use of private jets. This criticism intensified after a college student, Jack Sweeney, tracked her flights and revealed the significant carbon footprint associated with her travels.

Sweeney, who previously tracked Elon Musk's jet, used publicly available data from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to monitor Swift's flights. He reported that her planes emitted 1,200 tons of CO2 in 2023, which is 83 times higher than the average American.

Swift's representatives responded by sending Sweeney a cease-and-desist letter, claiming his activity constituted "stalking and harassing behavior." This move drew criticism from nature photographer and television presenter Chris Packham, who argued that Swift should have addressed the environmental concerns instead of silencing the messenger.

"She should have admitted she's in the wrong ... and then used her platform to make a statement about the environment by agreeing to sell her private jets," Packham said to The Mirror.

The controversy surrounding Swift's jet use has coincided with a recent amendment to the FAA Reauthorization Bill, signed by President Joe Biden on May 25, 2024. The amendment allows private aircraft owners to anonymize their registration details, making it difficult to track their movements.

Sweeney, however, maintains that he can still track private jets despite the new legislation. "Quite possibly it makes me want to push even harder on tracking," he said.

This development has sparked debate about the balance between privacy concerns of the wealthy and the public's right to information, particularly regarding the environmental impact of private air travel.



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