26 / 02 / 2024

The Sustainable Aviation FAIR 2 Project Kick-off in Umeå

On February 15th, a reference group meeting was held in Umeå for the FAIR 2 project, focusing on enhancing understanding of the demand for sustainable regional air travel.

Participants in the FAIR 2 project include both Swedish and Finnish members from the Kvarken Council EGTC, as well as Luleå Municipality. The main objectives of the project are twofold; firstly, to deepen the understanding of the demand for sustainable regional aviation; and secondly, to increase awareness among residents, businesses, and authorities in Northern Nordic regions about the potential of sustainable regional air travel. Essential to this is the project’s demand study, which aims to comprehensively analyse the demand for regional cross-border aviation and attitudes towards zero-emission aviation alternatives. This in-depth understanding is vital for strategic decision-making, with the end goal of developing a resilient and sustainable regional aviation network across the Northern Nordics.

The FAIR 2 project, dedicated to promoting sustainable aviation practices across Northern Sweden and Finland, officially kicked off in Umeå on February 15th with 22 project stakeholders and financial supporters gathered.

Helena Holmgren, Business Developer at Luleå Business Region, represented Norrbotten at the meeting.

– I am part of the reference group as Norrbotten’s sole representative. Through quantitative and qualitative research, including mobile data, we are identifying probable and potential travel patterns with sustainable aircrafts in this phase of the project, she tells.

– As sustainable technologies begin to reshape the regional aviation landscape over the next forthcoming decades, it prompts reflections on the implications for Northern Sweden and Finland. These regions are characterised by short cross-border distances yet suffer from poor connectivity in the east-west direction. Also, the connectivity within Sweden and Finland can become much better – especially in the north.

A study on demand

Kuudes and DAIN Studios are the research partners in this project. Their work will lay the basis for decisions on how regional stakeholders will proceed with measures that support the introduction of sustainable aviation technology. This might include, for instance, identifying a business model that meets the region’s needs in the best way and is most suitable for the airport infrastructure, or infrastructure for drones and vertical take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL).

– The results are due to be presented on June 14th, and in the meantime, the reference group is providing input. The next phase for Kuudes and DAIN Studios will be proceeding with tasks such as mapping existing travel patterns and exploring various business models, says Terhi Hyvönen, Senior Insight Specialist in Kuudes and an assignment manager in the FAIR 2 demand study.

FAIR 2 – Promoting sustainable aviation

The FAIR initiatives are leading the way in making regional and cross-border aviation more eco-friendly. These projects are major steps for us in the Kvarken region and the Northern Nordics in our efforts to use green ways of flying within our region. We aim to be one of the first to switch to this kind of air travel as soon as certifications are in place.

The initial FAIR project enhanced knowledge about electric aviation and its possible effects for both the Kvarken region in Finland and Sweden, as well as Nordland in Norway. Project findings pointed to significant benefits, such as reduced travel times, decreased emissions, and the prospect of cost savings, which could collectively foster closer ties within the cross-border region.

Based on these insights, the project proposed actions for regional stakeholders to become early adopters of electric aviation. However, several of the proposed measures are dependent on better data to be dimensioned. Generating knowledge about the demand is the main scope of the EU Interreg project FAIR 2.

Read more about the previous FAIR project here. You can find the final report with recommended actions here.


Project geography.

Kvarken Council EGTC (sole beneficiary, EGTC)

Interreg Aurora, Regional Council of Lapland, Kvarken Council EGTC, FAB Kronoby Flyghangar, Vaasa Region Development Company VASEK, Umeå Municipality, Skellefteå Airport, Skellefteå Kraft, Luleå Business Region, Sundsvall Municipality, Into Seinäjoki, Länsstyrelsen Västerbotten, Örnsköldsvik Municipality, Lycksele Municipality, Region Västerbotten, MidtSkandia.