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On February 24, Axios' Joann Muller hosted a virtual event on the transportation sector and the travel industry's focus on sustainability and eco-friendly transit featuring United Airlines CEO Scott Kirby and General Motors Chief Sustainability Officer Dane Parker.

Scott Kirby unpacked the green future of air travel, highlighting scalable sustainability approaches like carbon sequestration. He shared his expectations for the airline industry's return to normal, and the impact of effective vaccine rollout and government response.

  • On how the airline industry can get to carbon neutral: "Carbon sequestration is the only solution that is fully scalable. We're doing a lot with sustainable fuels, for example, but you run into a limit of getting feedstock for sustainable fuels."
  • On his projections for when people will feel confident traveling again: "I have real confidence in the long term that by this time next year we'll be back towards a world where people feel safe traveling again."

Dane Parker unpacked GM's intent to completely phase out gasoline-powered cars and trucks, as well as how the government can employ policies to support the industry in its sustainability efforts.

  • On reaching an inflection point around electric vehicle adopotion: "There's an alignment of the technology and the maturity of the technology, the understanding of customers and the willingness of customers to embrace something new, and the understanding and support of policymakers around the world."

Axios CEO and co-founder Jim VandeHei hosted a View from the Top segment with Uber SVP of Mobility & Business Operations Andrew Macdonald and discussed sustainability in ride-share, focusing on electric vehicles and creating an equitable electric charging infrastructure.

  • "When you think about where chargers tend to be in cities today, often those are wealthier neighborhoods, office buildings, etc. When we look at our driver base, they live all over cities and they often live in areas that are underserved by some traditional services. And so we want to make sure that drivers have access to charging and that it's not just in wealthier areas."

Thank you Uber for sponsoring this event.

Go deeper

Updated 36 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: The end of the Omicron wave is in sight — Transplants rebound from COVID lull.
  2. Vaccines: WHO: No evidence that healthy children, teens need boosters — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America.
  3. Politics: Biden to announce plan to distribute 400 million masks for free — Government website for free COVID tests launches early.
  4. World: WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older.
  5. Variant tracker

University of Michigan reaches $490M settlement in sex abuse case

Jon Vaughn, a former University of Michigan and NFL football player, speaks at a press conference in Ann Arbor, Mich., in June 2021. Photo: Bill Pugliano/Getty Images

The University of Michigan on Wednesday reached a $490 million settlement with over a thousand survivors who allege that they were sexually assaulted by a former physician in the school's athletic department.

Driving the news: "It's been a long and challenging journey and these survivors have refused to remain silent," attorney Parker Stinar said Wednesday.

5 hours ago - Technology

3D printing's next act: big metal objects

Chief Scientist Andy Bayramian makes modifications to the laser system on Seurat's 3D metal printer. Photo courtesy of Seurat Technologies.

A new metal 3D printing technology could revolutionize the way large industrial products like planes and cars are made, reducing the cost and carbon footprint of mass manufacturing.

Why it matters: 3D printing — also called additive manufacturing — has been used since the 1980s to make small plastic parts and prototypes. Metal printing is newer, and the challenge has been figuring out how to make things like large car parts faster and cheaper than traditional methods.