The air cargo industry is a USD 60 billion business, and passenger-accompanied air cargo is a major profit maker accounting for approximately 15% of the industry's overall revenue. At a high level aviation security conference held by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in September 2012, ICAO advised that civil aviation was estimated to grow by 6% in 2013; 6.4% in 2014; and 4.9% on an annual basis until 2020, such growth being encouraging to the air transport industry from an economic perspective. At the same time, ICAO cautioned that this growth may not necessarily halt the persisting threat of unlawful interference with civil aviation and that the threat will evolve into a complex web of activity as new innovative methods of attack are conceived. This brought to bear the compelling need to address the growing vulnerabilities of the air transport system and the sustainability of aviation security.
In this context, the conference noted that air cargo security, its sustainability and the need for innovative approaches to risk management were considered paramount. This article addresses these issues against the backdrop of the conference and discusses the manner in which sustainability and innovation could be used for the benefit of air cargo security.Air and Space Law