To reaching 7.8 billion people on the planet with the coronavirus vaccine requires an airlift which fills almost 8,000 Boeing Co. 747 freighters. Calling it the “largest single transport challenge ever,” the air transport body called on governments to start preparing for the large-scale delivery of a Covid-19 vaccine.
“The potential size of the delivery is enormous. Just providing a single dose to 7.8 billion people would fill 8,000 cargo aircraft,” IATA said. The world’s population is estimated to have hit 7.8 billion in March this year. The transportation of vaccines is not simple; they have to be handled and transported in line with international regulatory requirements, at controlled temperatures and without delay to ensure the quality of the product.
Developing markets depend on cargo carried in the passenger planes, many of which remain grounded because of the fall-off in demand and travel restrictions put in place to stop the spread of the virus.
The U.S. and other governments have invested billions of dollars to develop a shot at an accelerated pace, and more than two dozen vaccines are now being tested in volunteers less than a year after the virus was first discovered. Eleven candidates are in late-stage trials.