More than 11,000 ghost flights took off from or landed at Irish airports in three years.
That means the plane took off with less than 10% of it's seats filled.
Figures from 2019 to 2021, released after a parliamentary question from Green TD Neasa Hourigan.
The numbers show Dublin Airport accounts for over 8,400 so-called 'ghost flights.'
Kerry Airport was the only other facility to go over 1,000.
I asked a parliamentary question about 'ghost' flights in Ireland (flights under 10% capacity). The answer I got is pretty worrying- perhaps this would be less of an issue if aviation fuel was treated similarly to other fuels by the EU. #ClimateCrisis pic.twitter.com/pNRIN0HhD0
— Neasa Hourigan TD (@neasa_neasa) January 17, 2023
Deputy Hourigan says the lack of taxes on aviation fuel and the need to maintain takeoff slots mean airlines feel the need to operate empty places.
Aviation is a "huge issue" for the climate and the industry is a "huge contributor" to emissions, according to the Green Party TD.
"It effectively creates no dis-incentives for airlines to control the amount of ghost flights - with under 10% capacity - that they're operating."
"To maintain their slots, particularly in busier airports, they need to hit a certain target of flights."
The Dublin Central rep added these flights don't serve anyone - because for a 60 seater plane to be less than 10 percent full it'd need 5 passengers at most.