FAA Needs to Unleash the Commercial Potential of Drones
A new era of aviation innovation is upon us as drones—uncrewed, autonomous aircraft—take flight alongside traditional crewed aircraft. Tucked within President Biden’s recent Executive Order on Promoting Competition in the American Economy is an affirmation of the “great potential” of drones and a directive for federal regulators to “facilitate innovation that fosters U.S. market leadership and market entry” for emerging aviation technologies such as this one.
Drones present a massive economic opportunity, but today’s federal regulatory framework is hindering innovation rather than facilitating it. Why? Because, despite important advances made under the Obama and Trump administrations since a congressional direction in 2012, Federal Aviation Administration regulations have not kept pace with what drones can safely and efficiently do.
Today, American companies are using drones for essential commercial purposes abroad—but they’re not able to scale their businesses…