Last study completed in 2002
Here are some hard facts you can use when the airport discussion comes up again. Most California residents have no idea how big a part aviation plays in the state’s economy.

California is home to:

  • 255 public use airports
  • 29 commercial use airports
  • 147 medical heliports
  • 25 military/NASA airports.
  • There are:

  • 71,053 active pilots
  • 8,984 active flight instructors
  • 42,360 active aircraft mechanics
  • 32,454 active general aviation aircraft
  • General aviation aircraft flew 3.2 million hours
  • In each category this is approximately 11% of the U.S. total
  • Over eighty-seven (87) million passengers boarded aircraft in California during 2002. Which is over 14% of all U.S.
  • Air Cargo exports by value were flown from California Airports.
  • 7 of the top 50 U.S. airports are in California.

    Economic Contributions:
    Here are some of the study highlights from the Economic Study Performed by the California Division of Aeronautics:

  • Aviation contributes nearly 9% of both the total state employment (1.7 million jobs) and total state output ($110.7 billion)
  • Aviation generates $250.2 million in annual tax revenue for California Note: $238 Million estimated in 2005 of which the state returns less then 5% to state aviation
  • Aviation saves lives via emergency response, medical and fire fighting
  • Nearly half of all domestic tourists visiting California arrive by air
  • Aviation delivered over $14.5 billion in tourist dollars to California in 2001
  • California air cargo was valued at $173 billion in 2000
  • SOURCE: California Division of Aeronautics. For more information please visit: