aaaaaEurope will not suspend emissions tax despite pressure
The EU Emissions Trading System is far from perfect but it has been designed such that fuel efficiency will be very much rewarded, since it is emissions rather than, say, flight distances, that determine the cost of compliance. Airlines with younger, more efficient fleets stand to gain against their competitors, in fact many economists believe that airlines overall will gain financially from EU ETS because they are likely to charge customers a flat rate increase (25p in the case of Ryanair http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2012/jan/12/ryanair-adds-green-taxy-levy ) on tickets that will exceed their actual costs. On the issue of hubbing, yes it’s true that a stop-off outside Europe would mean airlines wouldn’t need to surrender so many emissions permits, but really with the EU ETS allowance prices so low, it seems very unlikely that this would make financial sense.
Meant to add this link to a blog by the US NGO Environmental Defense Fund on how EU ETS will reward efficiency: http://blogs.edf.org/climatetalks/ – see top item
In my opinion the question of fuel efficiency is totally disingenuous. Yes
… it’s good to save emissions, but … ALL aircraft pump out massive
amounts of GHG’s.
The airlines are right to complain that the emissions tax takes no
account of whether the planes are fuel efficient or not. They are
also right that the scheme penalises direct flights from Singapore to
Europe more heavily than those that stop off on route. But these
problems could be solved if they were to agree to worldwide taxes on
aviation fuel instead.
TUESDAY 14TH FEBRUARY 2012
Europe will not suspend emissions tax despite pressure
Europe will not suspend the new emissions scheme despite causing anger
from airlines and countries worldwide.
Airlines fear the EU Emission Tax Scheme, which was introduced on 1
January, is threatening to cause a trade war.
But although Europe is prepared to be flexible, it claims it will not
scrap the scheme.
Speaking at the Aviation Leadership Summit at the Singapore Airshow, Siim
Kallas, vice president of the European Commission told the BBC: “Europe
will implement its system with difficulties, with conflicts, with court
cases, whatever, the system will be introduced
“We’re not trying to dominate the world. The EU has asked for years and
years, there must be a world solution for carbon emission.
“We’re ready to negotiate within our framework,” he said. “We are serious
about negotiating and we have people who are active in finding solutions.”
The scheme means each airline is allowed to emit some carbon dioxide for
free but will have to buy ‘carbon credits’ from other airlines or
industries if they exceed their allowance. Airlines flying into or out of
the European Union and not complying could face fines.
Chinese airlines have already been banned from joining the scheme by the
State Council, see previous story, and both America and Canada have voiced
Singapore Airlines CEO Goh Choon Phong said the scheme was opposed because
an airline flying direct from Singapore to Europe pays more than an
airline flying to an intermediate point and then on to Europe.
Asia Pacific Airlines said the fear was if it turns into a tit-for-tat
trade war between continents, then airlines will be caught in the
Etihad Airways voiced its opposition, announcing it will have to increase
its fuel surcharge on European flights to offset the cost of the new
The increase of USD$3 per passenger for flights into and out of Europe and
USD$0.03 cents/kg for cargo shipments will take effect for travel from 1
James Hogan, Etihad Airways president and chief executive officer said:
“As an airline we are strongly opposed to the unilateral measures imposed
by the European Union on our flights into and out of Europe, especially as
they include areas outside European airspace.
“We have invested many millions of dollars to ensure we operate a young
and highly efficient fleet but are still being penalised.”
Etihad Airways said it supports the UAE government in the development of
measures that will result in a tangible and quantifiable reduction of
This includes pursuing a global scheme led by the International Civil
Organization (IACO) to address the issue of climate change.