The UK Department of Energy and Climate Change has introduced a process that will allow small emitters to opt out of compliance with the emissions trading scheme, but this applies only to static installations (ground-based industries). The option, which applies to facilities generating less than 25,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide (CO2), is not being made available to the aviation sector.
According to Neil Duffy, who runs a website to help small emitters to comply with ETS (www.ets-checklist.eu), the new opt-out is being unfairly denied to aircraft operators simply because current EU legislation precludes it from being extended to aviation. “One has to ask why the legislation was written to omit aircraft operators from this opt-out,” he commented. “Some business jet operators emit less than 100 tons annually, and have administration costs way above the cost of allowance. Further to this, no other industry has the level of standardization that aviation has, nor do they have an organization like Eurocontrol, which is able to provide complete, accurate and reliable figures, but they still need to be checked over by a third-party verifier.”