U.S. airlines and their Congressional allies have based their opposition to the European Union’s emissions trading scheme largely on the bogus contention that it amounts to an infringement of national sovereignty, according to a policy brief commissioned by the German Marshall Fund of the United States and produced by Washington, D.C.-based consultancy Climate Advisors. The new report, published on October 11, argues that international aviation rules generally allow nations to regulate flights in and out of their territories, as long as they don’t discriminate against foreign carriers.
International Civil Aviation Organization
The European Union’s so-called safety blacklist, which bans carriers from specified countries deemed to have inadequate safety regulation standards, has been condemned as “misguided” by Tony Tyler, director general and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA). During last month’s Central Asian summit on aviation safety, Tyler highlighted the bans on summit host Kazakhstan and its neighbor Kyrgyzstan. Carriers from these countries are banned from operating in EU airspace, with the partial exception of Kazakhstan’s Air Astana, which can operate only some of its fleet.
Nineteen U.S. aviation organizations–including NBAA, NATA, AOPA and GAMA–sent a joint letter to President Obama yesterday urging him to “challenge the inclusion of international aviation under the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) by initiating an Article 84 proceeding in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).” Invoking Article 84 allows the ICAO council to decide disputes that cannot be settled between member states.
Kurt Edwards was named as the new director general at the International Business Aviation Council late last week. IBAC is the international non-governmental organization that represents the interests of business aviation operators from around the world in international forums, primarily ICAO. According to IBAC, Edwards has “substantial experience in international aviation issues” at the FAA, where he led agency outreach efforts while based in Brussels, Paris and Montreal. He replaces Donald Spruston, who is retiring after leading the organization since 1999.
In a July 19 address to the African Ministerial Conference on Aviation, ICAO Council president Roberto Kobeh Gonzalez attempted to calm some of the world’s concerns about aviation safety in the region.
The long-simmering dispute over Europe’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) heated up after a U.S. Senate committee advanced legislation that would empower the secretary of transportation to prohibit American airlines from participating in the carbon cap-and-trade construct.
If implemented through global agreement rather than unilaterally by the European Union (EU), an emissions trading scheme (ETS) could prove effective in reducing aviation’s environmental footprint, according to Tony Tyler, director general and CEO of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).
As the November deadline approaches for the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to assess the Indian government’s record in managing aviation, gaps in the country’s safety regulations could lead the FAA to downgrade India to Category 2 status, according to a report issued recently by the Center for Asia Pacific Aviation (CAPA).
Russia’s action against Finland’s national carrier, Finnair, significantly raises the stakes in the standoff between the European Union (EU) and opponents of its emissions trading scheme (ETS). The European Commission (EC) protested the move, saying that Russia is now in breach of its obligations as a new member of the World Trade Organization.
Opponents of the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) were heartened last month when the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) announced it expects to have a draft proposal on how to mitigate carbon dioxide from aircraft by next March.
ICAO Secretary-General Raymond Benjamin said on June 18 that the governing council of the United Nations body that oversees civil aviation worldwide would discuss “market-based measures” to reduce emissions the following week.