Washington meetings reaffirm opposition to EU ETS

The 17 countries attending a meeting held in Washington early last month have reaffirmed their opposition to the application of the EU ETS to non-EU carriers and say they remain committed to the actions to reduce international aviation emissions agreed in the ICAO Assembly Resolution A37-19 of 2010.

Meanwhile, the US airline trade organisation Airlines for America repeated its call, a move supported by some US politicians, for the United States government to file an Article 84 Chicago Convention complaint at ICAO against Europe over its emissions trading scheme. However, the official said no decision by the Administration had been taken. “An Article 84 is not off the table – we don’t have any immediate plans to do that, but it is always an option.”

At the same time the 17 nations were meeting in Washington, a U.S. Senate committee passed a bill authorizing the transportation secretary to bar U.S. airlines from complying with a European Union law that would require them to pay for carbon emissions on flights to and from Europe.  The measure approved by the Senate Commerce Committee will be sent to the full Senate for a vote.

The 19-member panel voted to approve an updated version of a bipartisan bill authored by Republican Senator John Thune and Democratic Senator Claire McCaskill.  Democratic Senator Barbara Boxer, a long-time advocate of mandatory curbs on carbon emissions and author of several cap-and-trade bills, said she and fellow Democratic Senator John Kerry would back the measure after Thune included compromise language.

The Thune-McCaskill bill directs the secretary of transportation to prohibit U.S. airlines from participating in the EU trading scheme to curb carbon emissions if he or she deems it in the public interest.

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