Brussels, 4 October 2013
The European Commission today welcomed the decision by the UN Assembly responsible for International Civil Aviation (ICAO) to decide on a global mechanism to tackle emissions from aviation. The Assembly has agreed to develop by 2016 a global market based mechanism to tackle emissions, which can come into force in 2020. The market based mechanism will be accompanied by a series of technical and operational measures to reduce emissions. With this deal, the aviation industry becomes the first international transport sector to apply a global market-based mechanism to reduce their emissions.
European Commission Vice President Kallas, Head of the EU Delegation to ICAO and EU Commissioner responsible for Transport said, "I am very pleased that after long and hard negotiations we finally have a global deal on aviation emissions. This is good news for the travelling public, good news for the aviation industry, but most importantly it is very good news for the planet. We have also avoided a damaging conflict among trading partners. We still have some detailed work to do between now and 2016. But tonight, we have demonstrated that we really mean business when it comes to dealing with aviation's environmental footprint.
EU Climate Change Commissioner Connie Hedegaard, said: ''The EU's hard work has paid off. After so many years of talks, ICAO has finally agreed to the first-ever global deal to curb aviation emissions. If it hadn't been for the EU's hard work and determination, we wouldn't have got this decision today to create a global market-based measure. What matters to us is that the aviation sector also contributes to our efforts to reduce emissions. While we would have liked more countries to accept our regional scheme, progress was made overall and we will now factor this in when, together with the member states and the European Parliament, we decide on the way forward with the EU ETS.''
The UN Assembly has agreed to develop, by 2016, a global MBM for international aviation that can start in 2020. Until then countries or groups of countries should – within certain parameters – be able to deploy MBMs.
The market based measures will go hand in hand with new procedures to promote more advanced technology, including the use of better alternative aviation fuels and to promote better procedures, including in the area of air navigation.
The agreement also puts in place a fair and equitable solution that respects the special circumstances and respective capabilities in which a number of countries find themselves.
Aviation accounts for 3% of global CO2 emissions but ICAO statistics show that international aviation CO2 emissions are forecast to increase between 4 and 6 times by 2050 from the levels of 2010.
What happens next?
In the light of this agreement, the European Commission,, in coordination with the European Parliament and the EU Member States, will now assess the decision taken today at ICAO in more detail before deciding on the next steps with respect to the EU ETS.