The European Commission has today laid the foundations for aviation to be fully included in the EU’s emissions trading system from January 1 next year.
Using historical aircraft emissions, the EC has worked out the number of allowances that will be available from 2012.
Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action, said: ‘”Emissions from aviation are growing faster than from any other sector, and all forecasts indicate they will continue to do so under business-as-usual conditions. Firm action is needed. By publishing the data on which allocations will be based, we prepare for the full inclusion of aviation in the emissions trading system.”
The EC looked at the years 2004-2006 and calculated that the average annual emissions for this period from aviation was 219,476,343 tonnes of CO2. This represented emissions from all flights that would be covered by the EU ETS to and from European airports.
Based on this figure, the number of aviation allowances to be created in 2012 amounts to 212,892,052 tonnes of CO2, and the allowances from 2013 onwards will be 208,502,525 tonnes.
EU emissions from aviation have almost doubled since 1990. It is estimated that one passenger flying from Brussels to New York and back in economy class generates around 800 kg of CO2.
From the start of 2012, some 4,000 aircraft operators arriving and departing in the EU will be covered by the EU ETS. Aviation represents around 10% of greenhouse gas emissions covered by the EU ETS.