European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS)

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Latest EU-ETS News

NBAA, Others Urge Foxx to Press for “Stop the Clock’ Legislation Regarding EU-ETS
Feb. 7, 2014
NBAA joined other aviation Associations last week in thanking U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx for his efforts at the Assembly of the International Civil Aviation Organization in helping reach a historic global emissions agreement. That agreement reinforced that technology, operations and infrastructure measures, which reduce emissions and benefit the flying public and the U.S. economy, are to remain the primary focus of our efforts. The agreement also confirmed that a globally-agreed, market-based measure could serve as a “gap-filler” should the global industry not be able to achieve carbon neutral growth from 2020. The groups also urged Foxx to “use your good offices and the specific negotiating authority identified in the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme Prohibition Act of 2012 (ETS Prohibition Act) to press your European counterparts to continue the stay on the extraterritorial application of the ETS and to stay pending deadlines while the legislation needed to extend the ‘stop the clock’ is being considered.” Read the full letter to Foxx.

At Aviation Hearing, Bolen Reiterates Concerns Over Sleep Apnea Changes, EU-ETS
Dec. 12, 2013
A House committee hearing last week focused on aviation planning also provided a welcome opportunity for NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen to acknowledge the need for continuing congressional engagement on two issues with serious potential ramifications for the general aviation community. In written testimony submitted for before the House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure Committee's Aviation Subcommittee on "The State of American Aviation," Bolen pointed to the industry's alarm over the FAA's new plan to mandate obstructive sleep apnea screening for some pilots prior to receiving a medical certificate. He also highlighted continuing concerns over the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS). Read more about Bolen's testimony.

EU Moves Forward on ETS Suspension
April 1, 2013
The European Union continues to move forward on its proposal to “stop the clock” for implementing its Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) on non-EU operators, with a final vote on the moratorium anticipated within the next three weeks. But for operators whose travels take them from one point to another inside Europe, the clock will not stop. Implementation of EU-ETS will take place as scheduled on April 30. The one-year moratorium was suggested in a surprise announcement by EU Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard last November. Citing progress made by ICAO in work toward a worldwide system of market-based measures aimed at reducing the aviation industry’s carbon output, Hedegaard promised to re-evaluate the moratorium after the ICAO triennial assembly in October. Listen to this week’s edition of NBAA Flight Plan podcast or read more about the status of EU-ETS.

President Signs Into Law EU-ETS Prohibition Act
December 3, 2012
President Obama on Nov. 27 signed into law S. 1956 – the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) Prohibition Act. The law sets into motion a process whereby the Secretary of Transportation is able to prohibit operators of U.S. civil aircraft from participating in EU ETS. Also mandated is the requirement that government authorities take actions necessary to hold U.S. operators harmless from the imposition of the unilaterally imposed environmental tax. While the law does not have an immediate effect, passage of the bill is a welcome development following the European Commission's recent announcement of a temporary and conditional suspension of the ETS law for certain operations. Learn More.

What do the Latest EU-ETS Changes Mean for NBAA Members?
November 19, 2012
Developments in Washington, DC and Brussels last week have had a significant impact on the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) as it is applied to aviation. While certainly not a one-two knockout combination to the greenhouse gas reduction program adopted by the EU’s 27 member nations, the past week's events are an indication not only of international resistance to the program, but of a new willingness to compromise within the highest levels of the European Union itself. Rising above all of that is the question: Just what do these developments mean for NBAA Members whose business it is to fly to Europe? Learn what it all means to NBAA Members.

Sen. Isakson Asks DOT to File Formal Complaint on EU-ETS
June 11, 2012
In response to Secretary of Transportation Ray LaHood’s testimony June 6 before a Senate hearing regarding the impact from the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme on operators in the United States, Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) asked LaHood to file a complaint with the International Civil Aviation Organization, and ask the council to intervene on the matter. "I would strongly encourage the Administration to file a formal Article 84 complaint against the EU on this issue in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)," wrote Isakson. "I believe you would find significant bipartisan support for the complaint in the House and Senate." Read more about Isakson's request.

EU-ETS 'Discriminatory' to Business Aviation, Bolen Tells Senate Committee
June 6, 2012
National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) President and CEO Ed Bolen testified today before a Senate committee that the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) "singles out a great American industry for discriminatory treatment." Calling the European scheme "fatally flawed," Bolen told members of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation that "as badly as commercial airlines are treated, non-commercial aviation is treated even worse." Read more of Bolen's testimony

Lawmaker Voices EU-ETS Concerns on Senate Floor
May 16, 2012
Sen. John Thune (R-SD) recently implored lawmakers to consider his bipartisan bill that would prevent U.S. aircraft operators flying to and from the European Union from being forced to comply with the EU's Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS), saying the measure would cause significant economic hardship to businesses. "Very simply, the unilateral imposition of such a scheme on the United States and other counties is arbitrary, unfair and a violation of international law," Thune said. "Plus, it is being done without any guarantees for environmental improvements and at a huge cost to the aviation industry and constituents we serve." Read more about the proposal.

Operators Struggle With Complexity of EU-ETS Compliance
March 19, 2012
To say the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS) is wildly unpopular outside the EU would perhaps be an understatement. Still, NBAA Members are working through the particulars of compliance and finding that, in many cases, the process is very difficult. Nowhere is that more true than in the establishment of a carbon registry account. "Operators are wading into a completely new and foreign process of opening a carbon registry account," said Adam Hartley, a regulatory services team supervisor at Universal Weather and Aviation. In this week's NBAA Flight Plan podcast, learn more about setting up a carbon registry account and NBAA's EU-ETS compliance resources.

EU-ETS News Archives

February 20, 2012
The Latest on EU-ETS Compliance: What NBAA Members Should Know
February 13, 2012
International Fallout From EU-ETS Continues
January 27, 2012
Aviation Groups Thank Clinton, LaHood for Strong Opposition to EU-ETS
January 11, 2012
As New Year Begins, Industry Confronts EU-ETS
January 2, 2012
In 2011, No Clear Resolution on EU-ETS
December 2, 2011
Report: EU-ETS Will Be Costly, Have Minimal Emissions Impact
November 23, 2011
Concerns Grow As EU-ETS Start Date Nears
November 4, 2011
Conflict Grows Over EU-ETS
October 31, 2011
Opposition Rising to European Emissions Trading Scheme
October 25, 2011
NBAA: U.S. House Soundly Rejects European Emissions Trading Scheme
September 12, 2011
NBAA Applauds House Committee for Bill Prohibiting EU-ETS in U.S.
August 29, 2011
As EU Considers Increased C02 Limits for Some in ETS, Privacy Concerns Emerge
August 19, 2011
UK Considering Public Release of EU-ETS Information
July 21, 2011
NBAA Praises Bipartisan House Bill Opposing EU-ETS
July 8, 2011
Industry Analyst: EU-ETS May Dampen Business Aviation Recovery
February 10, 2011
Eurocontrol to Launch ETS Support Facility Mid-February
January 10, 2011
What’s the Outlook for EU-ETS in 2011?
August 9, 2010
EUROCONTROL Releases Small Emitters' Tool for ETS Compliance
February 18, 2010
European Emissions Trading Scheme Now Includes Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein

What's Involved in the EU's Emissions Trading Scheme and What it Means For NBAA Members

As is widely known in the business aviation community, general aviation aircraft account for 0.6 percent of U.S. transportation carbon emissions and 0.2 percent of total global greenhouse gas emissions. The industry's continually improving record is thanks to an ongoing focus on the development of engines, aircraft and operating procedures that reduce emissions.

While the industry's record of continuing progress on carbon emissions is laudable, policymakers in the U.S. and around the world continue to closely examine aviation emissions as part of an overall review of all carbon emissions from transportation. This ongoing scrutiny has been prompted and sustained by repeated calls for limitations or reductions in carbon emissions.

Since its formation, the European Union (EU) has been considering options for an environmental program applicable to aviation. EU policymakers have settled on and are moving toward implantation of a plan for aviation known as the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS). The ETS would incorporate all flights by eligible aircraft arriving at or departing from EU airports in the EU ETS. Operator of fixed or rotary-wing aircraft over 5,700 kg (12,566 pounds) who fly to, from or within EU countries (or their territorial possessions) will be included in the EU ETS starting in 2012 (with compliance requirements that must be met prior to the 2012 date). There is an exemption for commerical aircraft operations which have fewer than 243 flights per period for three consecutive four-month periods or commercial aircraft flights with total annual emissions lower than 10,000 metric tons per year.

NBAA believes that environmental stewardship is an imperative, but also that reasonable and balanced policies should be pursued that support the industry’s twin goals of promoting the mobility and growth of business aviation while minimizing its environmental footprint. The Association has worked diligently with the European Business Aviation Association (EBAA), the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) and European regulators to help shape the rules to make them as workable as possible for business aviation, and the modifications European regulators have made to their original ETS proposal reflect the advocacy efforts from the industry.

While NBAA, EBAA, IBAC and others in the industry will continue to advocate for business aviation on ETS and other emissions policies, the expectation is that the EU's ETS program could apply to all NBAA Members conducting flights into Europe by 2012 unless the ETS is superseded by U.S. regulation (the new Administration and Congress have begun consideration of a U.S. program that may apply to aviation operations, and could impact the application of the EU's ETS on flights by U.S.-based NBAA Members into the EU). Should the European community find such a law a suitable alternative to the EU ETS for U.S. operators, those operators might not need to comply with the EU ETS. However, until that declaration has been made, operators should expect to comply with the EU requirements.