The European Parliament's environment committee today voted to reject an agreement revising how the aviation sector is included in the EU emissions trading scheme. The Greens had criticised the agreement, which would exclude international aviation from the EU's emissions trading scheme for 4 years, and welcomed the outcome of the vote. Commenting on the outcome, Green climate change spokesperson Satu Hassi (MEP, Finland) stated:
"MEPs have today voted to set the record straight and ensure international flights are not let off the hook for their climate change impact. The agreement rejected today by the environment committee would have excluded international aviation from the emissions trading scheme for another 4 years, which would mean another 4 years of growth in airline emissions, undermining the emissions reductions from most other EU sectors.
"The Greens pushed for today's rejection and will now again advocate towards EU governments and the Parliament to revise their agreement and ensure all flights are covered by the emissions trading scheme. We will also urge the adoption of provisions ensuring that revenues from the auctioning of emissions permits will be used for climate protection purposes, including international climate aid.
"The original legislation including aviation in the EU's emissions trading scheme covers one-third of global aviation emissions; it would be reckless to dismantle this effective climate policy instrument in exchange for a vague promise on a global scheme in the distant future without guarantees of environmental integrity or ambition. The latest signs from the International Civil Aviation Organisation give little hope that a meaningful global instrument to reduce emissions from aviation could be agreed, adding to the arguments for the EU to push ahead.”