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Emissions trading scheme on aviation activities

EESC opinion: Emissions trading scheme on aviation activities

Key points:

  • Although the amendments proposed by the Commission will have the effect of maintaining a regulatory framework specific only to European Economic Area (EEA) registered airlines operating intra-EEA flights beyond 2017, the suggested amendments pave the way for EU-led support and implementation of the non-distortive global scheme Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) as of 2020.
  • The Committee endorses the Commissions' proposal (Proposal) with some reservations. If adopted, the environmental ambitions of the EU ETS would be lower than the full scope EU ETS and such a scheme could be somehow detrimental in meeting the EU's domestic climate targets and international commitments; but at the same time, the EU would credibly demonstrate its support for the global measure so that the global mitigation impact can be pursued.
  • EU action is required to avoid distortions to competition within the single market in aviation when implementing the global market-based measure in the European Union, while making sure that CORSIA's environmental integrity is as high as possible.
  • The adoption of the Proposals is required before the end of 2017 so that the preparatory measures for implementing CORSIA can be undertaken as of beginning 2018. EU-specific regulations should be seen and amended to promote global market-based measures. The Committee urges the Council and European Parliament to maintain momentum for the timely implementation of CORSIA in a uniform and non-distortive manner.
  • The Committee supports the balanced approach as advocated by the Commission, which maintains the leverage which the Commission has built up with the EU ETS, but addresses a global issue globally, and thereby reduces the continuing risk of carbon leakage and competitive disadvantages for Europe.

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