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Europe’s Attack on Aviation

Reader A.Z. sends in this AP piece. . .

Europe Gives Airlines Room on Emissions

A European Union program aimed at slowing climate change will allow airlines to emit 85 percent of their carbon dioxide limits free in the hope they will use the money to modernize their fleets, an official said Monday.

The European Union’s existing cap-and-trade system limits the carbon dioxide emissions of power plants and big factories in the bloc by issuing permits for each ton of carbon they can emit. Each company is allocated permits to emit a set amount of carbon dioxide.

They can buy extra credits if they exceed that limit; if they emit less, they can sell credits.Next year, all airlines flying to and from Europe will be brought into the program, which is currently being challenged in court by some American carriers.

Jos Delbeke, the European Union’s director general for climate action, said Monday that carriers would be allowed to emit 85 percent of their limit – or cap – free for the first year to ease the economic impact on the industry. The cap is set at 97 percent of the average aviation emissions from 2004 to 2006.For the 2013-20 period, the cap will fall to 95 percent of that number, and the free allowances will decline to 82 percent.

Mr. Delbeke said airlines would be allowed to pass on to travelers the additional cost of those permits. He estimated the per ticket cost would be 2 to 12 euros ($2.70 to $16.20).The European Union’s climate action commissioner, Connie Hedegaard, said the free allowances would save the aviation industry more than 20 billion euros over the next decade.

“With these potential revenues, airlines could invest in modernizing their fleets, improving fuel efficiency and using non-fossil aviation fuel,” she said.

And writes. . .

Time to focus a bit on European attempts to tax international aviation via carbon trading – contrary to international aviation conventions.  Note the language that ALLOWS airlines to emit 85% of limit for free in hopes airlines will use that money to modernize fleets. Note to bureaucrats…”Carbon” emissions are directly proportional to fuel consumption. Airlines are fully motivated to modernize their fleets to reduce the cost of fuel use – the single largest cost they face. New aircraft are much >10% more fuel efficient than those they replace. The 15% of “emissions” that are not “free” reduce airline resources to do exactly what the climate change zealots want them to do – invest in new equipment.

A.Z. is correct.