AAPA speaks out against emission trading scheme
As the 2012 start date for the EU Emissions Trading Scheme gets closer, more international carriers are adding their voices to the din of criticism. The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) is the latest group to speak out, with its director general, Andrew Herdman, saying the EU has "over-reached" in introducing the scheme.
Under the policy, starting next year, airlines are to reduce emissions by 3 percent in 2012 and 5 percent annually starting in 2013. This rule would apply to all airlines flying into and out of the EU.
“The EU has over-reached and underestimated the political price it will have to pay if it insists on pressing ahead with this scheme in its current form," Herdman said in a statement. "It needs to fundamentally rethink its whole approach."
Herdman said he believes the EU should limit the application of the scheme only to flights within Europe. If the plan isn't modified in some way, he warns of "continued legal challenges and retaliatory trade measures" from foreign governments.
A number of U.S. carriers brought a case against the scheme to the European Court of Justice in July, and it's been reported that the Chinese government is also considering legal actions. According to The People's Daily, a paper associated with the Chinese government, Airbus and the Association of European Airlines (AEA) have also added their names to the list of critics. Airbus and the AEA wrote in a letter to the EU that "aviation's inclusion in EU ETS will create a trade conflict with the world's most powerful economic and political players," the paper reported.
"The last thing we need is a trade war," Herdman said. "Tit-for-tat measures would only add to the burden on the airline industry and the travelling public, without achieving any environmental benefit.”