EUROPEAN COURT OF JUSTICE HEARS ETS COMPLAINTS

Dino D'Amore
By Dino D'Amore July 6, 2011 14:06

EUROPEAN COURT OF JUSTICE HEARS ETS COMPLAINTS

The Air Transport Association of America, together with American Airlines and the United Continental group, told the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg yesterday that the European Union should not be allowed to extend its emissions trading scheme (ETS) to foreign airlines from January 2012.

The EU insists it will not amend its rules and claims the ETS will only amount to a few extra euros per ticket. Foreign airlines argue the eventual cost will be much higher, estimating it could cost the industry €1.1bn ($1.5bn) in the first year, and substantially more in following years. The US government and China have opposed the plan.

ATA lawyers told the court that a US airline flying from San Francisco to London would be subject to EU emissions rules from the moment it started to taxi in San Francisco, even though only 9% of its emissions would occur in EU airspace.

“It is astonishing that a US airline must acquire an EU licence to cover its emissions at a US airport, or in US airspace, but that is precisely what the ETS requires,” they said.

The lawyers went onto argue that a global agreement was needed rather than “unilateral and piecemeal regulation”.

An advisory opinion on the ATA case is expected before the end of the year.

Dino D'Amore
By Dino D'Amore July 6, 2011 14:06
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