21 Dec 2007 04:12:35
Aviation emissions cap to be put in place by 2012
A cap is set to be put in place on carbon emissions produced by airlines from 2012, following a European Union decision yesterday (December 20th).
Environment ministers from the EU nations agreed to introduce the emissions cap on airlines flying to and from the region, and not just member states.
The US has reacted angrily to the proposals, with the BBC reporting they have threatened legal action in the event of them being implemented, but UK environment secretary Hilary Benn gave a more positive response.
"This is a bold step by Europe - in the week after the Bali agreement - which shows the EU leading in the fight against dangerous climate change," he said.
"By including aviation in the EU emissions trading scheme with a tough cap, we are ensuring that airlines which do go above their limit will need to cancel out their emissions elsewhere through the trading scheme," he added.
According to figures provided by the European Commission, while aviation carbon emissions only amount to three per cent of the global total, they have increased by 87 per cent since 1990.