U.S. vs. EU ETS

Photo by inoc. Some rights reserved.

According to the New York Times, the U.S. has banded together with Canada and Mexico to show their disdain for Directive 2008/101/EC, which amends the European Union’s original Emission Trading Scheme (ETS) to include aviation activities.

Virtually all airlines with operations to, from and within the EU – including non-EU airlines –  fall under the scope of the directive, which goes into effect January 1, 2012. These airlines will need to limit their aircrafts’ carbon dioxide emissions and/or buy allowances to cover their emissions.

With projected industry costs of $3 billion a year, airline carriers everywhere are getting cranky. The U.S., Canada, and Mexico reportedly sent a joint letter to the International Civil Aviation Organization, asking them to pass a resolution preventing countries from implementing emissions trading systems that apply to other countries’ aircraft operators without express consent.

As reported by the NYT, if agreed upon, the resolution would be nonbinding. But it could add to international pressure on Europe to delay the start of the system.


The consolidated EU ETS Directive, including aviation, can be found here.

Read the European Commission’s guidelines for the monitoring and reporting of aviation activity data.

How does the directive affect you? There are some great publications on the topic in knowledgemosaic’s law firm memo library. Get some in-depth analysis and guidance here, here, and here.

One response to this post.

  1. […] hasn’t slipped by unnoticed? The European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), which was spotlighted on the Green Mien just over a year […]


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