IATA is confident that a global aviation emissions agreement will be reached in 2016 regardless of United Nations climate talks in Paris, an IATA environment director said.
ICAO is working to develop a global market-based measures (MBM) system to address CO2 emissions from aviation. At the 2013 ICAO Assembly, governments agreed to develop the aviation MBM by the time of the 2016 ICAO Assembly so that it can be implemented in 2020.
Two working groups are progressing that MBM framework. At a media briefing in Geneva Dec. 10, IATA director, aviation environment, Michael Gill said the process was long and complex, but he believed the working groups has achieved significant progress.
“We are impressed by the quality of the discussions and note the willingness of governments from all regions of the world and on all sides of the debate to engage in these discussions,” he said. “Let’s not forget that this is the first time that agreement on such a global measure has even been attempted.”
In parallel, a significant development on the policy side has been taking place during government meetings in Paris this week at the Conference of Parties to the UN climate change convention – or COP 21 Paris. This is the largest single meeting of heads of state and government ever to take place on carbon emissions and climate change.
Gill, who was attending the talks, said there was a belief that an agreement in Paris was possible and that whatever the outcome, it would not impede progress towards a global aviation MBM.
“We believe the stars are aligned and there will be a successful outcome at the ICAO Assembly,” Gill said.
He cautioned, however, that the political side was much more sensitive than the technical side, where work was “well advanced.”
Sticking points on the political side, Gill noted, included how obligations on each individual airline would be determined and shared, and how to take into account the economic development of each geographical region. “That’s politically charged and much discussion needs to be done,” he said.
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