Gail (29 Nov 2011)
"Cooperation or Imminent Conflict?"

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With clock ticking, EU urged to change course on ETS

The push against non-EU airlines' inclusion in the EU's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) continued Thursday at the Latin American and Caribbean Air Transport Assn. (ALTA) Airline Leaders Forum in Rio de Janeiro, where a US official accused EU governments of "undermining" global efforts to control aviation carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.

Considering that the US and many other nations agree with the EU's end goal of tracking and controlling aviation CO2 emissions, the EU approach is counterproductive, she said during a luncheon address.

Including non-EU airlines in the ETS is "the wrong way to pursue the right objective," she said. "I can go on at length about the deficiencies of the ETS … Flights from Latin America and the US West Coast to the EU would be particularly hard hit."

Nevertheless, airlines can't ignore EU regulations, cautioned IATA DG and CEO Tony Tyler. "If nothing changes [by January], airlines will have to comply," he said during a roundtable discussion at the ALTA forum. "They'll have no choice." He added that it "would be crazy" for US carriers to scrap transatlantic flying over the ETS.

It will get "interesting" if a bill recently passed by the US House of Representatives to prohibit US airlines from participating in the ETS actually became law, Tyler said, noting that US airlines "can't comply with both" (ATW Daily News, Nov. 3).

The bill will now be considered by the U.S. Senate. President Obama supports the bill, so it is likely to be passed.

Tyler said the sooner the EU resolves the controversy over the ETS, "the less damage will be done." While acknowledging that there are "no public signs" the EU is backing down (ATW Daily News, Nov. 7). 

'A Matter Of Life And Death'

November 28, 2011

Climate Conference Durban

Climate Conference Opens, Focuses On Emissions Cut

DURBAN, South Africa — Global warming already is causing suffering and conflict in Africa, from drought in Sudan and Somalia to flooding in South Africa, President Jacob Zuma said Monday, urging delegates at an international climate conference to look beyond national interests for solutions.


U.S. says Kyoto Protocol not on its Durban agenda

November 23, 2011

WASHINGTON, Nov. 22 (Xinhua) -- The Kyoto Protocol was not up for discussion for the United States in the new round of UN climate change talks in South Africa next week, a U.S. official said Tuesday.

"Kyoto is not on the table for the U.S," Todd Stern, U.S. special envoy for climate change, told reporters at a press briefing. However, the U.S. "don't see the Kyoto being a logjam," Stern said.

Kyoto's first commitment period ends on Dec. 31, 2012.

EU Demand for Road Map to Climate Treaty Complicates Talks

November 28, 2011

Nov. 28 (Bloomberg) -- The European Union’s demand for a road map leading to the next legally-binding global warming treaty raises a hurdle that may snarl negotiations at the United Nations climate conference this week.

Officials in Brussels indicate they’re “planning to hold out and play hard ball, ”.

The U.S. has signaled it opposes the EU plan. Todd Stern, the State Department’s climate envoy, told reporters in a Nov. 18 briefing in Arlington, Virginia that it’s “premature” to make promises about the legal form of a climate agreement before seeing its contents. U.S. officials are scheduled to brief journalists in Durban today.


Mid-Point - March 21st 2013

God Bless,