Bloomberg News

China, India Airlines Fail to Comply With Europe’s Carbon Rules

May 15, 2012

China and India’s airlines failed to submit carbon-dioxide emissions data for 2011, rebuffing European rules that seek to expand the region’s emissions trading system to include aviation.

There has been “systematic non-reporting” of emissions to and from Europe from 10 airlines based in India and China, according to a statement on the European Commission’s website today. While airlines, brought into Europe’s carbon program in January, need to submit last year’s emissions data, there’s no obligation to hand in permits for that year.

The inclusion of flights in Europe’s ETS as of January triggered opposition from countries including the U.S., China and Russia, which said Europe should let the United Nations’ International Civil Aviation Organization decide on greenhouse- gas limits for the industry.

The Chinese and Indian airlines represent less than 3 percent of the sector’s emissions, Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said. Eight airlines in China and two in India have until mid-June to submit the data, she told journalists in Brussels today. The remaining airlines reported last year’s emissions on time to meet the March 31 deadline, the Commission said in the statement. More than 1,200 emissions reports have been submitted from airlines, it said.

The EU, home of the world’s biggest carbon trading system by traded volume, decided in 2008 that aviation would from this year become a part of its cap-and-trade plan. Airline carbon- dioxide discharges in the region doubled over two decades and international organizations failed to enact pollution curbs.

Stricter Next Year

The airlines that failed to obey the rules probably won’t be penalized and instead the European Union may become more strict next year when airlines need to hand in allowances to cover emissions, according to Deutsche Bank AG. (DBK)

“The EU will be very, very flexible,” Isabelle Curien, an analyst in Paris for the bank, said today by phone. “Member States may be unwilling to instigate an operating ban” for airlines that failed to comply. An operating ban would restrict entry of airlines into Europe.

The EU may wait until airlines need to hand in carbon allowances and credits for the first time on April 30 next year, Curien said.

International carriers will be given for free emission permits making up 85 percent of the industry cap in 2012 and will have to buy the remaining 15 percent at auctions. They can also trade between each other.

To contact the reporters on this story: Catherine Airlie in London at cairlie@bloomberg.net; Mathew Carr in London at m.carr@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lars Paulsson at lpaulsson@bloomberg.net


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