Greening measures will add around 8% to airline costs, EU estimates

(EurActiv, 1 Oct 2021) Environmental regulations aimed at cutting the carbon footprint of aviation will increase the cost of flying by around 8% by 2050, according to the European Commission.

The EU executive tabled a package of energy and climate laws in July this year, aiming to halve the EU’s carbon emissions by the end of the decade before reaching net-zero by 2050.

Several of those are focused on the aviation sector, such as plans to scrap the tax-free status of kerosene, and phasing out free CO2 permits for flights covered by the EU’s carbon market. Another flagship measure is a mandate that jets refuelling at EU airports uplift a set percentage of sustainable aviation fuels (SAFs).

SAFs, which are made from waste-based biofuels and electro-fuels, are significantly more expensive than kerosene. And that is likely to be reflected in the price of airline tickets.

“It’s clear that there is going to be a price impact” from EU proposals to green the aviation sector, said Filip Cornelis, aviation director at the European Commission’s transport department.

“We’ve calculated that the SAF mandate on its own will increase the fuel cost for airlines by about 3% by 2030, with an impact on ticket prices of about 1%,” said Cornelis who was speaking at a online event hosted by EURACTIV on Tuesday (28 September).

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EurActiv, 1 Oct 2021: Greening measures will add around 8% to airline costs, EU estimates