Next Commission urged to launch ‘aviation package’

(EurActiv, 21 Jun 2019) The next European Commission should make curbing aviation emissions a priority in its work programme for the next five years, according to lawmakers at a special summit on Thursday (20 June) dedicated to taxing flights.

At a conference organised by the Dutch government, State Secretary for Finance Menno Snel and French MEP Karima Delli both urged the incoming EU executive not to shy away from aviation’s environmental impact but rather to make it one of its priorities.

Flying is responsible for 3% of the EU’s direct emissions and 2% of global output. If it were a country, it would rank in the top ten of emitters, according to EU statistics.

“The Commission should present an aviation package proposal, to include social and environmental issues, and include it in its work programme,” Delli, the current head of the Parliament’s transport committee, suggested.

Snel, who hosted the event, warned that “aviation is growing faster than any other transport mode” and reiterated his government’s position that taxes of some form should be part of the solution.

Jet fuel is currently tax-exempt under an international convention dating back to the 1940s but countries are starting to question the logic of the agreement. Snel explained that the convention does not necessarily exempt fuel loaded on a plane pre-departure.

A new report by the Commission revealed that a tax could cut emissions by 11% and generate revenues of €27 billion every year.

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EurActiv, 21 Jun 2019: Next Commission urged to launch ‘aviation package’