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Taking action to clean up aviation
A new International Aviation Climate Ambition Coalition has been launched at the COP26 climate change summit in Glasgow.
The Coalition’s member states have committed to work together to support the adoption of an ambitious global goal for international aviation CO2 emissions set by the UN’s International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and have also committed to supporting specific measures to reduce aviation emissions including sustainable aviation fuels (SAFs), the CORSIA global offsetting scheme and new aircraft technologies.
However, according to Transport & Environment (T&E), the ambitions outlined are ‘too weak to reduce flying’s climate impact.’
The declaration, signed by the UK, France and the US, among others, recognises that the number of global air passengers and cargo is expected to increase significantly over the next few decades, putting significant pressure on the planet. It calls on states to observe the Paris Agreement’s goal of holding the increase in the global average temperature to well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels.
But T&E warns that relying on ICAO and its carbon offsetting scheme to achieve net zero in the long-term will be ‘just another distraction from real measures to clean up flying in the near term.’ It is calling for individual countries to go ‘further and faster’ and to include aviation emissions in their national climate targets – something the UK, which led the declaration, committed to itself earlier this year.