US House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted (24-Oct-2011) against US participation in the European Union’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) that would impose new emissions taxes on US and other nation's air carriers flying into and out of the EU. The “European Union Emissions Trading Scheme Prohibition Act of 2011” (HR 2594) is bipartisan legislation that prohibits US aircraft operators from participating in the ETS. The bill also instructs US officials to negotiate or take any action necessary to ensure US aviation operators are not penalised by any unilaterally imposed EU scheme. The US House of Representatives noted that there is growing international opposition to the ETS. Other nations that have voiced opposition include Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Cuba, Egypt, India, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Paraguay, Qatar, the Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Africa, the United Arab Emirates, and the member States of the Latin American Civil Aviation Commission (LACAC). Even EU Member States, including Italy, the Netherlands, France, Belgium, and Spain, are calling for postponement of the EU ETS due to confusion over its implementation and opposition and potential retaliation from other nations. [more - original PR]
US Government: “Reducing aviation emissions is a goal that is worth pursuing, but the EU’s go-it-alone approach will fly in the face of the international community and is not the way to find an international solution to an international problem. Only through international dialogue will we reach consensus on how to deal with a global challenge, but I am confident that, if our European friends will act in good faith, we will more than rise to the occasion. For the meanwhile, this bill will protect U.S. airlines and all Americans who rely on them for travel and employment from the unjust effects of the EU’s plan," Nick J. Rahall, ull Committee Ranking Democrat. Source: Company Statement, 24-Oct-2011.