European Climate Commission stated the EU Emissions Trading Scheme is fully in compliance with international law and it is confident that the European Court of Justice (ECJ) will side with it over the inclusion of aviation in the scheme (Bloomberg, 04-Jul-2011). The European Union has no intention of withdrawing the relevant legislation. The EU stated that ‘equivalent measures’ to reduce aviation emissions are the only exceptions it would consider when making exemptions. Under the ETS, 82% of the 216 million tonnes of airline CO2 emission allowances making up the industry cap would be allocated for free. 15% would be auctioned and the final 3% allocated to special reserve for later distribution to fast-growing airlines and new entrants. ECJ is reportedly due to present its opinion on the case in early Oct-2011.
European Climate Commission has no intention to back away from ETS
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Europe's big five airline groups embrace disruption via digital innovation; some more than others
Many of Europe's leading airline groups are acknowledging the importance of establishing dedicated incubator and/or accelerator programmes to innovate in digital technology. On 24-Apr-2017 IAG announced that it had invested in two new technology companies – Esplorio and Vchain Tech. These are the first two investments under its Hangar 51 accelerator programme in partnership with L Marks, an innovation specialist and early stage investor.
IAG's investments followed easyJet's announcement earlier this year that its partnership with the incubator Founders Factory had selected two travel startups for its accelerator programme. The Lufthansa Group established its Innovation Hub in 2014 and started a new partnership with Californian startup investor ‘Plug and Play’ in 2016. While these three groups chose external partners, Ryanair has its inhouse Labs team, set up in 2014. Air France-KLM is alone among Europe's big five airline groups in not having a distinct and dedicated digital incubator/accelerator programme, but it has recognised digital's strategic importance.
Much of the airlines' rhetoric concerning these developments suggests that they are trying to associate themselves with the forces of disruption, but this will take more than rhetoric. CAPA has argued previously that the airline industry has been slow to prepare for disruption, but some are at least making a start.
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