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Fri, Apr 18, 2014

NEWS & ARTICLES FROM THE NET

Shuttle diplomacy under way on global aviation emissions deal
Reuters, 22 July 2013 - Diplomatic talks on a deal to curb global aviation greenhouse gas emissions have intensified recently as EU and US officials try to stave off the threat of a trade war. Peter Liese, a member of the European Parliament from the conservative German Christian-Democratic Union, led a delegation to meet with Obama administration officials in Washington last week to discuss the issue. ICAO, the United Nations' civil aviation body, has until September to complete a resolution on a market-based plan that would curb rising greenhouse gas emissions from global airlines. Should it fail, the EU could try to re-impose an emissions trading system that was postponed to give ICAO time to devise a global approach. Liese sees only a 50 per cent chance the ICAO talks can deliver a deal strong enough to avoid a revival of the law and avoid threats of a trade war. Read more ...

Winging it: EU researchers look for novel ways to cut aircraft noise
EurActiv, June 2013 - As jet engines grow quieter, European researchers are turning to other parts of aircraft to reduce noise to spare those living near airports and to make the final moments before landing more comfortable for passengers. Researchers working with financial support from the EU's CleanSky programme are experimenting with designs that could one day replace hinged flaps on aircraft wings, creating a continuous surface that would reduce noise and fuel consumption. It could take years before such developments are ready for commercial use. But Martin Lehmann, a researcher at the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany, says "the first impressions are quite good" that 'gapless' wings could one day improve the environmental footprint of aviation. Read more ...

Ryanair CEO: Drop the 'nonsensical' CO2 tax and let airlines save Europe
Business Insider, June 2013 - The European Union's emission trading scheme (ETS) as it applies to airlines is "nonsensical", Michael O'Leary, CEO of Ryanair, Europe‚Äôs biggest airline, said at at the Paris Air Show. Because China, the United States, and other "sensible economies", in O'Leary's view, have resisted participating, the rules are applied most stringently to airlines operating short-haul flights in Europe - including Ryanair. He accused "incompetent European politicians" of "taxing Europe's consumers so that they can do something about climate change," adding, "Only in Europe would you get that kind of stupidity." Read more ...

Is jet-setting compatible with a safe climate?
Vancouver Observer, May 2013 - The newspaper's climate change columnist blogs on why he joined the 'slow travel' movement about six years ago when he quit flying. "Jet travel lost its appeal for me when I realised the oversized climate damage caused by jet travel coupled with the industry's refusal to do anything meaningful about it," he writes, presenting data to support his claims. "So far, the lack of pressure from customers and politicians has allowed this industry to keep their massive climate pollution completely unregulated and surging past dangerous levels. I understand the benefits of flying as much as the next person. I flew growing up. I felt entitled to it and reliant on it. But, barring a true emergency, I plan to continue boycotting jet travel and I have no regrets about this decision." The blog drew a big response from both sides of the argument. Read more ...