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France Supports Cap On Airline Carbon Emissions

The aviation industry uses environmentally-damaging fossil fuels "free of taxation and we can no longer ignore its ecological imprint," French President Nicolas Sarkozy said.
by Staff Writers
Paris (AFP) June 26, 2007
French President Nicolas Sarkozy said Tuesday he supported calls to set ceilings on carbon dioxide emissions from airlines, arguing that their ecological imprint could no longer be ignored. The European Union is considering plans to limit carbon emissions from airlines from 2011 to step up the fight against global warming, but the proposal has run into opposition from the United States.

"I am in favor of applying quotas for CO2 emissions to air transport," said Sarkozy at the unveiling of a new section at Paris' Charles de Gaulle airport that will accomodate the new Airbus A380 superjumbo.

"We are obviously not going to apply this only to European companies: On a given destination, all airlines must be concerned or none."

Sarkozy, who took office six weeks ago, said that caps on carbon emissions would encourage the development of cleaner technology and a more balanced use of various modes of transport.

"The unprecedented development of air transport ... has contributed to the unity of Europe, to exchanges and contacts between cultures," he said.

The aviation industry uses environmentally-damaging fossil fuels "free of taxation and we can no longer ignore its ecological imprint," he said.

While aircraft emissions of carbon dioxide only account for around three percent of the global total, they have increased by 87 percent since 1990, according to the European Commission in Brussels.

The push to cut emissions from aircraft has intensified as the number of low-fare airlines is growing rapidly across Europe.

EU transport ministers earlier this month agreed on a proposal that would force airlines to reduce their emissions or buy "carbon dioxide credits" from other industries.

But US officials have warned that the European Union may be violating trade laws if it imposes new emissions regulations on non-European airlines.

Source: Agence France-Presse

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