IATA and Boeing welcome ICAO aircraft emissions decision

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Boeing 777

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Boeing have welcomed the decision by representatives at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to agree a CO2 emissions efficiency Standard for commercial aircraft.

The new environmental measure was unanimously recommended by the 170 international experts on ICAO’s Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP) on Monday February 8, paving the way for its ultimate adoption by the UN agency’s 36-State Governing Council.

The Standard, which has taken six years of painstaking negotiation and technical work, will come into force from 2020, will ensure that CO2 emissions from new aircraft will have to meet a minimum baseline (defined as a maximum fuel burn per flight kilometre which must not be exceeded). From 2023 this will also apply to existing aircraft designs still in manufacture at that date.

IATA’S director general and chief executive officer, Tony Tyler says: “The agreement of this CO2 Standard is a vital and very welcome development. The CO2 Standard does not solve aviation’s climate challenge on its own, but it is an important element in our comprehensive strategy for tackling carbon emissions.

“The next milestone will be the implementation of a market-based measure to address CO2 emissions, which we hope to see agreed at the ICAO Assembly in September. Our shared industry goals are for carbon-neutral growth from 2020, and for a 50 per cent cut in CO2 emissions by 2050.

“This CO2 standard is a significant milestone towards those targets, and proves that the industry and the world’s governments are working together to find a sustainable future for aviation.”

Boeing says it commends the agreement on the first global standard for aircraft carbon-dioxide emissions and supports the move.

The manufacturer explains: “Boeing is fully committed to meeting the new CO2 emissions standard announced by ICAO. This agreement represents real progress beyond the substantial industry achievements already made to reduce aviation emissions, with more steps ahead. The new standard is ambitious and will become part of the certification process applied to every airplane before delivery based on the ICAO schedule.

“We have made significant investments to improve the efficiency and environmental performance of our products and will continue to do so. Environmental goals are aligned with our business goals, as greater fuel efficiency and lower emissions are top priorities for our commercial customers.

“We believe the ICAO standard will have the intended results of ensuring older aircraft are replaced by newer, more efficient aircraft that will further reduce fuel use and carbon emissions.

“Our new commercial airplanes have been designed to meet and even exceed challenging emission requirements. The 787 Dreamliner family reduces fuel use and CO2 emissions by 20 to 25 percent compared to airplanes it replaces.”

ICAO Council president, Olumuyiwa Benard Aliu says the goal of this process is to ensure that when the next generation of aircraft types enter service, there will be guaranteed reductions in international CO2 emissions.

“Our sector presently accounts for under two percent of the world’s annual CO2 emissions, but we also recognise that the projected doubling of global passengers and flights by 2030 must be managed responsibly and sustainably,” Aliu adds.