EPA makes first move toward regulating aviation emissions

On Wednesday the US Environment Protection Agency announced its findings that cause emissions from airplanes do exacerbate climate change and threaten public health. As a result of this it is now legally required to develop a set of rules to regulate the industry.

 In Brief 

  • The EPA will wait for current international negotiations on limiting aviation emissions in the to conclude before publishing its final rule. Those discussions, which are taking place within the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) began in 2009 and are expected to be completed in February 2016.
  • Each 5.5 pounds of weight reduced on an airplane means a one-ton reduction in carbon emissions per year, according to calculations by the International Air Transport Association.
  • Aviation accounts for about 2 percent of global emissions, but is among the fastest-growing sources of global greenhouse gas emissions as air travel becomes more affordable and more people travel around the world. By 2020, international aviation emissions could be 70 percent higher than in 2005, even if fuel efficiency improves by 2 percent a year, according to estimates cited by the European Commission.
  • Commercial airlines have voluntarily committed to limit the growth of their carbon emissions to 2 percent a year through 2020, then cap emission growth after that.

 In Depth 

 In the Future… 

Jeremy Smith
Jeremy Smithhttp://www.jmcsmith.com
Jeremy Smith is the editor and co-founder of Travindy. He is a writer and communications consultant working for a more responsible and sustainable tourism industry. He is the author of two books, writes a fortnightly blog on responsible tourism for World Travel Market, and provides consultancy to a wide range of companies and organisations, ranging from National Parks to individual hotels and tour operators.

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