The European Commission today presented its legislative proposal to defer by one year the requirement for airlines to surrender emission allowances for flights into and out of Europe. This means that the EU would not require allowances to be surrendered in April 2013 for emissions from flights operated during the whole of 2012. Flights between European airports will continue to be fully covered by the legislation.
This formal proposal follows the Commission's statement on 12 November announcing the intention to put on hold the enforcement of the inclusion of aviation in the EU ETS in relation to flights to and from non-European countries until after the ICAO General Assembly next autumn.
The formal proposal, which should be agreed by early 2013, will be submitted to the European Parliament and the Council and is subject to the ordinary legislative procedure. In the event that the legislative process takes longer, airlines which have either not received free allowances, or have returned free allowances received in 2012 for cancellation, should not expect enforcement activities to be taken against them by Member States in respect of reporting or surrendering emissions for flights to or from third countries and airports in the EU and closely connected areas.