Europe Moves to Cap Airline Emissions:

The New York Times reports that European officials are moving ahead with plans to impose caps on greenhouse gas emissions from air travel. Airlnes have been exempt from Europe's carbon dioxide cap-and-trade progrma, but that exemption could end in 2011. If this plan goes through, the costs are likely to be reflected in higher airline ticket prices, at least in Europe.

The international air transport group said that Europe's proposal could still cost airlines globally up to 2.9 billion euros ($3.8 billion) a year to buy allowances starting in 2012, when the rules are expected to cover all flights in and out of the union.

But European officials said that airlines should be able to pass much of the extra costs on to passengers, who would face increases in ticket prices of $2 to $12 for a trip within the European Union over the next decade. Officials said a return flight to New York might cost an additional $10 to more than $50, depending on how much individual airlines would have to pay for extra carbon allowances.

Jeff Shultz (mail):
Which, realistically, is a minor price increase percentage-wise on a ticket.

And if we're lucky, perhaps more people will fly to Hawaii or stay in the USA for their vacations instead.
12.21.2006 2:28pm
BGates (mail) (www):
How do they count the emissions caused by young people in the French suburbs setting cars on fire?
12.21.2006 2:44pm
Nathan Hall (mail):
Of course, this will also raise the price of carbon allowances overall.
12.21.2006 3:09pm
cirby (mail):
Let's see... carbon exemption ends in 2011.

The (somewhat more fuel-efficient than their current models and therefore less carbon producing) Airbus A350 goes on sale in about 2013, and the (somewhat more fuel efficient than the 747) A380 will supposedly be in full production by then.

Naah. Just a coincidence.
12.21.2006 3:21pm
Eli Rabett (www):
It also limits injection of water vapor into the upper troposphere and stratosphere. That has equally important implications
12.21.2006 11:07pm
If only they could limit the emissions of EU politicians and bureaucrats.
12.22.2006 2:17am
Victor Krueger (mail):
They estimate ticket price increase of $10-$50. I figure it would be more like $100-$500, since I assume they radically lowballed their estimate.

I don't think Norway is a member of the EU. That could make Norway a popular transfer point for transatlantic travel. People could fly to/from Norway and take surface transport between Norway and the rest of Europe, since Norway wouldn't be putting that tax on air travel.
12.22.2006 5:21am
happy lee (mail):
When I was in Europe last summer I got a price quote for a quick hop between Vienna and Rome. The ticket was $100 or so. The taxes were $150. That's plain nuts. Europe is doomed. Farewell.
12.22.2006 8:35pm
More likely it's an attempt to cap not emissions, but airlines. I smell protectionism.
12.22.2006 10:28pm