EU Seeks Ideas on How to Get Airlines to Pollute Less
BRUSSELS The European Commission launched an eight-week internet discussion Friday asking individual Europeans -- and those active in aviation -- what should be done to force airlines to pollute less.
In the European Union, aircraft emissions of carbon dioxide, which are blamed for eroding the earth's protective ozone layer, rose by nearly 70 percent in the 1990s, the European Commission said in a statement.
A return-flight for two persons from London to New York "produces about as much CO2 as an average passenger car in the EU does in a whole year," it added.
The Commission said the expansion of aviation has a serious environmental impact that is bound to get worse. World passenger air traffic grew by 14 percent in 2004 and the world aircraft fleet is expected to double by 2020, it added.
The EU is studying how to get airlines to pollute less, possibly by imposing special taxes on plane fuel, tickets and departures. It said it was looking for industry views as well as those of individual Europeans.
Source: Associated Press