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Civil aviation mourns the passing of Assad Kotaite, ICAO leader, diplomat and visionary (relevance: 100%, date: Mar 3, 2014)
Mon 3 Mar 2014 - Universally recognised as one of the most prominent and respected figures in the world of civil aviation, Dr Assad Kotaite, Council President Emeritus of ICAO, died on 27 February at the age of 89. His career with ICAO began in 1953, and from 1956 to 1970 he was the Representative of Lebanon on the Council of ICAO. In 1970, he was appointed Secretary General of ICAO and then elected President of the Council for eleven successive mandates - from 1976 until his retirement 30 years later in 2006. His tenure is the longest among senior executives in the history of the United Nations system. His environmental involvement included overseeing the development of the Committee on Aircraft Noise, which eventually became the Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection, and the associated introduction of environmental standards by ICAO. Chris Lyle remembers a giant of aviation and a mentor to many.

Japanese airline ANA announces environmental ground initiatives on de-icing fluids and courtesy vehicles (relevance: 80.9%, date: Feb 24, 2011)
Thu 24 Feb 2011 - All Nippon Airways (ANA) has placed a major order for what is claimed to be the world's first de-icing fluid based on glycol from a sustainable source. The DFsustain de-icing fluid is manufactured by UK-based Kilfrost, which has been supplying the international aviation industry with de-icing and anti-icing fluids for over 75 years. It has developed the de-icing fluid using the Susterra propanediol non-petroleum alternative glycol created by DuPont Tate and Lyle BioProducts. The product is a corn sugar-derived glycol, which Kilfrost says is not only sustainable but also completely recyclable. As part of the Japanese government-backed Hydrogen Highway Project, ANA is to introduce fuel cell electric vehicles into its fleet of passenger courtesy cars and a two-month trial is now in progress.

Kyoto v. Chicago: ICAO debates how to apply the principle of Common But Differentiated Responsibilities to aviation (relevance: 62.5%, date: May 18, 2009)
Mon 18 May 2009 - The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) set up the Group on International Aviation and Climate Change (GIACC) in 2007 to consider all options available to address aviation's contribution to climate change. It was tasked to develop and recommend to the ICAO Council "an aggressive Programme of Action based upon consensus". The 15 members of GIACC convene at the end of this month for a fourth and final meeting but one issue in particular has proved a stubborn obstacle so far in reaching an accord. Chris Lyle examines the underlying conflict between the basic principles that underpin ICAO and its sister UN agency UNFCCC and suggests a way forward.

A way forward in achieving an acceptable global aviation emissions mitigation framework (relevance: 57.9%, date: Jul 16, 2008)
Wed 16 July 2008 - The search for an international consensus to tackle the problem of aviation greenhouse gas emissions has so far proved elusive. The UN agency charged with developing a global framework of mitigation measures and targets, ICAO, is attempting to reach an accord to put before the UNFCCC Copenhagen conference in December 2009. Chris Lyle analyses the issues and offers some thoughts on a way forward.

Dealing with aviation’s carbon challenge in the lead up to the Paris climate summit (relevance: 54.5%, date: Mar 27, 2015)
Fri 13 Mar 2015 - There is a considerable 'wedge gap' between the continuing growth of CO2 emissions from international air transport and their mitigation from technological and operational improvements and the use of alternative fuels. In a decision to address this gap, the ICAO Assembly in 2013 agreed that the Organization should develop a global scheme on market-based measures (MBMs) for consideration by its next Assembly in 2016 and intended implementation from 2020. The critical meeting of the UNFCCC to be held in Paris in December this year will review progress by ICAO and may provide new direction. Chris Lyle discusses this agenda and emphasises a need for more far-reaching and better directed efforts towards a meaningful price on air transport’s carbon emissions.

How silos can be bridged to achieve a global accord on market-based measures for mitigating aviation carbon emissions (relevance: 52.6%, date: Jun 10, 2013)
Mon 10 June 2013 - In October 2012, WWF (the World Wide Fund for Nature), concerned with the contribution of aviation emissions to climate change, convened a high-level aviation stakeholders group to "generate new perspectives, identify policy options and trade-offs, and find areas of consensus" in addressing air transport carbon emissions. The exercise was designed to provide helpful input to ICAO and its member States in their ongoing negotiations towards a global accord on mitigation of international aviation emissions. Participants included government ministers and officials from developed and developing countries with responsibilities for aviation, transportation, tourism and the environment; global, regional and national aviation industry representatives; the tourism sector; and NGOs. Chris Lyle, an invited stakeholder straddling air transport and tourism, gives his individual take on the exercise so far and the next steps.

Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia go in search of opportunities for locally-produced aviation biofuels (relevance: 52.1%, date: Mar 16, 2016)
Wed 16 Mar 2016 - Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia have joined forces to investigate the options for developing locally-produced aviation biofuels and have issued a Request for Information (RFI) to potential interested parties. The trans-Tasman alliance partners say they are looking to develop a sustainable aviation biofuel supply in the region that delivers environmental, social and economic benefits. With a test flight in December 2008, Air New Zealand became the world's first airline to use a second-generation sustainable aviation biofuel. The two-hour Boeing 747 flight used a 50/50 blend of jatropha oil sourced from Africa and India in one of its four engines and the airline had ambitions for a major uptake of sustainable aviation fuels that did not materialise. Virgin Australia too has announced sustainable biofuel initiatives in the past, including a Western Australia venture involving biomass sourced from mallee trees.

Beyond CORSIA: Towards a robust strategy for mitigation of international air transport emissions (relevance: 51.3%, date: Jul 24, 2017)
Mon 24 July 2017 - Last October, ICAO's Assembly adopted a framework for the global Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), a market-based measure to add to the 'basket' of technical and operational emissions mitigation measures already in hand. CORSIA is being designed as the primary tool towards an aspirational goal of carbon-neutral growth (CNG) of international aviation worldwide from 2020, with full effectiveness between 2027 and 2035. Even with full implementation, however, ICAO's basket of measures will not actually produce a reduction in global aviation emissions, which will continue to grow. For more ambitious countries, Chris Lyle proposes a more stringent but complementary approach, using the CORSIA database and monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) procedures directly within the compass of the Paris Agreement.

Rio, Kyoto, Brussels and Chicago: Reconciling principles related to international air transport emissions (relevance: 49.8%, date: Aug 1, 2012)
Fri 27 July 2012 – Last month’s Rio+20 summit was notable for its lack of ambition and goals although it did reaffirm the principle of ‘common but differentiated responsibilities’ (CBDR), despite recorded objections from Japan and the United States. The principle evolved under the Kyoto Protocol into responsibility for pursuing limitation or reduction of GHGs falling on the industrialised States, not the developing world. Reconciling this with the ICAO non-discrimination principle has proved extremely difficult in moves towards a global agreement through the UN agency on mitigating international aviation emissions. However, as an ICAO Ad hoc Working Group makes progress on an all-important market-based mechanism to limit the growth of net emissions, consensus needs to be found on a global model that reflects the differing circumstances of States. The concept of differentiation by route grouping has come under consideration at ICAO. Chris Lyle (right) explains how this might wor

Rio, Kyoto, Brussels and Chicago: Reconciling principles related to international air transport emissions (relevance: 49.8%, date: Jul 27, 2012)
Fri 27 July 2012 – Last month’s Rio+20 summit was notable for its lack of ambition and goals although it did reaffirm the principle of ‘common but differentiated responsibilities’ (CBDR), despite recorded objections from Japan and the United States. The principle evolved under the Kyoto Protocol into responsibility for pursuing limitation or reduction of GHGs falling on the industrialised States, not the developing world. Reconciling this with the ICAO non-discrimination principle has proved extremely difficult in moves towards a global agreement through the UN agency on mitigating international aviation emissions. However, as an ICAO Ad hoc Working Group makes progress on an all-important market-based mechanism to limit the growth of net emissions, consensus needs to be found on a global model that reflects the differing circumstances of States. The concept of differentiation by route grouping has come under consideration at ICAO. Chris Lyle (right) explains how this might wor

Mitigating international air transport emissions through a global measure: Time for some lateral thinking (relevance: 49.7%, date: Feb 6, 2014)
Thu, 6 Feb 2014 - The ICAO Assembly last October reached what was hailed as a "historic agreement" on market-based measures (MBMs) to fill the 'wedge gap' between the continuing growth of CO2 emissions from international air transport and their mitigation from technological and operational improvements and the use of alternative fuels. This accord was essentially a decision for ICAO to develop a global MBM scheme for consideration by the next Assembly in 2016 and intended implementation from 2020. However, the relevant climate change resolution couched this in terms that offer several loopholes, with continuing fundamental differences on both the goal of carbon-neutral growth from 2020 and guiding principles. The resolution was also subject to numerous 'reservations', a provision whereby individual States indicate they will not commit to a clause or clauses. Chris Lyle (above) takes a 'big picture' look at the agreement in the context of the geopolitical influences at work, and suggest

European airlines nervous as international demands for Europe to exclude foreign airlines from EU ETS continue to grow (relevance: 47.4%, date: Aug 19, 2011)
Fri 19 Aug 2011 - Trade associations representing Europe's leading network and regional carriers have called on the European Commission to urgently address the growing international pressure, particularly from the United States, for the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) to drop the inclusion of airlines from outside Europe. The Association of European Airlines (AEA) said that with just five months before the start there was now considerable uncertainty on the scheme's future. In the face of a threatened international withdrawal, the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) said the scheme must apply to all airlines, regardless of origin, or none. Following the introduction of the proposed legislative Bill in the US House of Representatives forbidding US airlines to participate, a hearing of the House Aviation Subcommittee took place on July 27. China and Russia are also understood to be discussing countermeasures of their own.

European airlines nervous as international demands for Europe to exclude foreign airlines from EU ETS continue to grow (relevance: 47.3%, date: Dec 14, 2011)
Fri 19 Aug 2011 - Trade associations representing Europe's leading network and regional carriers have called on the European Commission to urgently address the growing international pressure, particularly from the United States, for the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) to drop the inclusion of airlines from outside Europe. The Association of European Airlines (AEA) said that with just five months before the start there was now considerable uncertainty on the scheme's future. In the face of a threatened international withdrawal, the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) said the scheme must apply to all airlines, regardless of origin, or none. Following the introduction of the proposed legislative Bill in the US House of Representatives forbidding US airlines to participate, a hearing of the House Aviation Subcommittee took place on July 27. China and Russia are also understood to be discussing countermeasures of their own.

Mitigation of international aviation emissions: The flightpath from Paris to Montreal (relevance: 47.3%, date: Jan 12, 2016)
Tue 12 Jan 2016 - The COP21 climate summit last month produced a remarkable global consensus on the mitigation of anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions and adaptation to their residual impact. Specific text addressing international aviation and shipping emissions was cut from the Paris Agreement during the meeting - seemingly with cursory consultation at most - and proved too difficult to reintroduce in the pressures of the final hours. But the Agreement embodies several features, notably increased ambition, which will serve to guide continuing work on mitigation of aviation emissions through ICAO. Of particular relevance is the development by ICAO of a global market-based measure (MBM) for consideration by the 39th Session of its Assembly later this year and intended implementation from 2020. Chris Lyle reviews some implications of the Paris Agreement for ICAO's undertaking.

Is success in sight for a global agreement on an effective economic measure to address international aviation emissions? (relevance: 46.9%, date: Jun 30, 2016)
Thu 30 June 2016 - In the 18 years since being given a mandate under the Kyoto Protocol for reduction or limitation of greenhouse gas emissions from international civil aviation, ICAO has pursued a 'basket of measures' for mitigation, with significant effectiveness on the technical and operational side, but the UN agency has made limited progress on a vital global market-based measure (MBM). Following an intense period of activity, with the added stimulus of last December's UNFCCC Paris Agreement, ICAO's governing Council has now developed a framework for a Carbon Offset and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), to be submitted to the ICAO Assembly in September. Chris Lyle reviews the substance of the proposal, the issues yet to be resolved, the prospects for adoption by the Assembly and subsequent implementation, and the adequacy of the likely contribution to global GHG emissions mitigation, suggesting possible means of achieving greater ambition.

Aviation and climate change: what now for a global approach? (relevance: 46.4%, date: Jan 24, 2011)
Mon 24 Jan 2011 - The outcomes of the ICAO Assembly in Montreal last October and the UNFCCC's COP 16 in Cancun in December were greeted with cautious optimism. Agreements were reached in both forums, specific to international aviation in the case of ICAO and looking at the totality of GHG emissions by COP 16. Both ICAO's Assembly Resolution and the Cancun Agreements were, though, incomplete and fragmented. Nevertheless, the results provide building blocks for progress and, as far as international aviation is concerned, ICAO is now firmly in the pilot's seat. Chris Lyle provides a timely strategic overview of the status of efforts towards a global approach to regulating greenhouse gas emissions from aviation.

Climate czar concedes that aviation CO2 emissions could form a quarter of total UK output by 2050 (relevance: 45.8%, date: May 8, 2009)
Fri 8 May 2009 - The UK Government's policies on aviation and climate change came under scrutiny this week at an evidence session of the House of Commons Transport Committee. Lord Adair Turner, Chairman of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC), said that if aviation CO2 emissions remained flat they could make up a quarter of the UK's total under the Government's pledge to reduce overall CO2 emissions by 80 percent by 2050. At the same hearing, Lord Chris Smith, Chairman of the Environment Agency, said he did not believe passengers and airlines were paying enough to cover their environmental impact.

Air traffic control improvements are key to cutting aviation emissions in the short term, finds new Oxford study (relevance: 43.2%, date: Feb 10, 2010)
Wed 10 Feb 2010 - Biofuels could reduce pollution and better technology boost efficiency but neither will have the global impact that improved flight management could achieve, says a new report by the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment at the University of Oxford. Dr Chris Carey, the Smith School's aviation expert, says the most obvious target for improving efficiency in aviation is engines - the source of emissions - but major technological innovations are a massive financial risk and new, more efficient aircraft are slow to reach the market. However, in a best-case scenario, which foresees major advances in aircraft technology, a high take-up in jet biofuels and a fully integrated global air traffic management system, aviation emissions could be cut by up to 95 percent by 2050.

Aviation after Copenhagen: ICAO must now develop a bold strategic vision (relevance: 43%, date: Feb 5, 2010)
Fri 5 Feb 2010 - With the dust now settling on the UNFCCC COP 15 meeting in Copenhagen, Chris Lyle takes a strategic look at the implications for aviation. Whilst the aviation industry has tried to put a positive spin on the result, it did not achieve some of the key goals it set for a post-Kyoto framework, notably treatment of aviation as a sector. ICAO's aims for Copenhagen were less defined but there was a lack of progress towards reconciliation of the divergence between the UNFCCC principle of CBDR amongst countries and principles in aviation's Chicago Convention of non-discrimination amongst operators. To sustain credibility, ICAO must now be bold and wrest back leadership by developing workable economic instruments and specific targets within an unambiguous framework.

Will ICAO States at last deliver a meaningful global agreement on mitigating international aviation emissions? (relevance: 40.9%, date: Sep 2, 2013)
Mon 2 Sept 2013 - Later this month the triennial ICAO Assembly will address mitigation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from international air transport for the sixth time since the Kyoto Protocol was adopted, the fifth time since the publication of the IPCC Special Report on Aviation and the Global Atmosphere, and the third time since the Kyoto Protocol came into force. The not inconsiderable technological and operational improvements over the past 16 years since its adoption have proved nowhere near sufficient to reduce aviation emissions in absolute terms - or even to maintain them at current levels - but ICAO States have been unable to achieve consensus on the additional mitigation measures necessary. Can we finally expect a comprehensive global agreement to realise Kyoto's "through ICAO" mandate? Chris Lyle (right) outlines the context, the key issues, and the prospects for an end game.

Will ICAO States at last deliver a meaningful global agreement on mitigating international aviation emissions? (relevance: 40.9%, date: Sep 25, 2013)
Mon 2 Sept 2013 - Later this month the triennial ICAO Assembly will address mitigation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from international air transport for the sixth time since the Kyoto Protocol was adopted, the fifth time since the publication of the IPCC Special Report on Aviation and the Global Atmosphere, and the third time since the Kyoto Protocol came into force. The not inconsiderable technological and operational improvements over the past 16 years since its adoption have proved nowhere near sufficient to reduce aviation emissions in absolute terms - or even to maintain them at current levels - but ICAO States have been unable to achieve consensus on the additional mitigation measures necessary. Can we finally expect a comprehensive global agreement to realise Kyoto's "through ICAO" mandate? Chris Lyle (left) outlines the context, the key issues, and the prospects for an end game.

The control of aviation emissions reaches a critical juncture (relevance: 38.1%, date: Jul 24, 2009)
Fri 24 July 2009 - With less than six months to the crucial UNFCCC summit in Copenhagen and calls by world leaders for international aviation to be included in a post-Kyoto Agreement, there is a need to distill the number of proposals that have been put forward and gauge their potential to offer a satisfactory outcome to the challenge that has so far proved elusive. Chris Lyle provides a comparative analysis of evolving positions in ICAO, IATA and other groupings in the context of the December meeting, along with a review of the draft negotiating texts for Copenhagen related to international aviation, and outlines some next steps.

Targeting airspace efficiency: how air traffic management can play its part in reducing aviation emissions (relevance: 37.2%, date: Apr 9, 2009)
Thu 9 Apr 2009 - Emissions reductions are firmly on the agenda for the UNFCCC Copenhagen talks at the end of this year and aviation is expected to be included. The Civil Air Navigation Services Organisation (CANSO) is playing its part by targeting airspace efficiency and, therefore, reducing airline fuel burn. On average, air traffic management (ATM) is currently 92-94 percent efficient overall and the goal is to reach 96 percent by 2050. Chris Goater explains why this seemingly modest target is highly challenging and both technically and politically difficult.

ICAO Council meets to hammer out a compromise on implementing a global MBM to limit growth of aviation emissions (relevance: 36.3%, date: Sep 25, 2013)
Tue 3 Sept 2013 - As negotiations continue at ICAO on an agreement to implement a global market-based mechanism (MBM) to reduce the net growth of international aviation emissions, there are signs that progress is being made towards a compromise that has the backing of a number of important States, including the United States, those from the EU and possibly China. However, it is believed the wording of the resolution being prepared for the upcoming ICAO Assembly later this month stops short of agreement to adopt a global MBM but merely that a scheme be developed for a decision in 2016. The draft resolution, to be discussed at a special meeting of the ICAO Council tomorrow (Sept 4), is said to carry a US-led proposal that would allow the EU to re-include intercontinental flights into the EU ETS on an airspace limitation basis pending a global scheme. Trade body Airlines for America said it was opposed to such a move.

ICAO Council meets to hammer out a compromise on implementing a global MBM to limit growth of aviation emissions (relevance: 36.3%, date: Sep 3, 2013)
Tue 3 Sept 2013 - As negotiations continue at ICAO on an agreement to implement a global market-based mechanism (MBM) to reduce the net growth of international aviation emissions, there are signs that progress is being made towards a compromise that has the backing of a number of important States, including the United States, those from the EU and possibly China. However, it is believed the wording of the resolution being prepared for the upcoming ICAO Assembly later this month stops short of agreement to adopt a global MBM but merely that a scheme be developed for a decision in 2016. The draft resolution, to be discussed at a special meeting of the ICAO Council tomorrow (Sept 4), is said to carry a US-led proposal that would allow the EU to re-include intercontinental flights into the EU ETS on an airspace limitation basis pending a global scheme. Trade body Airlines for America said it was opposed to such a move.


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