Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

CleanTechnica

Aviation

Nobel Economists Urge Obama to Support EU Aviation Carbon Scheme

 
There are five Nobel-prize-winning economists among the 26 US economists calling on President Obama, in an open letter, to drop opposition and support the European Union’s legislation that will charge airlines for their carbon emissions.

“We implore you to support the European Union’s innovative efforts to place a price on carbon from aviation through the emissions trading system (EU ETS), or, at the very least, to stop actively opposing these efforts,” they wrote in the open letter (PDF).

“The aviation sector represents a large and growing global source of carbon emissions.  Addressing emissions in this sector by negotiating a global pricing system through the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) would send an important signal that carbon pricing is an effective way to correct a major market failure—the growing concentration of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere.”

The United States has been opposed to the EU’s move to include airlines in it emissions trading scheme for awhile now (despite the finding of some reports that its not likely to impact U.S. airlines’ bottom line at all), stating that the move is illegal under international treaties. The US also backed a lawsuit challenging the plan, but the suit was eventually thrown out of court by the European Court of Justice.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton wrote to the European Union towards the end of 2011 stating that the US would take “appropriate action” if Brussels did not halt or delay its plans.

The EU is aware of these complaints, and joins with all naysayers in the belief that global action must be taken through the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO). However, so far ICAO has done nothing despite a decade of negotiations. Subsequently, it is entirely unsurprising that the EU has had to move forward on its own.

The authors of the letter are economists from universities including Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, Princeton, and Berkeley.

“If climate change is to be slowed appreciably at tolerable cost, it is wise to use the market to provide incentives for individuals and firms to reduce greenhouse gas pollution,” they write. “In economic terms, the emission of these pollutants meets the classic definition of an externality — the price that individuals and firms face for emitting these pollutants is substantially lower than the social cost imposed by the pollution. Because emissions are not priced, the world is wastefully using up a scarce resource, the earth’s ability to safely absorb greenhouse gas emissions.”

“Rather than opposing the EU, we urge your administration to support their efforts to price carbon in the context of the ICAO.  In order for the world to achieve its climatic objectives at tolerable cost, a cooperative approach among nations is essential. While we recognize that there are numerous obstacles to setting a uniform, global price on all carbon emissions, pricing them in the aviation sector would be a good start.  In particular, we urge you to drop the US opposition and to support the EU’s efforts to deal with this global problem.”

Source: Guardian
Image Source: postopp1

 
Don't want to miss a cleantech story? Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!
 

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.
Advertisement
 
 

Written By

I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, and I believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (.co.uk), and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at about.me for more.

Comments

You May Also Like

Clean Power

Rail in the US is a case where a huge transportation segment is deeply out of step with the rest of the world, and...

Clean Power

The natural experiment of renewables vs nuclear continues in China, and it continues to unfold in renewables' favor. 

Clean Power

The term "just transition" emerged from the 1970s North American labor movement to become a campaign for a planned energy transition. It includes justice...

Clean Power

What might the path to 100% clean energy look like following the Inflation Reduction Act?

Copyright © 2023 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.