Lufthansa, Air France Join Forces Against EU’s Climate Plans for Aviation

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Airplanes of German carrier Lufthansa are parked at the Berlin Schoenefeld airport, amid the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in Schoenefeld, Germany, on May 26, 2020. (Fabrizio Bensch/Reuters)

BERLIN—An alliance of airlines and airports called for changes to the European Union’s planned climate change legislation on Monday, arguing it will make them less competitive with non-European rivals.

Taking aim at aviation, a sector deemed responsible for up to 3 percent of global emissions, the European Union presented plans last July that foresee stricter rules on CO2 emissions and the use of synthetic fuel blends, as well as the implementation of a kerosene tax.

The alliance, whose nearly 20 members include all Lufthansa subsidiaries, Air France-KLM, and major airports such as Frankfurt and Amsterdam’s Schipol, argues long-haul flights via non-European hubs would not be subjected to the same associated costs, leading to a potential shift in business to such carriers.

The alliance rejects a kerosene tax outright and proposes that the environmental protection surcharge be based on the entire flight route, not just feeder flights bringing passengers from the EU to international hubs such as Istanbul or Dubai.

In principle, the alliance is however in favor of the EU’s “Fit for 55” climate package, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55 percent by 2030 compared with 1990 levels.

Reuters

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