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ICAO: Fighting for relevance

Will ICAO be able to rise to the challenge of approving a global measure to cut GHG emissions from aircraft? Will such a global measure be convincing enough for the US, China and the other 26 countries who are fiercely opposing the EU ETS? And will the EU manage to keep a firm stand on its emission trading scheme? T&E programme manager on aviation, Bill Hemmings, answers some of these questions in this post.

Industry lobbying continues to hold Commission back

The current Commission is on track to have one of the worst-ever environmental records of any EU administration. That is the view of the group of 10 Brussels-based environmental NGOs (‘Green 10’), whose mid-term assessment of José Manuel Barroso’s second Commission says it would not win any medals and is acting to protect the environment even less than his first Commission (2005-09).

The real story behind the latest EEA emissions figures (part 2)

This blog is part 2 of an analysis of 20 years of CO2 emission trends in transport (1990-2010) as recently published by the European Environment Agency. The first blog focused on overall trends, and on aviation and shipping. In this post Jos Dings, T&E director, looks into individual countries’ performance, in particular when set next to their economic performance, and challenges the common belief that, after all, transport emissions are an almost inevitable by-product of economic growth.

Ministers’ call for road funding defies CEF agreement

EU transport ministers have contradicted the Commission’s transport infrastructure funding proposals by calling for some of the money to be diverted to road projects. The Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), which replaces the fund for the trans-European transport networks (TEN-T), was put forward last year, with one of its main aims to help the EU achieve its target of reducing greenhouse gases by 60% between 1990 and 2050. For that reason, the Commission had proposed to concentrate funding on rail, intermodal and port projects.

Q: When is a rail project not a rail project? A: When it's meant to get people into planes.

The EU should not be funding airport projects, or dressing up airport express train links as green "intermodal hubs" says T&E's deputy director Nina Renshaw.

Commissioner’s legal u-turn opens the door to megatrucks

Lorry road trains as long as medium-sized aircraft could be permitted to travel throughout Europe, following an unprecedented reinterpretation of existing law by European Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas.  Sustainable transport campaigners Transport & Environment say the change is undemocratic and undermines the Commissioner’s own key objectives for the transport sector of reducing emissions and boosting rail freight.  

The real story behind the latest EEA emissions figures (part 1)

A closer look at Europe's latest annual emissions figures reveals some reasons for concern.  In the first of a two-part blog, T&E's Director Jos Dings explains the reality behind the EEA's numbers.

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