United, American Airlines, and their trade association, Airlines for America, gave up on a lost cause, a late and ill-conceived legal challenge to the European Union’s landmark law limiting global warming pollution from aviation.
The European Commissioner’s top transport official appeared to back away from plans to allow megatrucks to travel freely across European national borders at a stormy meeting yesterday afternoon of the European Parliament’s Transport Committee. Transport & Environment says the EU should scrap plans to boost longer and heavier lorries, and instead propose changes that would allow future lorries to be more aerodynamic and safer but without changing the length or weight of the load space.
A key meeting on the future of the EU’s plan to cut carbon emissions from transport fuel production reached no agreement today. A decision on carbon emissions values for highly polluting sources of fuel such as tar sands and coal-to-liquid will now be taken by Environment Ministers in the Summer.
Eight Nobel Peace Prize laureates have written to European Heads of State and Ministers of the Environment urging them to tackle the most climate polluting sources of transport fuel, notably tar sands.
Europe’s climate commissioner Connie Hedegaard is meeting EU environment ministers today to discuss Europe’s plan to force oil companies to clean up transport fuels. The meeting comes amid a long-running lobbying campaign by Canada and the oil industry who are resisting attempts to force dirty sources of oil such as tar sands and coal-to-liquid to be produced in a more sustainable way. Meanwhile, California, America’s largest transport fuel market, gave renewed backing on Friday to its own ‘Low Carbon Fuel Standard’: the world’s first.
There appears to be a link between US aviation industry lobbyists and recent international political pressure against EU plans to cap aviation emissions according to documents revealed today by Transport & Environment.
A transatlantic coalition of environmental groups applauded today’s European Court of Justice’s Advocate General’s preliminary opinion, which supports Europe’s right to tackle carbon emissions from airlines that use its airports. The coalition said the preliminary opinion was very encouraging. The Court is expected to hand down its final opinion in early 2012.