Air Ticket Tax Will Benefit Environment
The air ticket tax under discussion at an international aid conference in Paris this week, will have environmental benefits according to T&E, Europe’s principal sustainable transport organisation. From July, a French ‘air solidarity tax’ will add an estimated 1% to ticket prices, resulting in a reduction of demand for air travel of 1% with a corresponding reduction of 1% in harmful emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants.
[mailchimp_signup][/mailchimp_signup]But with the growth rate of the industry as a whole at 5% per year, the positive environmental benefits will be relatively small, especially if limited to a handful of countries. T&E is calling on the EU to introduce a package of measures for the aviation sector including fuel or emissions charges and inclusion in the EU’s Emissions Trading System (EU-ETS).
T&E Director Jos Dings said, “No one should lose any sleep worrying that the richest elements of society are going to be paying a few extra Euros to combat Aids in Africa. This tax will benefit those who need it most and will also make a contribution to the battle against climate change, which will benefit us all.”
The French tax is much higher for business travelers so the impact on poorer passengers will be minimal. Furthermore, a recent UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) study found that the poorest quarter of society take just 10% of flights while the richest quarter take more than 50%.
Contrary to aviation industry claims, T&E also emphasises that the negative impact of the ticket tax on tourism and other business in Africa as a result of reduced travel is negligible as flights to Africa from EU airports represent just 0.7% of the total.
T&E’s position paper on the air ticket tax (3 pages) can be downloaded here.