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Published on Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Russia threatens to cap EU flights



Part of retaliatory measures against EUETS agreed by 20 countries


Russia has threatened to cap European Union airline flights over Siberia as part of possible retaliatory measures approved by more than 20 countries.


Valery Okulov, Russia"s deputy transport minister, said each country could choose whatever measure it wanted, in line with its own laws, to try to stop the EU including airlines in its emissions trading system from the start of 2012.


He said Russia would look at limiting EU airlines" use of routes over Siberia, and give preference instead to carriers from Japan, China and other Asian nations.


"We are calling on the European Union to do whatever it takes to prevent a trade war," he said. "We intend to get EU"s carbon trading measures either cancelled or postponed."


Moscow is also considering a law banning Russian airlines from taking part in the EU scheme. Beijing has already told Chinese airlines to ignore the EU"s measure and a similar step is before the US Congress. Russia has threatened to cap European Union airline flights over Siberia as part of possible retaliatory measures approved by more than 20 countries .


The retaliatory steps include imposing new taxes on EU airlines, and suspending talks about giving European carriers more flying rights outside the bloc.


But the alliance of opponents, which includes the US, China and Japan, backed away from some of the more extreme steps they had been discussing ahead of a two-day meeting in Moscow that ended on Wednesday, such as reopening existing EU trade deals to pressure European industries.


The Moscow meeting also revealed the make-up of the countries fighting Brussels has changed since their efforts kicked off in India in September.


The US, China, Brazil, India, Japan and Russia have stayed steady opponents since then. But several others involved in earlier protests did not sign the Moscow declaration, including Canada, Egypt and Qatar.


And the number of Moscow signatories would have been smaller but for the presence of newer opponents, such as the former Soviet states of Armenia and Belarus.


And although officials from 23 countries signed a declaration listing eight measures they might adopt, they said they would only "consider" such actions.


The alliance of opponents aims to stop the bloc"s imposition of charges on carriers for their carbon pollution.


The retaliatory steps include imposing new taxes on EU airlines, and suspending talks about giving European carriers more flying rights outside the bloc.


But the alliance of opponents, which includes the US, China and Japan, backed away from some of the more extreme steps they had been discussing ahead of a two-day meeting in Moscow that ended last Wednesday, such as reopening existing EU trade deals to pressure European industries.


And although officials from 23 countries signed a declaration listing eight measures they might adopt, they said they would only "consider" such actions.


Connie Hedegaard, the EU climate commissioner, has repeatedly insisted Brussels will not back down to opponents of its boldest move yet to force the rest of the world to comply with its ambitious climate rules.


Writing on Twitter on Wednesday, she said: "Wonder if the next meeting hosted by Saudi Arabia will give a climate-friendly answer to the key question: what's your concrete alternative?


Environmental campaigners said the Moscow meeting"s failure to agree on co-ordinated measures suggested the opponents" efforts were fizzling out.


The outcome of the meeting showed "cooler heads may have prevailed and, if so, they are to be commended", said Annie Petsonk of the US Environmental Defense Fund.


The officials gathered in Moscow agreed to meet again in Saudi Arabia in the summer.


See also Europe"s Sensible Plan tweeted by Connie Hedegaard http://www.nytimes.com/2012/02/27/opinion/airlines-emissions-and-europes-sensible-plan.html?_r=2


Valere Tjolle
Tourism and carbon market report just out - special offer HERE
 

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  • cursed alright

    John, Think your yanking on the wrong chain. Stop playing with yourself. Where have you been for the last 6 months. So many of the idiots claiming global warming, when in fact it's actually global cooling, have been discredited, esp dodgy Ippc, who are dodgier than the Greek finacne minstry & that's saying something. Wake up. You've been conned by vested interests. Climate is simply the weather. Weathermen cannot predict todays weather very accurately, so they have no hope with tomorrow, let alone next week, next month next year or next decade. Europe is broke now. Guess you could all become communist states & give everyone a job, but you need to get your economies in order & introducing another tax, isn't going to do it.

    By Michael Anderson, Friday, March 2, 2012

  • Get A Life

    I agree about the carbon tax. All it does (hopefully) is create awareness. Conversely, global warming is scientifically quantifiable fact, and anybody who denies this just isn't playing with a full deck. I was onto it in the 50's, in elementary school when we couldn't go out and play on smoggy days. That was a schoolkid observation, but the science is undenieable. Last year I gave a Rockefeeller Foundation talk on Global Warming and its influence on Thailand tourism. Sadly, all my predictions came true - Bangkok floods, Krabi landslides, varying weather patterns. Unfortunately, I'm cursed with the gift of vision - Global warming (1950's), overpopulation (1960), Aids (1980), Asian Tsunami (2004) - and by the way, I live an amazing and exciting life filled with adventure. Before you tell me to get a life, tell it to Jeffrey Sachs, founder of the Earth Institute at Columbia University. Jeffrey is one of the most amazing minds in history. Global warming is quantifiable, and if we don't address the issue in fact "We are all doomed." Get A Life? I live an amazing life of adventure - wouldn't trade it for all the mmmoney in the World. BTW, red meat - poison to the human body - is also a huge contributor to Global warming. Go vegan!

    By John Gray, Thursday, March 1, 2012

  • CARBON TAX is a huge joke

    just another tax, it does absolutely nothing for the environment. Its proponents have all been shown up to be very dodgy. Are you Europeans that stupid ? Your economies are alrady in the toilet. All heading down Greece's path.

    By Michael Anderson, Thursday, March 1, 2012

  • John Gray get a life

    the world is not going to end, global temperatures are not increasing. Stop listening to all the garbage put out by people with a vested interest.

    By Michael Anderson, Thursday, March 1, 2012

  • We are all doomed

    If we can't get it together on greenhouse gas emmissions - and the EU seems to have taken a first step - homo sapiens will go down in the Universal Annals as the species intelligent enough to create global warming and overpopulation yet so stupid we are incapable of resolving solutions to the environmental problems we create.

    By John Gray, Wednesday, February 29, 2012

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