Senate Bill To Shield US Airlines From EU Law

December 8, 2011

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A Republican senator introduced legislation on Wednesday to shield US airlines from a law set to take effect in Europe that would charge carriers globally for aircraft emissions.

John Thune proposed the bill, but lacks a Democratic co-sponsor that airlines were hoping would give the proposal more weight in the Democrat-controlled Senate.

The House of Representatives approved a similar bill in October with bi-partisan support.

The Obama administration opposes the European law, due to take effect in January.

The law would require airlines to join the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme and buy permits to offset greenhouse emissions from jets operating to, from and within Europe.

Airlines globally say compliance would hurt them financially. The change is estimated to cost US airlines USD$3.1 billion between 2012 and year-end 2020, an industry trade group said.

China, India and two dozen other nations also object and a United Nations' body that oversees civil aviation is accelerating its efforts to try to craft a compromise.