One of the agenda items at an ICAO Council meeting in Montreal this month will be the so-called standards and recommended practices for CORSIA – some of the building blocks of this world-first global sectoral climate change scheme.
From 1 January next year, all operators of international flights will need to start monitoring fuel and CO2 emissions and reporting these to governments. The standards under discussion this month set the framework for this monitoring requirement.
Michael Gill, executive director of the Air Transport Action Group (ATAG), says: “It is imperative that governments agree to these standards now, to give us in industry enough time to prepare for the 1 January start date for CORSIA compliance.
"We have been hard at work for the past 18 months educating airlines and business operators about their obligations. We now need the standards to be adopted to provide certainty for operators as they prepare for implementation.”
ATAG, IATA and International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) have been conducting global outreach sessions for operators as the deadline draws nearer.
Fourteen sessions have been undertaken so far, with at least nine further workshops scheduled in the next few months to help operators prepare emissions monitoring plans, a crucial first step in the process of implementation.
Additional discussions at ICAO will take place at future Council sessions on two of the other crucial components of CORSIA: details of the emissions units that can be used to comply with the offsetting requirements from 2021; and deliberations over additional sustainability criteria for sustainable aviation fuels.
Gill comments: “These two remaining elements are just as important to the success of the scheme and operators need certainty on them as soon as possible.
"We need to see further progress made this year on the offset units that can be eligible for use under CORSIA – this is to ensure that offset providers have enough time to develop suitable projects and to guarantee there is a sufficient volume of eligible units available for airlines to purchase.
"The rapid establishment of the technical advisory body to recommend eligible units is necessary.
“Sustainable aviation fuels are a core component of our industry’s future. The aviation industry feels it is imperative for any use of new energy sources to adhere to a strong set of sustainability criteria.
"Industry was part of the process to develop the draft criteria as part of ICAO technical discussions and urge the Council to complement the criteria already agreed with the remaining broader set of sustainability principles.”