‘Robust provisions’ or ‘junk credits’: Aviation offsetting agreement divides opinion

Airlines will only be able to purchase emissions units for the global aviation climate scheme CORSIA from a limited number of programmes, and then only credits relating to offsetting projects that begin in 2016 or later, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) has agreed.

“Today’s decision is the result of a robust assessment of emissions units programmes against a set of criteria agreed by ICAO member states,” said Salvatore Sciacchitano, president of the UN body’s council after a vote on Friday. “It will ensure that CORSIA is both practical and robust, and represents an important environmental milestone.”

The CORSIA scheme is intended to cap net aviation emissions at 2019-2020 levels, with any subsequent increases covered by the purchase of credits related to schemes such as tree planting or clean energy developments.

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