Airports Council International (ACI) Europe has welcomed the International Civil Aviation Organization’s (ICAO’s) Long Term Aspirational Goal for global aviation to reach net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. The announcement follows a two-week long political negotiations aligning international aviation’s climate objective with the goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement – as well with the net zero pledge made by the aviation industry last year.
Olivier Jankovec, ACI Europe Director General commented: “ICAO’s global commitment to aviation’s net zero future is a key milestone for the industry for the climate. The industry’s ambition is now finally being met at the political level globally. We now need ICAO to urgently work on concrete implementation policies and actions – guiding States across the World towards delivery and supporting the industry in the transition.”
More than 270 airports in ACI Europe’s network have already individually committed to the net zero 2050 pledge, representing 75.5% of European air passenger traffic (as per 2019 traffic levels) with nearly 50% of airports who now have even more ambitious net zero targets in their sights. In addition airports have been delivering tangible CO2 reductions for more than a decade through the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme, which launched in 2009. While the initiative has expanded beyond Europe and is now adopted by airports around the world, it also demonstrates how decarbonisation happens at varying speeds across world regions. As such climate policy framework needs to take into account regional differences in progression.
At the Euorpe level, the EU institutions are working to accelerate the implementation of the European Green Deal, including proposals on how to reach -55% CO2 emissions by 2030 through the Fit for 55 regulatory package. The European aviation eco-system supports this ambition and is working with the institutions on necessary adjustments to the files.