Tatsat Chronicle Magazine

ACI Urges States To Reach Agreement On De-Carbonization Goal Ahead Of ICAO Meeting

The meeting will focus on achieving net-zero for helping to stay within the 1.5°C goal of the Paris Agreement.
July 15, 2022

The Airports Council International (ACI) World, ACI Africa, ACI Asia-Pacific, ACI EUROPE, ACI Latin America-Caribbean and ACI North America have jointly urged member states’ representatives at the upcoming meeting of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), to reach an agreement on a Long-term Aspirational Goal (LTAG) for CO2 emissions reductions, aligned with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C goal and the industry objective of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The aviation industry, ministers, and high-level officials from across the world will gather at ICAO’s headquarters in Montreal, Canada between July 19-22 for the meeting on the feasibility of a LTAG for international aviation CO2 emissions reductions.

The representatives of various countries will examine the outcomes from the ICAO Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection and seek to make policy commitments in preparation for the 41st Session of the ICAO Assembly—a triennial event that establishes the worldwide policy of the Organization for the next three years.

ACI and other international organisations have called on countries to reach a meaningful agreement to establish a clear regulatory framework in which the aviation industry can thrive while continuing to deliver socio-economic benefits to the world.

Aviation plays a fundamental role in connecting communities as well as establishing and maintaining business connections, carrying 45% of global trade, and supporting 58% of world tourism. The aviation sector’s objective is to continue to provide this vital connectivity, while also reducing its global climate impact and achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, ACI said.

ACI and its member airports have already committed, at the global level, to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with support from governments. More than 130 ACI member airports have brought forward their target to 2030 or even earlier.

Some are planning for net-zero by 2040, while others will need more support to develop and implement their de-carbonization roadmaps. ACI is working with governments and other sectors to support all its members in reaching these ambitious but achievable objectives.

ACI and its member airports are also part of the Air Transport Action Group’s (ATAG) net-zero carbon goal for aviation emissions, under which the global aviation industry (airlines, airports, air traffic management and aircraft/engine manufacturers) has aligned with the Paris Agreement 1.5°C goal.

Airports’ long-standing sustainability leadership has been exhibited through clear strategies and de-carbonization roadmaps they have developed, as well as significant achievements in the implementation of environmental and social initiatives for many years.

Airport Carbon Accreditation—the global airport carbon management certification standard—has grown over the past 15 years to include 403 airports certified at all levels of the program in 79 countries across the world. Of these, 87 airports are either carbon neutral or pursuing the highest levels of the program. In addition, 10 airports have already achieved net zero.

ACI, representing the world’s airports, recognises the need for assistance in the industry transition and urges governments to tackle climate change by balancing the need for many States to grow their economies and continuing to ensure the benefits of sustainable development for society. Collaboration is the catalyst, by providing benefits to all stakeholders. An agreement at the global level at ICAO is essential to provide consistency among policies and to avoid unintended consequences, ACI said.

Girja Shankar Kaura

The writer is a Delhi-based freelance journalist, who has reported and written on a wide range of subjects in an extensive career.