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Debate on climate protection: Easyjet wants to offset CO2 emissions of its aircraft


The public pressure is great: the European airlines are looking for ways for more climate protection. They refuse to increase the air traffic tax. Now Easyjet has presented its own plans.

The low-cost airline Easyjet intends to fully offset the CO2 emissions of its aircraft fleet with climate protection projects. It is from now on the world's first major airline with net zero emissions, said the head of the airline Johan Lundgren at the presentation of the results for the year 2018/2019. In the current financial year one will spend around 25 million pounds (29.3 million euros) for the compensation.

One is aware that the compensation is only a transitional measure, Lundgren said. The company will continue to support the development of innovative technologies. With Airbus, they have reached an agreement in principle on a project to enable electric and hybrid short-haul aircraft.

At the same time Lundgren turned against air traffic taxes, as Germany has just decided to better environmental protection. They did not make the aviation sector cleaner, but prevented investment in clean aircraft.

Lufthansa CEO calls for investments in green fuels

Significant criticism of the increase in the air traffic tax came from Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr. At the annual conference of the Luftfahrtvereinigung IATA in Berlin, he said that the additional levy was mainly for local airlines, as it only stems from their hubs like Frankfurt - but not at international transit airports such as Singapore.

In addition, it should not be that the additional revenue of an estimated two billion euros per year in the general government budget, said Spohr. Instead, the environment should be something "returned": "Let's take the money and buy sustainable aircraft fuel Germany could become a model for other countries." Also, synthetic fuel processing plants could be funded with the additional funding, Spohr said.

In fact, the revenue from the tax should, inter alia, subsidize regional airports. This is according to SPIEGEL information from a decision of the Committee on Budgets. According to this, 20 million euros will be flowing to these airports in the coming year, and in the medium term it should be 50 million euros. First, the "editorial network Germany" reported about it.

Meanwhile, it became known that the World Aviation Association IATA general criticizes the German policy. Poor conditions limited competitiveness and hampered industry growth.

"In terms of infrastructure, Germany lags behind with capacity bottlenecks at runways and terminals," it said in a paper by the association, which was pre-existing by the "Frankfurter Allgemeine". For example, Frankfurt Airport is already operating to capacity at peak times.

From the perspective of IATA, the taxes and fees for air traffic in Germany are already too high. On average, they ranked behind the UK at the second highest value per passenger in Europe. Worldwide, Germany belongs to the top third of the most expensive countries (111 out of 148). The increase in the air traffic tax in 2020 is not included here.

Source: spiegel

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