House Protects Airlines and Passengers from EU Tax

Airlines for America (A4A) commended the U.S. House of Representatives for acting to protect U.S. airlines and their customers from participating in the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS). The EU ETS would tax the emissions of airlines that arrive to, from or within the EU covering the duration of the flight, including portions flown over international waters and originating countries such as the United States.

The House approved an amendment to the FY13 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations bill that would prevent the Department of Transportation and the Federal Aviation Administration from using funds to impose the EU ETS on U.S. airlines.

A4A noted that the action follows the House approval of bipartisan legislation (H.R. 2594) last fall that would require the Secretary of Transportation to prohibit U.S. airlines from participating in the EU ETS. A similar bipartisan bill also has been introduced in the Senate by Sen. John Thune (R-SD) and Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-MO).
“We commend… the House leadership for taking further action to protect U.S. airlines and our customers from this unlawful tax that is an egregious regulatory overreach, a violation of U.S. sovereignty and a clear cash grab to offset European debt,” said A4A President and CEO Nicholas E. Calio.

“We appreciate the House recognizing that this unilateral approach is wrong and will do nothing to improve the environment; we urge the Senate to take similar action, and we also encourage the Administration to file a legal challenge, forcing the EU to work toward a global sectoral approach through the International Civil Aviation Organization,” Calio said. 

Calio said U.S. airlines are committed to building on their impressive environmental records.