Saturday 27 May 2017

China bars its airlines from signing for EU carbon regime

Chris Buckley

China yesterday barred its airlines from a European scheme to reduce carbon emissions, hardening its stance a week before a summit at which the European Union will seek Chinese help to ease its debt crisis.

The wrangle over the scheme, which could charge for carbon emissions on flights in and out of Europe, has also drawn ire from the US and India.

All three argue the EU is exceeding its legal jurisdiction by calculating the carbon cost over the whole flight, not just Europe.

Next week, Chinese and EU leaders will hold a summit in Beijing, with the EU looking to China to dip into its huge foreign exchange reserves to help it tackle a debt build-up that threatens economic stability on the continent.

China's central government state council, or cabinet, said on its website that all airlines were banned from taking part in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) -- unless they received government approval.

Beijing, which had already denounced the EU's law as a trade barrier, also prohibited all carriers from using it as a reason to raise fares or fees.

The EU's executive body said Chinese carriers had already begun signing up and it was confident the scheme, which is the mainstay of the EU's efforts to tackle climate change, would survive. (Reuters)

Irish Independent

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