Written answers

Thursday, 24 October 2019

Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport

Aviation Industry Regulations

Photo of Catherine MartinCatherine Martin (Dublin Rathdown, Green Party)
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226. To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the consideration national policy has given to the differential impacts of aviation emissions on the climate depending on the time of day and year when they are omitted; and the actions taken or under consideration by his Department or agencies under his aegis to reduce the climate impacts of aviation emissions by taking the time of day and year and weather conditions into account in the timing and routing of flights. [43930/19]

Photo of Shane RossShane Ross (Dublin Rathdown, Independent)
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Ireland’s policy to reduce the climate impact of aviation emissions is aligned with the strategies being pursued at EU level and globally by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.  These strategies do not address the differential impacts of emissions depending on the time of day and year – further scientific work on the climate impact of non-CO2 emissions is needed in this regard and this is being advanced via ICAO’s Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection.

Ireland is however taking action based on the ICAO ‘basket of measures’ approach to address aviation emissions generally as follows -

On aircraft technology, Irish airlines have invested heavily in more fuel efficient aircraft over recent years. Irish airlines also operate with relatively high passenger load factors meaning emissions, on a per passenger basis, compare favourably with other airlines in Europe.

Operational initiatives to improve air traffic flows can also reduce fuel burn and emissions. The Irish Aviation Authority (IAA) and airlines actively engage in such initiatives e.g. the ENSURE and Dublin Point Merge projects. The future space-based navigation and positioning system , in which IAA is a partner, will feed into optimised flight operations across the globe also reducing emissions.

On market based measures, Irish airlines have participated in the EU-ETS scheme since 2012. The inclusion of intra-European flights in the EU ETS has delivered around 100 million tonnes of CO2 reductions/offsets between 2012 and 2018. Since 1 January 2019, Irish airlines are monitoring emissions via modified EU-ETS templates to prepare participation in ICAO’s Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme in International Aviation from the pilot phase in 2021. CORSIA aims at carbon neutral growth in aviation from 2020.

Finally, Ireland supports efforts towards the production and use of sustainable aviation fuels that produce less or no carbon. Work in this area needs to be prioritised, particularly at an EU level, to incentivise research, production and use of those fuels.


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