In September 2009, LOT Polish Airlines joined the airline companies associated with the Aviation Global Deal Group, the first of the Star Alliance carriers to do so.
The AGD Group, founded in February 2009, brings together such leading airlines as Air France/KLM, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Blue Airlines Group and Qatar Airways, as well as companies connected with the aviation sector and an international non-governmental organisation, The Climate Group.
The primary aim of the Aviation Global Deal Group is to develop a global agreement consisting of a unified system for the trading of CO2 emissions in the aviation sector. The trading system provides for emission allowances to be allocated to airlines. Should it prove necessary, they may then be increased by purchasing further allowances via an auction. As a result, every airline will have a limit to the amount of CO2 they can emit into the atmosphere and every time that limit is exceeded, it will mean that further emission allowances must, of necessity, be purchased. This solution will induce the airlines to invest in pro-environmental technologies, since spending money on modernising their fleets is, after all, a far more legitimate expenditure than the purchase of additional emission allowances.
It seems obvious that aviation should be treated as one sector, given the impossibility of assigning CO2 emissions in the airlines industry to a specific region or state. Should the emissions trading system not be unified, this may well then lead to the destabilisation of conditions for free competition between operators, as well as to the increased bureaucracy that would follow from the self-imposition of the same structures. As a consequence, a swelling administration and the heightened costs connected with it would ensue.
The proposal put forward by the AGD Group supports the actions conducted by the International Air Transport Association (IATA), which is also endeavouring to find a global solution for the system of trading emission allowances. Their collaborative work is further supported by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), a specialised agency of the United Nations, tasked with the implementation of appropriate solutions in respect of aviation emissions.
We, at LOT, hope that, thanks to the collective activity of numerous aviation organisations, it will prove possible to create a functional, transparent and, first and foremost, common system for the trading of CO2 emissions.