China issues new EU-ETS aviation emissions warning

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China: A spokesperson for China’s Foreign Ministry has said the country welcome the EU’s suspension of international flights from inclusion in its carbon trading platform.

“China welcomes the EU’s decision to suspend the enforcement of the ETS [Emissions Trading System], but does not accept the practice of applying the system to foreign flights within Europe. China expects the EU to take a constructive attitude and work with other parties to settle differences properly,” said Hong Lei.

Talks on a new global system continue through the UN’s aviation body, International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

A two day ICAO conference on climate change next month will address how to cut emissions from the sector. The body’s General Assembly in September, which is held every three years, is the last chance to put a global deal in place before the EU deadline passes it starts including international flights in the ETS. (Xinhua)

China, Russia, the USA and India led opposition to the EU’s aviation plans (Source: Creative Commons/Julian Herzog)

USA: President Obama has praised his administration’s progress on climate change so far in the face of stiff Republican opposition. Speaking at a fund raiser last night, hosted by billionaire and Keystone XL opponent Tom Steyer, Obama said: “Despite a very aggressive agenda on the other side to block action, we’ve been able to double fuel-efficiency standards on cars, we’ve been able to take mercury out of our air, we have been able to reduce carbon emissions in this country.” (Reuters)

India: An Indian government funded study has rubbished claims from Brazilian researchers that hydropower dams are responsible for 19% of all greenhouse gas emissions in India. The counter study by the National Institute of Oceanography found methane emissions to be negligible. (Times of India)

USA: Last summer’s drought hit US corn harvests so severely some ethanol producers decided they were better off closing. According to Grist, 1 in 10 ethanol producers have shut down as a result of the drought. Yesterday, researchers claimed US biofuels policy would increase greenhouse gas emissions as a result of forests being cleared to meet the demand for energy crops. (Grist)

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