British aviation industry promises to do better at curbing emissions

Stung by new revelations that it is failing to meet its targeted reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions, the European Union is looking around for new scapego… er, strategies. Of late, its bureaucratic gaze has fallen upon the aviation industry, with visions of fuel taxes dancing in its collective head. That’s got the industry sweating, so a coalition of Brit-based airlines and aerospace companies — the Sustainable Aviation group — has issued a report promising a number of reforms. It says by 2020 jets will be introduced that produce 50 percent less carbon dioxide than 2000 models. The group also expressed support for an emissions-credit trading scheme, among other measures. Still, Jeff Gazzard of GreenSkies Alliance, an environmental coalition, said that the measures, even if successful, would at best “make things a little less horrible than would otherwise be the case.” Because it’s anticipated that air travel will increase dramatically in the next 25 years, aviation emissions are projected to double by 2030 even if new, more efficient planes are added to the mix.