Germany’s Christian Democrats party has proposed doubling taxes on domestic flights in an effort to help reduce CO2 emissions.
A BBC news report says connecting flights that are part of long-haul trips would be exempt from the measure, which would impact the current tax of $8.10 per ticket for domestic flights.
MORE Airlines & Airports
Frontier to Eliminate Some Change Fees
Atlanta is the World’s Busiest Airport Once Again
United Airlines and Expedia Announce New Multi-Year…
The suggestion, which was proposed by leaders of the Christian Democrats party, who are part of a coalition that includes the Christian Social Union (CSU) and Social Democrats (SPD).
The proposal also notes that engines not reliant on fossil fuels would exempt from the tax.
“We will invest, together with the aviation industry, to make electric-powered flight standard for short-haul flights and to create synthetic fuel to achieve climate-neutrality on medium- and long-haul flights,” states the proposal, according to the BBC.
The move comes amid growing criticism of the aviation industry’s global contribution to CO2 emissions.
Earlier this year, Responsible Travel issued a manifesto on aviation and climate change calling the aviation industry one of the fastest-growing contributors to greenhouse gas emissions.
The manifesto from the travel company also challenged governments around the world to take actions to reduce demand for flying through taxation and other measures.
“As the world focuses in on reducing carbon emissions aviation is getting a free ride,” Justin Francis, CEO Responsible Travel, told TravelPulse in May. “This has to stop if we are to keep global warming below 1.5 percent.”
According to the manifesto, if aviation was a country, it would be the 7th largest emitter of CO2 in the world, just behind Germany. In Europe, Ryanair has become one of the top 10 most carbon polluting businesses.
A 2018 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recommended that to limit global temperature rises to no more than 1.5°C, global greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 must be 55 percent below 2017 levels.
With the anticipated rise in global air passengers, even the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) predicts that aviation emissions are expected to grow by up to 300 percent by 2050.
“If we are to achieve the necessary global cuts in emissions, the aviation industry cannot rely on other sectors to take on the burden of reductions. Aviation needs to play its part and tackle its own emissions,” states the Responsible Travel’s manifesto.
Responsible Travel has said it does not believe that carbon offsets, which have become increasingly popular among some travelers thanks to climate change leaders like Greta Thunberg, are an effective means of dealing with the pollution from the aviation industry. Bringing about significant industry change will mean that individuals need to alter their travel habits, and ultimately fly less, according to Responsible Travel.
Germany’s governing coalition is expected to unveil a sweeping climate package later this month, one that may include expanded grants for electric car buyers, encouraged train use and increased taxes for those operating polluting vehicles, said the BBC.