Emissions trading in aviation
The Emissions Directive was amended in 2008 to include aviation in the Community’s Emissions Trading System (Directive 2008/101/EU). The emission trading scheme applies to EU internal flights, as well as to aircraft entering and leaving EU airspace. Emission trading in aviation is intended to promote a reduction in the greenhouse gases caused by aviation cost-effectively and economically. As with general emissions trading, emission trading in aviation is based on emissions allowances within the emissions exchange system. 85 per cent of the aviation emission allowances are given to aircraft operators free of charge, on the basis of an EU-wide comparison. A deciding factor in the distribution of free emission allowances are the aircraft’s tonne-kilometres. The remaining 15 per cent of the aviation emission allowances are auctioned. The amendment to Emission Trading Directive has been implemented nationally by an Act on Aviation Emission Trading (34/2008).
The aviation emission trading is a semi-open system. This means that airlines may use emission allowances that have been purchased from sectors other than aviation in order to meet their obligations, but other sectors are not allowed to use emission allowances from aviation in order to meet their own obligations.
The first emissions trading period for air traffic began on 1 January 2011, running through to 31 December 2012. The next emission trading period will be consistent with that of facilities and plants, beginning on 1 January 2013 and extending to 31 December 2020.
Statutory tasks in Finland are undertaken by Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi) and the Energy Market Agency, which mostly takes charge of issues related to the Emissions Trading Register. The Finnish Transport Safety Agency is responsible for the distribution, monitoring and reporting of allocable emission rights. In turn, the Energy Market Authority is responsible for the recording and administration of emission trading rights, as well as entering the proceeds from auctions as income for the government.