The Association of Asia Pacific Airlines (AAPA) has welcomed the decision reached by 191 nations in a historic United Nations accord on October 6 to put in place the world's first carbon offsetting scheme for the aviation industry.
"The aviation sector has committed to ambitious environmental targets, and has been successfully pursuing a four pillar strategy including technology, operations and infrastructure improvements,” said Andrew Herdman, director general of AAPA.
“This landmark agreement reached by representatives of 191 governments meeting at ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) adds a further dimension to those efforts in the form of a comprehensive global market based measure.”
The agreement is made in hopes to reduce the growing impact of airlines on the climate, where instead of being fined or taxed for emissions, airlines will fund carbon-reducing activities such as reforestation.
Herdman urges however, that this is just the beginning. "Although a great deal of work has gone into achieving this outcome, further challenges lie ahead in ensuring that the scheme is implemented effectively by governments around the world,” he said.
“(The aviation industry) is committed to supporting ICAO in completing the technical work ahead which will provide the metrics, methodology and guidance needed to ensure a robust implementation framework."
The goal is to achieve carbon neutral growth from 2020.