Emissions trading in the aviation sector

Aircraft operators must move now to secure free certificates in future

Although aviation emissions trading has not officially started, preliminary work is at full-speed. Only those air carriers who submit so-called monitoring plans for recording transport data and emissions of their aircraft to the German Emissions Trading Authority (DEHSt) at the Federal Environment Agency can expect to receive free allocation of certificates in future.

The new EU emissions trading directive stipulates that the aviation sector will be included in the EU emissions trading scheme as of 2012, and reporting obligations already commence in 2010. Essentially every carrier whose aircraft depart or land within the European Union will be affected by this extension of the emissions trading scheme. In future, the same will apply as for certain installations in the energy sector and other industries: air carriers must submit annual emissions reports and, starting in 2012, surrender as many emissions allowances (certificates) as correspond to their actual emissions of carbon dioxide.

The Greenhouse Gas Emissions Trading Law (TEHG) regulates the infrastructure of Europe’s emissions trading scheme in Germany. The amendment to the law entered into force on 22 July 2009. The amendment to TEHG along with the data collection ordinance 2020 (Datenerhebungsverordnung 2020 - DEV 2020) of 25 July 2009 provide the legal foundation for data collection to include the aviation sector in emissions trading. DEV 2020 prescribes the deadline for submissions of monitoring plans to DEHSt. It is six weeks after publication of the list of aircraft operators appropriated to Germany, which the European Commission is now compiling. As scheduled date of publication is August, submission deadline is expected to be in September/October. DEHSt assures notification by year’s end to all operators who submit monitoring plans up until 31 August 2009. To support operators in this respect, DEHSt has made a great deal of information and tools, e.g. sample monitoring plans, available on their home page. 

The German Emissions Trading Authority (DEHSt) at the Federal Environment Agency is the German national authority entrusted with the implementation of European emissions trading in both stationary installations and the aviation sector. Their mandate includes allocation and issuance of emissions allowances, review of emissions reports, and administration of the emissions trading registry.

German Environment Agency

Wörlitzer Platz 1
06844 Dessau-Roßlau