EBAA, GAMA Seek Post-COVID-19 EU Support For Green Programs

EU logo.
Credit: EU

The European Business Aviation Association (EBAA) and General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) have joined with 11 other air transport bodies to urge European Union leaders to link COVID-19 recovery funding initiatives to ongoing carbon-reduction programs.

The associations published an open letter to EU ministers and the Union’s Commission, outlining a five-point strategy that would see support for “green” aviation initiatives prioritized within post-pandemic support. 

   “We have an opportunity to rebuild better by reducing air transport emissions in the most cost-efficient way,” said Athar Husain Khan, EBAA secretary general. “Business aviation’s continuous investments in sustainability, health and safety are the new normal. These support measures will help our sector regain its economic viability–a prerequisite for safeguarding both air connectivity and our ability to keep investing in decarbonization.”

   “As we begin the recovery process from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is essential that the aviation industry continue to make strides toward achieving our environmental sustainability goals,” said Pete Bunce, GAMA’s president and CEO. “If properly structured, these investment measures would further general and business aviation industry efforts to reduce carbon emissions and improve its environmental performance.”

   The proposals put forward by the group include a request for “a dedicated and stable set of policy measures and public investment plans” to develop the market, production and uptake of sustainable aviation fuels; the creation of a “green incentive scheme” which would see public funds allocated to operators who choose to retire older, less fuel-efficient aircraft in favor of newer platforms with a reduced environmental impact; an injection of COVID-19 recovery funding into pan-European research on next-generation fuels such as hydrogen; increased investment in Europe’s air traffic management system; and ensuring airport projects that relate to energy efficiency are eligible for public funding. 

   The other organizations whose heads have signed the open letter are A4E (Airlines for Europe), ACI Europe (Airports Council International Europe), AIRE (Airlines International Representation in Europe), ASD (AeroSpace & Defense Industries Association of Europe), CANSO (Civil Air Navigation Services Organization), CEEMET (European Tech & Industry Employers), EHA (European Helicopter Association), ERA (European Regions Airline Association), ETC (European Travel Commission), IAOPA Europe (International Aircraft Owner and Pilot Associations) and IATA (International Air Transport Association). 

Angus Batey

Angus Batey has been contributing to various titles within the Aviation Week Network since 2009, reporting on topics ranging from defense and space to business aviation, advanced air mobility and cybersecurity.