Small Emitter Opt-Out Option not available to the Aviation Industry


This week the UK's Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) announced a process for allowing small static installations and hospitals to opt-out of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme. However, as the clause of the Directive which has created this exemption only applies to static installations, this option is not available to aircraft operators.


Most notably, the new rules will allow for static installations below 25,000 t of CO2, to avoid having to surrender allowances, open registry accounts and will no longer require external verification. They will be replaced with reduction targets.


Neil Duffy, of, commented on these changes, “While it is laudable that DECC are making compliance easy for the installations they can help; it is EU level legislation which prevents them from extending this to aircraft operators so one has to ask why the legislation was written to omit aircraft operators from this opt-out. Some business jet operators emit less than 100 t annually, and have administration costs way above the cost of allowance. Further to this, no other industry has the level of standardisation that aviation has, nor do they have an organisation like Eurocontrol, who are able to provide complete, accurate and reliable figures, but they still need to be checked over by a third party verifier.”


The opt-out option will be available from 2013 onwards, which is the same time that the small emitter status is raised to 25,000 t, though neither of these changes will help the thousands of privately operated aircraft who are currently struggling with the fraud prevention rules when opening their required registry accounts and preparing for the first surrender date.


Mr Duffy added, “To make any changes on either of these issues would require a change in EU legislation, and there is no sign of this happening any time soon.” is a website designed to make compliance with the scheme as easy as possible for small emitters. It offers free advice and tips on how best to comply, aimed mostly at the smaller operators, but is equally useful to larger operators. For those requiring a more hand-on service, tailored consultancy services are also provided. Contact, or visit the website for more information.