COVID-19 has put the breaks on aviation. The industry itself predicts that a return to passenger numbers from 2019 could take until 2022 or 2023. Governments around the world are spending hundreds of billions on this goal, and the industry is lobbying to further water down the already few and weak environmental regulations for aviation. But air traffic must not be allowed to return to its climate-damaging growth path! Flying is the fastest way to fry the planet and is already responsible for about 5-8% of global heating.
Negotiations are currently underway on CORSIA, the 'Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation', which is set to start next year. But the system is flawed, covers only a small fraction of the emissions of air traffic and would have cost airlines very little. Now, with the votes of the USA and the EU, among others, it could be further watered down by the ICAO, the UN International Civil Aviation Organisation.
But even a CORSIA as planned would deliver very little. The climate rules for aviation need a complete overhaul. Instead of false solutions like compensation and the hope for technological miracles, we need strong regulation in line with the 1.5 degree limit and a just reduction of air traffic.
While politicians seem to follow the industry lobby, we have to take the matter into our own hands. There are several ways to help with this. You can decide and pledge to fly less, help us with a donation, join a group that fights against aviation growth and for climate justice or get involved directly with Stay Grounded.