As regular readers of this blog will know, we have spent the last six or so years working with governments to establish the world’s first sectoral market mechanism for dealing with carbon emissions. No other industry has been pushing to be charged for the growth in its CO2, but aviation realised back in 2009 with our global climate goals (another world first by any transport mode) that we needed to have some type of gap-filling system that allowed a balance between the growth in air traffic and the need to reduce the growth in CO2 from aviation.

Countdown to the ICAO Assembly

The last six years has seen a concerted effort by people working across the aviation industry to help design and get governments to agree to the scheme (now called the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation – or CORSIA). Importantly, the scheme, which we explain here, will be only one part of a range of measures to deal with aviation emissions. New technology (including sustainable alternative fuels), better operations and improved infrastructure remain the most important actions our industry can take to reduce CO2 (you can see 101 examples of these actions in the Aviation Climate Solutions). 

But, in the meantime, the CORSIA will allow us to both tackle our own emissions and also help with climate projects around the world. This is not to say that the CORSIA is ready to go, however. After six years of discussions (which really ramped up in the last three years), we are a month away from the ICAO Assembly where governments will gather to (hopefully) agree on the system. There are still negotiations going on and the real pressure is now on to agree the deal. We’ll have a blog post shortly on what the exact design of the CORSIA is currently looking like (and what we think of it).

Before then, we are launching a new campaign today to share with those government negotiators that will meet at ICAO some of the voices of the next generation of aviation leader. We have spoken to young aviation professionals from across the world about their views on how to build a sustainable aviation industry well into the future and what some of their motivations are for thinking about business in a sustainable way. Today, we speak to Robbie, who is just starting his aviation career.