Introducing CORSIA: a global offsetting scheme.



The aviation sector is developing the world’s first global market mechanism – in the form of a scheme which will offset the growth in international aviation CO2 after 2020.

The International Civil Aviation Organization, bringing together governments, industry and environmental groups, has been working for the past four years to design the system, which was agreed at the 2016 ICAO Assembly. The Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation, more commonly known as CORSIA, was result of this work 

Read below for more information about CORSIA.




CORSIA was formally agreed by all 191 members states represented at the 2016 ICAO Assembly in Montreal. This agreement, helps aviation towards its goal of carbon-neutral growth. You can read more about the structure of the scheme here.

With the main political agreement now in place, the sector’s attention is now shifting towards some of the more technical elements of the scheme which have yet to be determined. Negotiations are ongoing to find agreement on reporting requirements and what kinds of offsets can be used. These crucial elements will need to be agreed by ICAO before the scheme formally begins in 2020. However, there is a lot of work taking place already preparing both airlines and governments for the start of the CORSIA.



The aviation industry has been pushing for governments to agree on this global scheme for the last six years. It is a key part of our climate action, which also includes new technology (and sustainable alternative fuels), better operations and improved infrastructure.

You can read an open letter aviation industry leaders sent to government negotiators, urging them to develop the scheme. Our Position Paper for ICAO Assembly 39 which was released before the Assembly, is also available.

As part of the negotiations, governments have decided to make the first part of the scheme voluntary for States. You can read how industry views the CORSIA here. We are now encouraging all countries to volunteer to be part of the scheme, from as early as possible. A number already have, which is great to see: we will be keeping note of them here.

This will ensure the scheme is environmentally effective and show great climate leadership, particularly by developing nations. There is still time for states to volunteer, even though the 2016 ICAO Assembly is over.

But the CORSIA is not the only thing aviation must do on climate change. We have already achieved so much (did you know a flight you take today will produce around half the CO2 than the same flight in 1990?) and colleagues across the industry are working on ways to reduce fuel use and emissions. Just check out our Aviation Climate Solutions report for 101 case studies of climate action already underway.

The CORSIA will help us to meet our climate obligations in the mid-term, whilst also allowing aviation to continue to grow and provide jobs and economic benefits through improved connectivity.


We have been speaking to some of today’s young aviation professionals from across the sector about their motivations for doing business with an eye to sustainability.

Hear from Ollie, Jodi, Robbie, Monica and all their colleagues have to say about their sustainability point of view.

Their message to the delegates at the 39th ICAO Assembly was that climate change is not a problem we can wait to solve. They urged governments to take an historic step forward last year. One which will help ensure that our industry can help connect the world, sustainably, for years to come.

Our sustainable future starts now.