Select Committee on Environmental Audit Minutes of Evidence

Memorandum submitted by easyJet

  I would like to take this opportunity to draw your attention to the report "Economic consideration of extending the EU ETS to include aviation" by Frontier Economics and prepared for the European Low Fares Association (ELFAA) in March this year [not printed].

  easyJet is a member of ELFAA which represents 10 European low fare airlines including Ryanair. Low fare airlines now account for 30% of intra European scheduled airline passenger journeys.

  We take our environmental responsibilities seriously, indeed the low fares business model is designed to be economically and environmentally efficient—we fly the newest and cleanest aircraft, we fly people directly to their destinations, avoiding the need for transit flights through hub airports and we have the highest seating densities and load factors in the industry ensuring that emissions per passenger are kept to a minimum.

  We often hear the accusation that aviation growth is out of control. This simply is not true. Economic growth and aviation growth track very closely together. At an EU level, aviation DIRECTLY contributes over 3 million jobs and over €200 billion of GDP. In turn, there are significant indirect benefits to many other sectors, especially tourism (and regional development). As a result the economic contribution of aviation for every kg of CO2 emitted is greater than road transport and the electricity generating industry.

  Finally, we have been supportive of the desire to include aviation into the EU Emissions Trading Scheme. However this is a complex issue and our objective is to ensure that the most environmentally efficient behaviour is rewarded and that the environmental objectives are achieved without harming the economic development of the aviation industry.

May 2006

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