The council of UN aviation body ICAO is currently debating whether or not to change the baseline of its CORSIA offset scheme.

This would further slacken the only climate policy that exists for international aviation. THREAD 1/n
3/n In short:

CORSIA is a system set up to allow airlines to pay to continue polluting by buying offsets.

It was always covering only a small portion of aviation emissions (growth above 2020 levels).
5/n NGOs have warned the baseline change will make an already weak scheme all but completely ineffective, with no obligations on airlines to even offset emissions for up to 5-6 yrs.

A group of them just sent this letter to the council asking resist calls for the change
6/n Some things to note from that letter.

The only reason ICAO even - pretty nonsensically - set a *baseline which began in the future???* in the first place was because the industry group IATA wanted this.

IATA is now calling for a baseline change because of COVID-19 impacts.
7/n The letter also notes that:

- the industry has already received tens of billions of taxpayer dollars
- there is already a flexibility mechanism built in CORSIA that allows them to greatly reduce offset obligations.

In short - is this change really needed?
10/n Several aviation climate experts have already all but given up on ICAO as a forum for change and are concentrating on Europe instead, where there are some promising, if still too slow, developments.
11/n These include:
- Possible kerosene tax
- Strengthening EU ETS/ possible widening to flights from outside EU
- Research/possible regulation on sustainable aviation fuels
- (Very) vague effort to consider non-CO2 climate impacts of aviation https://www.europarl.europa.eu/doceo/document/E-9-2019-004022_EN.html
As ICAO likes to point out, it is governments who make decisions at ICAO.

The worry is governments are going to treat climate policies as something that is "nice to have" in good times but the first to be cut in the name of growth in bad times.
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