The European Union's plans to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from airplanes. The 27-country bloc's plan to regulate airline emissions at talks in Oslo under EU law, requires any airline operating to or from an EU airport after January 1 to participate in the bloc's cap-and-trade system.
A top EU court on Tuesday will hear a case brought by U.S. carriers through their trade group, arguing the EU regulation violates international law. Washington isn't a party to the suit at the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg, but opposes the EU law.
The EU's plan offers the U.S. a way to meet a commitment made by the administration of President Barack Obama in 2009 to cut U.S. greenhouse gas emissions by 17% in 2020 from 2005 levels and to help raise $100 billion annually by 2020 to fight global warming. Under the EU plan, 15% of pollution credits for airlines will be auctioned off, potentially raising several hundred million dollars that could go toward the funding target. The other 85% of credits are being given without charge. (WSJ, 6/30/2011)