The European Union has agreed to start integrating air travel into its emissions trading system. This is a big step, given how the industry has often been excluded from carbon pricing schemes – especially where international travel is involved.
Arguably, the biggest piece of news is that they want to charge non-EU carriers for emission permits when they enter EU countries. This is certainly going to kick up a stink in the WTO and other multilateral trading bodies. That being said, if a global regime of carbon pricing is not to be forthcoming, the regional arrangements will need mechanisms for ensuring that imports meet their standards.
Hashing out how such standards can be applied is sure to be a difficult and extended affair.