ICAO has announced that the total number of States participating in its Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) has risen to 100. The states that have recently joined, thereby adding significant momentum in support of ICAO’s climate work, are Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Cook Islands, Gambia, Grenada, Kiribati, Nauru, Oman, Saint Kitts and Nevis, South Sudan, Suriname, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tuvalu, and Vanuatu.
CORSIA is an important element to complement the basket of measures that ICAO is promoting to reduce the climate impact of flying. The other measures being undertaken include technological innovation, operational improvement, and the implementation of sustainable aviation fuels.
While the CORSIA implementation of CO2 monitoring, reporting and verification has been fully on track, more participating States will bring ICAO States closer to meeting the global aspirational goal of carbon neutral growth for international aviation. This goal was agreed through ICAO.
For States with particular interest in eco-tourism, such as island States, their CORSIA participation will provide the additional benefit of greening air transport connections to the rest of the world.
Commenting on the development, ICAO Council president Salvatore Sciacchitano said: “I highly welcome the announcements and engagement of more States to volunteer to join CORSIA. The increasing number of ICAO Member States’ participation in CORSIA sends a strong signal in terms of ICAO’s continued commitment to addressing CO2 emissions from international aviation, as recently emphasised by the Council. This timely leadership will help to build the strong momentum for global climate action in the lead up toward the next ICAO assembly and beyond.”
In the spirit of 2021 as the “make it or break it” year for global climate action to build strong momentum, ICAO’s deputy director for the environment, Jane Hupe, added that “Joining CORSIA is a sign from Member States of commitment to climate action in aviation through ICAO. We stand fully behind those States in responding to the climate change challenge, facilitating concrete actions.”
Back in March, Sciacchitano declared that there was an end in sight to the pandemic in terms of the recovery of the international aviation sector. The president’s comments came as the ICAO Council announced it had approved six new Covid-19 recommendations and amended two others.