05 Jun 2019, 14:18
Benjamin Wehrmann

Germany’s governing CDU considers taxation of kerosene to curb aviation emissions

dpa / Spiegel Online

The governing conservative CDU/CSU alliance in Germany considers to end the tax exemption for kerosene in a bid to reduce the aviation sector’s impact on carbon emissions, news agency dpa reports in an article carried by website Spiegel Online. “We want to raise airline customers' awareness to the ecologic consequences of air travel,” a paper on climate policy agreed on by the regional and federal heads of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives says, according to the article. The CDU/CSU’s leaders write that they intend to “steer and set incentives” in the aviation sector through “evaluating the end of tax exemption for airplane fuels and an aviation tax”.

Emissions from air travel, a fast-growing source of greenhouse gases, have increasingly shifted into the focus of public attention in recent months, both in Germany and across Europe, with leading climate researchers and several politicians calling for radical measures to reduce its impact on global heating. Aviation is currently taxed in different forms in Europe, from VAT on domestic flights to airport taxes, but fuel is exempt from levies thanks to an international agreement from 1944. Other countries do impose fuel taxes on domestic flights though, including Canada, Japan, Saudi Arabia and the United States, according to EurActiv. Aircraft manufacturers like Airbus have said they are intensively working on ways to decarbonise air travel but according to Germany’s Aerospace Center (DLR), low carbon technology for airplanes will be available at a commercial-scale only in 15 to 20 years.

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