COP27 highlights flight bans, private jets and travel taxes | Tech US News


As COP27 delegates in Egypt try to negotiate deals to reduce global greenhouse emissions, it was the perfect opportunity for climate protesters to highlight carbon-reducing travel policies such as taxing private jets, banning short-haul flights distance and introduce taxes for frequent travelers.

Several protests at European airports in recent days have highlighted the role of travel in climate change. Activists from Extinction Rebellion and Scientist Rebellion blocked airports across the UK and similar events took place at airports in Berlin, Milan, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Melbourne and Ibiza.

Campaigners argue for a tax on high flyers, as well as private jet users. Activists said the latter “are five to 14 times more polluting per passenger than commercial aircraft, and 50 times more polluting than trains”.

It’s a political idea that seems to be gaining traction in some EU countries. For example, France has banned the use of domestic short-haul flights from April 2022, if there is a train or bus alternative of two and a half hours or less.

And the French government recently touted the idea of ‚Äč‚Äčtaxing private jets. French Transport Minister Clement Beaune told a France 2 TV interviewer: “I think that when there is a train alternative, when there is a commercial flight, which emits four times less carbon per passenger than private planes, that should be the preferred option.”

COP27 is a good example of the difficulties in promoting sustainable travel when some delegates traveled in private planes. BBC News reported that FlightRadar data showed that 36 private planes landed in Sharm el-Sheikh between November 4 and 6, and 64 flew to Cairo, 24 of which came from Sharm el-Sheikh.

Last time it took place in Glasgow, COP26 had the largest footprint of any COP to date. In fact, the carbon footprint of COP26 was considered in some circles to be double that of COP25, mainly due to the impact of international flights to and from and many delegates being pressured because they were traveling on private jets. In their defense, significantly more people (12,000) attended COP26 in Glasgow than COP25 in Madrid.

COP27 takes place in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt, from November 6-18, and while most people will arrive by plane, a team of researchers from University College London, led by Professor Priti Parikh, has provided alternative methods of transport to Cop27, with -source calculator to measure the carbon consequences of traveling to the conference. For EU participants, instead of taking a direct flight, a train to Milan is a good option, then take a plane to cross the Mediterranean.

However, due to the location of the conference in Egypt, flights are unavoidable due to “geopolitical problems in the vicinity of Libya and Syria, and the lack of transport connections from Europe”. One of the main conclusions of the team’s report would be that, despite the need to promote global equity by organizing COPs in different countries, it would be better to locate future COPs in places accessible by larger (and more user-friendly) transport infrastructure the carbon).

Hundreds of people participate in charity events to raise awareness of COP27, many of them traveling to the conference itself in a sustainable way. Four men cycled 655 kilometers (400 miles) to Sharm El-Sheikh from the German International University in Cairo to raise awareness about climate change. Another, Ali Abdo, rides 20,000 kilometers (12,500 miles) by motorbike over 30 days from the deserts of ancient Egypt to the resort town of Sharm El-Sheikh.


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