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Airline tax isn’t the right choice for a better environment

Read the full article in Swedish

PA transport expert, Anders Adrem, has had a byline article published in Svenska Dagbladet discussing the need for better alternatives to airline taxes to stem the escalating carbon dioxide emissions from air transport.

Anders highlights how there’s no evidence airport tax can break the growth of aviation emissions. Instead, enhancing the efficiency of air traffic over European airspace is a better way for politicians and legislators to create environmental benefits.  

Anders says: “Aviation tax which is passed on to the passenger has been implemented in countries such as France, UK, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Ireland, Denmark and Norway. In the Netherlands, traffic decreased when the tax was introduced but an increase in Dutch travelers were found at nearby airports in neighbouring countries which led to the tax being abolished the following year. 

“Another impact flights taxes have is on the economy. According to estimates from the British Tourist Board, a full abolition of the country's aviation taxes could lead to up to 90,000 new jobs and an increase in GDP of £4.2 billion pounds per year.”

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Anders goes on to say that reducing the penetration of the European airspace is a better approach. The airspace is heavily fragmented – served by 40 air navigation service providers, generating additional costs in the range of 5 billion euro per year and more than 40 km flights per trip when compared to the average flight. This in turn generates increased fuel consumption and carbon emissions.

“Efficiencies in air traffic and harmonising policy lines could reduce emissions by 150,000 tonnes annually. We’d recommend Swedish politicians and legislators prioritise the initiatives that already exist in this area instead of implementing airport taxes,” Anders concludes.

Anders Adrem is an aviation expert at PA Consulting Group

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Maritime and Circular Economy Lead


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