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Open Letter to ICAO Parties on global market-based measure for aviation


Dear Parties of the International Civil Aviation Organization, dear Ministers,

We, the undersigned, representing 64 networks, organizations and concerned European Members of the European Parliament from 28 countries, call on you to show bold political leadership and do everything in your power to reach an ambitious, binding, environmentally robust agreement to address aviation emissions in order to contribute to fulfilling the Paris commitment to limit global warming to 1.5ºC above pre-industrial levels.

International aviation is a top ten global polluter. In 2014, the sector emitted more CO2 into the atmosphere than the combined emissions of the 129 lowest emitting countries, causing an estimated 4.9% of all global warming. Left unaddressed, aviation emissions are expected to grow by up to 300% by 2050, which will breach our global carbon budget and significantly undermine the Paris target.

ICAO’s next General Assembly in October is your best opportunity to make sure aviation does its fair share to tackle climate change, in line with the rest of the world’s efforts. ICAO has taken almost 20 years to get to this point and we cannot afford any further delay.

The global market-based mechanism (GMBM), designed to fulfill the ‘carbon neutral growth 2020’ goal, can only deliver real climate action if you adopt stringent and transparent rules as well as high environmental standards. Consequently, we, the undersigned organisations, call on you to:

  • Set ambitious targets: ICAO resolution must acknowledge the Paris agreement and recognise the need to pursue urgent efforts to limit global warming to 1.5°C. In this regard, the carbon neutral growth 2020 goal must be a binding first step, with provisions to increase ambition over time. In order to preserve the overall goal, any exemptions, e.g. for new entrants or poorer countries, in the GMBM should be compensated by greater emissions reductions by non-exempt participants.
  • Guarantee environmental integrity: it is of utmost importance that mitigation projects developed to compensate for aviation’s emissions actually deliver real, additional, permanent, verified reductions and fulfill strong environmental and social criteria. Consequently, credit quality criteria for purchasing offset credits should be mandatory for all operators and a negative list banning projects with known negative environmental or social impacts (e.g. large hydro, fossil fuel projects) should be established.
  • Avoid double counting: the resolution must include provisions for robust accounting and MRV to ensure that credits are not counted multiple times, while being transparent and consistent with efforts and actions taken under the UNFCCC.
  • Adopt transparent decision making: more transparency will bring more confidence in the measure. Negotiating documents should be made public and options for public participation should be provided.

The ICAO High Level Meeting held in Montreal from May 11 to May 13 will be an important moment for you to discuss the integrity and the ambition of the GMBM. We ask that you keep in mind our requests for a robust GMBM during the discussions.


List of organisations supporting, by country:


  • Climates
  • Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns
  • Transport & Environment
  • WWF


  • Friends of the Earth Australia


  • Nature Code


  • Aid Organization
  • Center for Participatory Research and Development -CPRD-


  • Carbon Market Watch

Burkina Faso

  • Association Faso Enviprotek -AFEP-BURKINA-


  • Center for Support to Local Initiatives Development and assistance to vulnerable persons -CIDEP BURUNDI-


  • Actions Citoyennes des Volontaires pour l’Emergence du Cameroun en 2035 –ACVEC-2035-
  • Association Camerounaise pour le Développement, l’Entraide Sociale et la Protection de l’Environnement –ACDESPE-
  • Cameroon League for Development
  • Cameroon Youth Initiative for Rural Development –CAMYIRD-
  • Cercle des chrétiens pour la promotion des louanges, l’adoration, le réveil, l’intercession, le témoignage, l’évangélisation et les actions humanitaires -Mission CLARITE
  • Environmental Protection and Development Association -EPDA-
  • Education for all Cameroon –EFACAM-
  • Fondation des Femmes Actives pour la Promotion de l’Education de la Femme et de l’Enfant –FAPEFE-
  • Global Forestry Conclave and Sustainable Development
  • Green Horizon
  • Universal Union for Consumer Protection and Civil Abuse –UNUCOPCA-
  • Women In Development


  • Association québécoise de lutte contre la pollution atmosphérique –AQLPA-
  • Sierra Club Canada Foundation


  • Mujeres del comun

Democratic Republic of Congo

  • Actions communautaires pour le développement intégral

Republic of the Congo

  • Association Congolaise pour le Développement Agricole –ACDA-
  • Jeunes Volontaires pour l’Environnement


  • Bread for the World
  • Naturschutzbund Deutschland –NABU-


  • Abibimman Foundation


  • Mesa Nacional de Cambio Climático


  • Clean Air Action Group


  • Gujarat Forum on CDM
  • Manipur Nature Society


  • #PowerShiftMsia


  • Entornos educativos


  • Global south initiative

The Netherlands

  • Hivos


  • Climate Change Network Nigeria
  • Development Research and Synergy Initiative
  • International Centre For Women Empowerment & Child Dev –ICWECD-
  • Poverty Alleviation for the Poor Initiative
  • Smiles Africa International


  • Stowarzyszenie Ekologiczne EKO-UNIA
  • Polish Climate Coalition


  • Quercus – Associação Nacional de Conservação da Natureza


  • International Network for the Prevention of Elder Abuse –INPEA-


  • Climate Action Network Tanzania

United Kingdom

  • Aviation Environment Federation
  • Foundation for GAIA
  • Transform Scotland
  • Worldview impact foundation

United States

  • Citizens for global solutions
  • EarthJustice
  • SustainUS

Members of the European Parliament

  • Karima Delli, France
  • Bas Eickhout, The Netherlands
  • Yannick Jadot, France
  • Keith Taylor, UK

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