Emissions trading scheme: collecting aviation data in 2018

The integration of the aviation sector is a necessary step for linking the Swiss emissions trading scheme (ETS) with that of the European Union. The Ordinance that governs the collection of data from the aviation sector has been in force since 1 July 2017. In line with the EU’s intentions, it concerns only domestic flights within Switzerland or flights from Switzerland to member states of the European Economic Area (EEA).

The Agreement between the European Union and the Swiss Confederation on the linking of their greenhouse gas emissions trading systems was signed on 23 November 2017. After ratification by both parties, Swiss companies will be able to access a larger and more liquid market and enjoy the same competition conditions as European companies.

The integration of CO2 emissions from the civil aviation sector into Switzerland’s emissions trading scheme is a prerequisite for linking the two schemes. This is already the case in the European system. The European emissions trading scheme currently only encompasses flights within the EEA (i.e. the EU, plus Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein), an arrangement the European Commission intends to maintain for the time being.

The Ordinance that regulates the collection of aviation-related data for Switzerland, in preparation for this link to the EU, has been in force since1 July 2017. In line with the European Commission’s intentions, the Ordinance applies only to domestic flights and to flights from Switzerland to an EEA member state. In order to determine how many allowances are available for aviation in the Swiss ETS, and how many emission allowances can be allocated free of charge to aircraft operators (companies or private individuals), the data have to be collected in the form of tonne-kilometres. The Ordinance specifies the details of this.

Around 240 aircraft operators, of which around 230 are foreign and about 10 are Swiss operators, are already included in the EU ETS, and will also be affected by the Swiss data collection.

The aircraft operators in question had to submit a monitoring plan to the FOEN for approval by 30 September 2017. This plan described how the relevant tonne-kilometres would be recorded in 2018. Data will be collected from 1 January to 31 December 2018. The operators will then have to submit a verified monitoring report giving tonne-kilometre data by 31 March 2019.

Templates for drawing up a monitoring plan and report in accordance with the provisions of the Ordinance are available on this website under “Documents”. In addition, guidelines for preparing a monitoring plan, plus a sample monitoring plan and a collection of frequently asked questions, have also been posted on the site. The text of the Ordinance and an accompanying explanatory report can be viewed under “Legislation”.

Questions should be addressed to: emissions-trading@bafu.admin.ch

Last modification 18.06.2019

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