A leading aviation body has thrown its backing behind the idea of a single European airspace, putting efficiency and the reduction of carbon emissions at the top of its agenda and pressing France to use its current European Union presidency to this end.
The International Air Transport Association (IATA) urged new cooperative measures at Geneva’s third aviation and environment summit – and was among 13 organisations signing a declaration acknowledging the aviation industry’s environmental responsibility.
Also garnering the support of leading aircraft manufacturers Airbus and Boeing, the new pledge challenges governments to compose a new framework for global emissions management while offering further support to green research and development.
According to Thomson Financial, Giovanni Bisignani, director-general and chief executive officer of the IATA, said: "We must encourage President Sarkozy to take leadership to tear down borders and build a single European sky."
Mr Bisignani also drew attention to a recent report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, claiming that increased competition in air travel could provide green answers by delivering a 12 per cent efficiency increase.
The call for renewed efforts on climate change comes as the European Commission faces increasing pressure to review its ambitious targets for biofuels.
Setting high targets for biomass contributions to road transport and aviation fuel by 2020, the Commission has been questioned over growing evidence on the negative impact of biofuel production on food shortages.