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TAP launches IATAs Carbon Offset Program

Travel News Asia Latest Travel News Podcasts Monday, 8 June 2009

TAP is the launch airline for the IATA-administered and ready-made tool that enables airlines to offer their passengers the ability to compensate for their carbon emissions with contributions towards carbon reduction projects in developing countries.

The IATA program calculates carbon emissions based on a methodology developed by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

The system utilises the efficiencies and reliability of IATAs US$350 billion financial systems to enable airlines and their passengers to purchase their ticket and their offset at the same time.

IATA also administers the process on behalf of airlines. This includes advising on project selection, arranging the purchase of carbon credits and managing and providing offset tracking.

The IATA Carbon Offset Program invests in projects which are UN approved Certified Emissions Reductions (CER) projects and voluntary credits which comply with the recognised Gold and or Voluntary Carbon Standards.

Airlines participating in the IATA Carbon Offset Program pay for all administration costs so the passenger contribution goes to the sponsored project.

These are important reassurances that will help build passenger confidence in carbon offsets, said Giovanni Bisignani, IATAs Director General and CEO.

The offset project chosen by TAP is a renewable energy project in Brazil: the Aquarius Hydroelectric Project. Aquarius is a grid-connected run-of-river hydropower plant. It partly replaces fossil fuel-based electricity generation and already reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by approximately 15,000 tonnes CO2 equivalent per year.

Fernando Pinto, CEO of TAP, said, We at TAP are deeply concerned about the environment and feel it is our responsibility to summon up all possible energies and resources to preserve it and protect our planet. Therefore, we are enthusiastic to be the launch airline for the IATA carbon offset program. With it, we will be able to offer our customers the option to offset their emissions by saving an equivalent amount of CO2 with high quality projects. Offsetting is not a cure for climate change. But it is a responsible measure until technology can make us carbon-free. It is a voluntary scheme, but we are confident that it will be popular with our passengers as we believe that the protection of the planet is everybodys concern.

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