Business aviation and sustainability

Improving sustainability is a priority for most aviation companies, which are regularly cited as key contributors to climate change. Sustainability and good sustainable practices are becoming the norm for many organisations. EBAA and Business aviation are no exception.

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Business aviation and climate change

EBAA acts to support and guide the Business aviation sector towards improving its sustainability practices and creating a greener future for the wider transport sector as a whole.

The Business aviation community is working towards a more sustainable future in different ways. Business aviation has the ability to connect remote regions and communities, bringing economic development to places otherwise inaccessible. The industry is also dedicated towards reducing its environmental impact through the use of technology, infrastructure and operational improvements, alternative fuels, and market-based measures.

Business aviation and the EU Green Deal

Europeans want real action on the climate crisis and they want Europe to lead the way. As we look forward to Europe’s most ambitious climate action plan yet, the European Business aviation sector is determined to support the European Green Deal, its goals and underlying values.

Business Aviation Commitment on Climate Change

In 2009 the global Business aviation community, united through the leadership of the International Business Aviation Council (IBAC) and the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA), published the Business Aviation Commitment on Climate Change (BACCC), which detailed three aspirational goals and the associated mechanisms it would use to achieve these goals:

  • Carbon-neutral growth by 2020;
  • An improvement in fuel efficiency of an average of 2% per year from today until 2020;
  • A reduction in total CO2 emissions of 50% by 2050 relative to 2005

The commitment remains relevant today and creates a solid foundation for all environmental and sustainability improvements that can be made throughout the Business aviation sector. Our commitment is continually reviewed to ensure it remains relevant and that our industry is on track with its original goals.


The latest generation of Business aviation professionals are already starting to generate fresh ideas on how to fast-track sustainability across the industry.

Spearheaded by a dynamic group of young Business aviation professionals, and supported by EBAA and IBAC, the industry is developing a new, three-tiered sustainability label called S.T.A.R.S. – “Standards & Training for Aviation Responsibility and Sustainability”.

The new set of guidance will be integrated into existing IS-BAO and IS-BAH programmes – and will as well be provided standalone for organisations that do not operate aircraft, manage FBOs or provide ground-handling services as part of their activities.

The programme aims to support the Business aviation industry by helping to increase awareness of social & environmental issues that can be addressed by the industry, build partnerships, and introduce guidance and best practices that will benefit – at once – our companies, customers, communities and society at large.

European Union Emissions Trading System

The European Union Emissions Trading System (EU-ETS) was originally introduced in 2005 to drive emissions reduction improvements in the energy and industrial sectors. From 2012, aviation will be included in the EU-ETS, meaning all aircraft operators operating in the EU will be subject to the scheme.

The EU-ETS is what’s known as a “cap and trade” system, where operators have to purchase allowances to cover their emissions outputs.

The scheme has become the cornerstone of the EU’s policy to combat climate change – which now falls under the EU’s Green Deal policy framework – and covers approximately 45% of all Greenhouse Gas Emissions across the EU.

EBAA stands for an alignment between the EU-ETS and CORSIA, to ensure the European Business aviation sector is not forced to participate in both schemes simultaneously.


The Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA) forms part of ICAO’s global ambition to reduce the international aviation sector’s carbon emissions and has been developed to support the industry’s movement towards carbon neutral growth.

The CORSIA scheme was introduced to allow operators aircraft operators with operations falling within the certain parameters to balance CO2 emissions by purchasing carbon credits on an annual basis. EBAA supports having one global market-based carbon reduction scheme to assist operators.

Contact the Policy
and Regulatory team

Do you want to know more about this issue?  Get in touch:

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Bruce Parry Senior Manager, Environment

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