Aircraft Operators Show Unprecedented Level of Interest in ETS Aviation's Solutions

9 November 2009, Lisbon – Evidence is growing of chaos about to engulf the aviation sector as operators fail to deliver their CO2 monitoring, reporting and verification (MRV) plans to meet the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) deadlines, according to ETS Aviation, a new CO2 emissions company formed with the specific aim of helping aviation businesses cope with the EU’s carbon accounting scheme.

Back in September 2009, a Norton Rose Group survey revealed[1] that 94 per cent of aviation businesses in the UK were not fully prepared for the EU ETS – and a third had taken no steps to prepare for the scheme at all.

The group’s survey of transport businesses, The Way Ahead for Transport, was based on a survey of 961 individual respondents from the aviation, rail and shipping sectors from 17 June to 3 July 2009. This coincided with the first signs of improving confidence in the transport industry since the global financial crisis of late 2008, according to Norton Rose. A total of 154 respondents from the aviation sector gave their views.

Anthony Hobley, a partner at Norton Rose, said of the report’s findings: “The results here are a familiar picture and correspond with the position for most other sectors before the commencement of the EU ETS. What is clear from that experience is that the winners will be those companies who work with the regulators to ensure most effective implementation. Those who are prepared will have a business advantage over their competitors.”

The lack of preparation and timeliness by operators is indicative of a bad case of the grumps. Operators don’t seem to fully understand why they should have to jump to it, or what the consequences will be if they don’t. Yet the EU is absolutely committed to making the scheme work and giving it real teeth. That means it could become a feeding frenzy for the regulators as they impose fines up to £4,500 operators failing to complete the process. As a last resort, non-conformers can be banned from European airspace altogether.

ETS Aviation, a new company formed by ex-NetJets and TAG Aviation director David Carlisle to address the requirements placed on aviation operators by the EU ETS, is making inroads into operators’ hearts.

“Operators seem to be reluctant to make their MRV submissions because of so many uncertainties over their reporting obligations long term,” says ETS Aviation’s Managing Director David Carlisle. “We offer practical help and indeed we’ve helped lots of them – large and small – over the past couple of months. Recently we’ve added a new service called the ETS Helpdesk which can solve the MRV problem for any operator within 24–36 hours.”

Over 100 trial users within 24 hours

Last week ETS Aviation launched an online demonstration of its Aviation Footprinter™ software. This has been developed to provide operators with an easy, cost-efficient way of recording and reporting their CO2 emissions data in a format compliant with EU regulations. The company was bowled over by the level of interest. Within the first 24 hours the software was on trial with more than 100 aircraft operators from all over the world. ETS Aviation says this level of interest in new software is unprecedented. “It’s not just the approaching deadlines for MRV plans; it’s also that we’ve tackled the compliance problem in an innovative way. We make recording and reporting the data easier and quicker, and we cost less”, explains David Carlisle.

“We’re now in the process of setting up Aviation Footprinter™ agency arrangements throughout the world. And we believe our ‘easier and quicker’ approach can be applied to the necessary verifications as well. That’s why we’ve set up a company called Verifly Online (VOL) and partnered with an established verification body, GASTEC at CRE Ltd, to provide a specialist online aviation service,” he adds.

“Site visits just shouldn’t be necessary, except where there are significant irregularities in the data,” says VOL’s Managing Director Denis Quinn. “Where operators use Aviation Footprinter™ or similar software to record their data, we can complete the verification online at far lower cost.”

Both ETS Aviation and VOL are talking to flight planning companies, airlines and even manufacturers about special cost-saving deals. “The reason they’re interested is not just that we simplify the process, it’s that our software takes you a step closer to greater fuel efficiency,” continues David Carlisle. “Aviation Footprinter™ is designed to analyse your carbon emissions with the long-term aim of helping you save fuel as well as saving time and money on meeting the EU regulations.”

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