10 JUNE 2019
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France is to propose a new tax on flights in Europe to encourage travellers to switch to what it believes is polluting forms of transport, a source in the transport ministry told the news agency AFP.
"Different charges could be considered to reinforce the principle of 'polluter pays' and France believes that they should be weighed up in order to find the best way of doing it," the source said.
"Given the scale of the climate challenge, France believes that we need to go further and more quickly," the source added.
The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) estimates commercial flying is responsible for only 2% of global CO2 emissions.
The head of airline industry body IATA, Alexandre de Juniac, defended his members in South Korea last week.
He acknowledged that the sector was under pressure to act, but said that the public was unaware of efforts being made by the industry, including the use of new fuel-efficient airliners and biofuels.
He also criticised the idea of new 'green taxes' which he said were normally collected by governments, going into a general budget.
French president Emmanuel Macron is also keen to boost his own green credentials, having suffered an embarrassing resignation of his star environment minister last year who accused the head of state of failing to act.
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