Russia steps up opposition to EU emissions scheme

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Russia is seeking a moratorium on the European Union's Emissions Trading System (ETS) until a global solution can be found.

During talks last week with European Commission officials in Brussels, Russian deputy transport minister Valery Okulov argued that the EU ETS should be put on hold until a global agreement could be reached through the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

"The way in which the problem of emissions in aviation has been presented is categorically unacceptable to us," he said.

"We hope our European partners will make a decision to maintain discussions with ICAO rather than persist in their current position, and seek a global rather than a regional solution."

Okulov believes that working out a global approach to aviation emissions should be achievable through ICAO. He added: "Imposing caps on emissions unilaterally comes down to forcing the airlines into buying quotas for flights to the EU member states.

"The efficiency of market mechanisms in decreasing the environmentally harmful impact of civil aviation is not proven. They may serve as just a disguise for slapping additional fees and charges."