Guyana participating in ICAO high-level meeting

The Government of Guyana is currently participating at the first International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) High-level Meeting on a Global Market-Based Measure (MBM) Scheme which is being held at the ICAO Headquarters in Montreal, Canada during the period May 11-13, 2016.

Guyana also participated in the ICAO pre-event briefing which was held on May 10, 2016 to familiarize the meeting participants with the elements of the global MBM Scheme.

The Guyana delegation is led by the Hon. Annette Ferguson, M.P, Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure who has responsibility for civil aviation in Guyana and Mr. Saheed Sulaman, Acting Director, Air Transport Management, Guyana Civil Aviation Authority.

The meeting is organized to finalise a draft Assembly Resolution text on a Global Market-Based Measure Scheme which will be brought before the 39th Session of the ICAO Assembly in September 2016 in Montreal, Canada for acceptance by all ICAO member states. Once the draft Assembly Resolution is accepted at the ICAO Assembly in September 2016, it becomes binding on all states.

The International Civil Aviation Organization is working assiduously to achieve carbon neutral growth from 2020 through a “basket of measures” comprising technical, operational, and infrastructure enhancements; sustainable alternative fuels; a CO2 standard for aircraft; and the development of a global market-based measure.

The Global Market-Based Measure Scheme being established by ICAO is to provide a framework where aircraft operators of participating member states in the scheme can trade emissions through the sale or purchase of emissions units arising from international aviation.

Currently, the ICAO is working with all its member states for states to prepare and submit an action plan for CO2 emissions reduction from its international aviation activities. The action plan essentially identifies the specific voluntary measures a state intends to take in order to improve efficiency and thereby contribute to CO2 emissions reduction.

Guyana will be addressing the development of a framework for CO2 emissions reduction from international aviation to submit its CO2 action plan to the ICAO which is a voluntary and not compulsory submission for now because of the country’s level of international aviation activities. However, because of the global nature of aviation, setting up a framework for CO2 emissions reduction by ICAO member states from international aviation will become necessary in the future as ICAO, a UN body set to implement its first and second phases of the Global Market-Based Measure (MBM) Scheme in 2020 and 2026 respectively.

The aviation sector plays a critical role in facilitating connectivity, trade, commerce and tourism and the resultant of impact of climate change will have an effect on the development of the sector. Guyana’s aviation sector remains small in comparison to the rest of the world, however, the global rules and framework established by the International Civil Aviation Organisation will affect the country’s aviation activities as the rules sometimes do not take into consideration the unique challenges confronted by small developing states. It is therefore important that small states voice their views in the decision making process.

The outcome of the International Civil Aviation Organization High-level Meeting on Global Market-Based Measure Scheme will see ICAO member states playing a greater role in the reduction of CO2 emissions and thereby a greater involvement in climate change initiatives.