100 signatures reached
To: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and others
Aviation Eco-Tax to offset climate impact of flying
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, Hon Phil Twyford, Hon Megan Woods, Hon James Shaw,, Hon Kelvin Davis, Hon Peeni Henare, Hon Shane Jones, Hon Julie Anne Genter, Hon Aupito Sio, Hon Carmel Sepuloni, Hon David Parker, Hon David Clark, Hon Eugenie Sage, Hon Nanaia Mahuta
Flying is far too cheap.
If it cost more, people would fly less often. Aviation is currently under-taxed compared to other modes of transport. Many countries already levy an Aviation Tax - including Austria, Britain, France, Germany, Norway and most recently Sweden.
Please impose an Aviation Tax in New Zealand on all flight tickets so that people who want to fly are paying what it actually costs in environmental terms, and so that these costs are not passed onto future generations. The cost of climate de-stabilisation is a much steeper price to pay than a few extra dollars now.
The revenues "should be earmarked so as to most effectively guide environmental policy" toward cutting emissions. As virtually all other forms of transport are now taxed, the lack of an Aviation Tax amounts to a tax break or indirect subsidy for airlines.
The fee should be variable and based on the climate impact of the flight.
Why is this important?
Although aviation only accounts for about four percent of all warming activity, it is growing at a rate of five percent each year. This means it is on track to double in 15 years as people in poorer countries become accustomed to the kind of lifestyles westerners have been enjoying for decades.
People living in New Zealand are among the worst offenders for greenhouse gas emissions from aviation. There are no currently-viable technologies that can enable people to fly without adversely affecting the climate.
In New Zealand the cost of taking a bus or train is very high relative to flying. Flying is so cheap there is no incentive to travel by means which emit less CO2.
In Sweden the amount added is very moderate, ranging from $10 to around $60. If you can afford to buy a ticket, you can also afford to pay the tax. Despite the fact that the amount is so small, the effect in Sweden has been very positive, with a decline in flight passengers and rapid growth in train ridership. There has been a significant shift in attitudes and these are outcomes we need in New Zealand as well.
Each of you holds a portfolio which will either be impacted by climate de-stabilisation, or is directly linked to taxing aviation. Please bring in an Aviation Tax now.