European airlines having to fly empty flights due to continuing…

european-airlines-having-to-fly-empty-flights-due-to-continuing…

European airlines having to fly empty flights due to continuing…

European airlines having to fly empty flights due to continuing slot use requirement
2022-01-09 10:53:00
During the height of the Covid pandemic, the EU suspended the normal slot allocation process for airlines, that had forced them to use at least 80% of their slots – or lose them. The aim is to ration space at busy airports. During Covid, most airports had below half as many flights as in 2019.  Now the EU has decided to start reinstating the slot use rules, and in December the European Commission set the threshold to 50% for the winter travel season.  Lufthansa Group, which includes Brussels Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Eurowings and Swiss said it would have to run18,000 unnecessary flights from mid-December to mid-March to comply.  That is crazy in terms of carbon (and airline costs, for zero benefit).  Lufthansa said it plans to cancel 33,000 scheduled flights by the end of March because of a slump in demand caused by Omicron.  In the US, slot rules are still suspended. In the UK the suspension continues until the end of March 2022. Greenpeace called the empty flights “absurd” and pointed to “a new low for the sector that is kept afloat with government support”. .Tweet   EU red tape farce as planes forced to fly around Europe with NO passengers – ‘Unnecessary’ AIRLINE COMPANIES have blamed the European Union for pushing them to run tens of thousands of “ghost flights” in order to maintain their airport landing slots. By ASTHA SAXENA  (Express) Jan 8th, 2022 The directives that cause massive damage to the environment have been highly criticised by the environmentalists with many of them requesting the EU to alter the new rules. The rules, which normally require airlines to use at least 80% of their allocated slots at airports, were waived in early 2020 as the coronavirus hit the continent. But since then, the bloc has begun reinstating them, and last month the European Commission set the threshold to 50% for the winter travel season. Lufthansa Group, which includes Brussels Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Eurowings and Swiss had to take 18,000 unnecessary flights from mid-December to mid-March to comply with Brussel’s guidelines, the company said.  The airline group said it plans to cancel 33,000 scheduled flights by the end of March because of a slump in demand driven by the wave of omicron infections across the continent. “That benefits the climate and the airlines.” Boris Ogurksy, a Lufthansa spokesman, said: “Other regions of the world are taking a more pragmatic approach here, for example [in the US] by temporarily suspending slot rules due the current pandemic situation.  [The suspension of the slot rules in the UK has continued ever since early in the pandemic, to avoid planes flying empty, just to keep a (valuable) slot. ] Carsten Spohr, the airline group’s CEO, has previously described many of the 18,000 trips as “empty, unnecessary” flights. George Gilkinet, Belgium’s mobility minister, called for Brussels to put an end to this “environmental, economic and social nonsense” after it emerged his country’s national flag carrier was being forced to make so many empty flights. Teenage environmentalist, Greta Thunberg, sarcastically tweeted: “The EU surely is in a climate emergency mode.” Greenpeace called the empty flights “absurd” and pointed to “a new low for the sector that is kept afloat with government support”. Stay Grounded, a campaign group, said operating empty planes was an example of “bull**** flights”. The group said: “It seems like the fact that we’re in a severe climate crisis and that flights are the fastest way to fry the planet has not arrived in the heads of decision makers and airlines. If it had, empty flights would not be allowed anymore.” https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1546786/EU-flights-farce-empty-europe-Lufthansa-ont . See earlier: Hansard: Airports Slot Allocation (Alleviation of Usage Requirements) (No. 2) Regulations 2021 Volume 815: debated on Tuesday 19 October 2021 Under ordinary circumstances, the 80:20 rule helps to encourage efficient use of scarce airport capacity while allowing airlines a degree of flexibility in their operations. In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the EU Commission waived the 80:20 rule for the summer 2020 and winter 2020 seasons. Following the UK’s departure from the EU, the UK Government decided to extend this waiver to cover the summer 2021 season, going through until the end of October 2021, through the Airports Slot Allocation (Alleviation of Usage Requirements) Regulations 2021. Through the pr

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