Keep #APD – the counter-campaign
Until we get a proper tax on carbon we need to keep Air Passenger Duty to discourage unnecessary flying.
There had been straws in the wind and now there is a concerted campaign to abolish Air Passenger Duty (APD) – see http://www.afairtaxonflying.org/ The campaign is backed by Manchester Airport Group (majority ownership by councils in Greater Manchester), and Greater Manchester Chamber of Commerce. We are launching a counter-campaign – see below and please lend your support.
Total carbon footprint due to ‘personal flights’ accounts for 11.19% of Greater Manchester’s emissions but the aviation sector only accounts for 1.3% of the economy though this is growing rapidly (3% in 2011)*. That’s a big ecological cost with relatively little benefit. Indeed, Manchester City Council’s budget papers reveal that the city gets less than one per cent of its budget from the airport.
Aviation is already highly subsidised. There is no VAT on domestic flights nor on flights originating in the EU. There is typically no VAT/sales tax on other international flights. There is no tax on aviation fuel. There are hidden subsidies for infrastructure costs, not to mention the social costs from noise and congestion. APD is the only tax on aviation. But they want more – tax free flying – things must be desperate!
The campaign makes much of a speculative report from Price Waterhouse Coopers who say (despite other evidence from Manchester’s Sustainable Consumption Institute) that reducing or abolishing APD would increase the UK’s Gross Domestic Product. We don’t see this as a good thing. We do need to rebalance and rebuild local economies, but GDP doesn’t measure progress on this. It promotes the wrong kind of investment where money leaches out of our area, which yet more aviation will make worse.
What can you do?
Sign the petition at http://tinyurl.com/p82o92a
Write to your MP asking them to oppose such a move and campaign for properly designed carbon taxes and carbon emissions caps. http://www.writetothem.com/
Write to your councillor asking them to disassociate themselves from Manchester Airport Group’s involvement in the campaign. http://www.writetothem.com/
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