Unlocking Compliance: A Comprehensive Guide to EU ETS, CORSIA, UK ETS, and French Decree Audits for Aviation Compliance


As the aviation industry grapples with the challenges of environmental sustainability, emissions monitoring and reporting are becoming increasingly stringent worldwide. Aircraft operators are now at the forefront of this paradigm shift, compelled to comply with regulations like the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), the Carbon Offsetting and Reduction Scheme for International Aviation (CORSIA), UK Emissions Trading Scheme (UK ETS), and the French Decree. As these regulations shape the industry’s future, navigating their complexities becomes paramount for operators seeking to ensure both regulatory adherence and sustainable aviation practices. This comprehensive guide aims to demystify these crucial mandates, empowering operators with essential insights and strategies to navigate the intricacies of compliance in this era of environmental consciousness.

Addressing Non-Compliances and System Changes

Learn from the past to shape the future. If any non-compliances were identified in the previous year, take proactive steps to rectify them. Likewise, if there have been changes to your monitoring systems, sources then update your emissions monitoring plans accordingly. A comprehensive review of record-keeping practices throughout the year is essential to ensure compliance with regulatory standards.

Internal Audits: Safeguarding Compliance

Safeguard compliance by performing internal audits of your emissions monitoring and reporting processes. This self-assessment provides an additional layer of assurance, identifying and addressing potential issues before the verification season. Keep your internal audit report ready and provide it to the external verifier, along with data and documents.

Prepare and Collect: A Solid Foundation

Before the verification season (2024 Assessment year for the 2023 Monitoring period) kicks off, it’s crucial for aircraft operators to prepare their data meticulously. Start by ensuring that all relevant fuel consumption data points as mentioned in the monitoring plan along with emissions data are accurately recorded and organized. Check for data gaps, try to coordinate internally, and reduce their percentage by means of correction. Collect/organize evidence of control activities performed on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis.

Obligations and Exemptions: Understanding the Scopes

Navigate through the intricacies of obligations and exemptions under various schemes. It’s crucial to have a clear understanding of your responsibilities within each regulatory framework. Stay abreast of any changes in obligations or exemptions that might impact your reporting.

Change in Regulations and Templates: Stay Informed

Regulations evolve over time, and it’s imperative to stay informed. Keep an eye on changes in upcoming EU ETS regulations, including alterations to reporting templates and requirements. E.g. In EU ETS, the reporting template for the 2023 monitoring period is changed. In CORSIA, use State Pairs list ‘2023’ to estimate your offsetting requirements. Stay proactive in adapting to these changes to ensure a seamless reporting and verification process.

Draft Reports and Reformulate Understanding

Start preparing draft emissions reports well in advance. This not only streamlines the verification process but also allows for a comprehensive review of your emissions monitoring and reporting processes. Reformulate your understanding based on feedback from previous audits, creating a continuous improvement cycle.

Internal Discussions and Availability for Verifier Visits

Communication is key. Internally discuss the availability for virtual or on-site visits scheduled by verifiers. Ensuring seamless coordination will contribute to a smoother verification process. Keep the lines of communication open to address any queries or concerns from the verification team promptly.

Know Your Deadline: Timing is Everything

Be acutely aware of your verification deadline. For EU ETS a few competent authorities do have different deadlines much before the global deadline of 31 March 2024. Timeliness is crucial in meeting regulatory requirements. Plan your other tasks and internal activities well in advance to avoid any last-minute hurdles. Collect, prepare, and send the data to the verifier in January, and do not wait till the last minute. Reply to verifier queries mostly as soon as possible or within the same week.


As the aviation industry continues its commitment to environmental sustainability, aircraft operators play a pivotal role in meeting regulatory requirements. By proactively preparing for the upcoming verification season, operators can not only ensure compliance with EU ETS, CORSIA, UK ETS, and French Decree audits but also contribute to the broader goal of reducing the carbon footprint of aviation.

Stay informed, stay prepared, and navigate the skies responsibly!

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