Other Trade-Related Activities > International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)

The three main ICAO environmental goals are:

  • To limit or reduce the number of people affected by significant aircraft noise;
  • To limit or reduce the impact of aviation emissions on local air quality; and
  • To limit or reduce the impact of aviation greenhouse gas emissions on the global climate.

Environmental protection

Improving the environmental performance of aviation is a challenge ICAO takes very seriously. In fulfilling its responsibilities the Organization developed, since the late 1960s, a range of standards, policies and guidance material for the application of integrated measures to address aircraft noise and engine emissions embracing technological improvement, operating procedures, proper organization of air traffic, appropriate airport and land-use planning and the use of market based options.

Consolidated statements of continuing policies and practices related to environmental protection are revised and updated by the Council every three years for adoption by the ICAO Assembly. The present version, Assembly Resolutions A37-18 and A37-19, were adopted in October 2010. Part of ICAO’s work in the environment field work is undertaken through the ICAO Council’s Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection (CAEP), which consists of Members and Observers from States, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations representing aviation industry and environmental interests.

The ICAO Secretariat has developed an internationally approved Aviation Carbon Emissions Calculator based on the methodology established jointly by CAEP . The Calculator estimates the amount of CO2 emissions from air travel and is available on the ICAO website along with the methodology. ICAO has also developed a Green Meetings Calculator, which is a tool designed to support decision-making in reducing the carbon emissions from air travel to attend meetings, and a Fuel Savings Estimation Tool in order to assist States to estimate fuel savings from operational improvements (www.icao.int/environmental-protection/Pages/Tools.aspx).

In addition, ICAO maintains close relations with other UN policy-making bodies that have expressed an interest in civil aviation, notably with the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to which it provides regular statements on ICAO’s emission-related activities.

Partners: ICAO’s 191 contracting states, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), the World Health Organization (WHO), the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the Airports Council International (ACI), numerous civil aviation commissions and regional commissions, various associations and NGOs and others.

For more information: www.icao.int/env/