BA unveils scheme to support project in Chhattisgarh

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New Delhi, Jan 16 (UNI) In a step to limit the aviation's impact on climate change, British Airways today launched a new carbon offset scheme to help finance clean energy projects in developing countries, including India.

Customers offsetting their flight emissions will be supporting a biomass power plant in Mahasamund, Chhattisgarh, along with a new windfarm in one of the poorest regions of China, as well as run-of-the-river hydro electric plants in China and Brazil.

The scheme will be run with Morgan Stanley, leading providers in the sourcing of certified emissions reductions from projects developed under the UN Kyoto Protocol, a British Airways release said.

Customers can buy their offset on Ba.Com when they book their flight.

The offset cost for a London-Paris return would be about 1.50 pound and for London-New York about 16 pound.

Welcoming the scheme, UK's Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Secretary Hilary Benn expressed the hope that it would encourage BA customers to offset their flights and thus help in tackling emissions from aviation.

Ms Silla Maizey, head of corporate responsibility, said the UN framework guaranteed that offset payments would lead to genuine reductions in emissions through the projects chosen with Morgan Stanley.

''We need a broad response to climate change: controlling our emissions with cleaner aircraft, the inclusion of aviation in emissions trading and the setting of tough international emissions targets,'' she said.

In addition to the offset scheme, British Airways will invest in a range of projects to help protect the Brazilian rainforest and improve understanding of ways of combating one of the largest sources of greenhouse gases.

It will also back work, led by the Cambridge University, aimed at establishing a robust scientific understanding of the non-CO2 effects of aviation by 2012, the release added.

UNI YJ AK RK1933

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