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French Decree

On 26 April 2022, the French government released a Decree (n° 2022-667) related to the offsetting of greenhouse gas emissions from domestic aviation. This new scheme is a hybrid scheme between EU ETS and CORSIA: the scope criteria is based on the EU ETS rules while the emissions units offsetting is based on CORSIA. 

Scope of the scheme and timeline

The new scheme applies to French domestic flights only with the exception of flights to, from and within the outermost regions (DOM). An operator is subject to the French Decree if the two following conditions are met:
  1. the operator is subject to the EU ETS scheme,
  2. and the operator emits more than 1,000 tCO2 on French domestic routes from 2022. 
Another important element of the scheme’s design is its gradual ramp-up to 100% offsetting:
  • In 2022, operators are required to offset 50% of their emissions,
  • In 2023, operators are required to offset 70% of their emissions,
  • and, from 2024, operators are required to offset 100% of their emissions. 
The French Decree outlines the following key dates for compliance:
31.03.2023 – deadline to submit a verified 2022 EU ETS Annual Emissions Report (AER) to the DGAC by email (dta-article147-bf@aviation-civile.gouv.fr). For the national offsetting requirements, useful information will be located in tab [Emissions Data], § 8a (b) raw 34 + tab [Annex] § 11 (b).
30.04.2023 – deadline for the cancellation of emissions units (carbon credits) used or acquired to offset 50% of your 2022 verified emissions on French domestic flights.
01.06.2023 – deadline to submit your offsetting report and a verified emissions unit cancellation report to the DGEC by email (compensation-article147@developpement-durable.gouv.fr). 

Offsetting Report

This Offsetting Report must includes the list of projects and their types (i.e. carbon reduction or carbon sequestration), the location of the project, the activity sector, the quantity of claimed emissions, the methodology used, the year when the project started, information related to financing, and all pertinent elements to assess the eligibility of the projects. 

More specifically, the Offsetting Report includes:
  • Total offsetting credits and respect of minimal geographical shares in the EU
  • Number of projects funded
  • Detailed information on each project funded
  • Specific information in case of non respect of minimal geographical share in the EU
  • Specific information in case of use of transitionnal measures
  • List of documents in Annex
    • Cancellation or attribution of credits to the operator
    • Verification of the report by an accredited verifier
    • Other documents linked with previous information

Emissions Unit Criteria

Emissions Units shall be recognized either by the “Bas Carbone” label or by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) under CORSIA. 
Eligible Emissions Units cannot be from projects helping to reduce aircraft emissions. Furthermore, priority is given to sequestration projects located in France or in the European Union Member States. 
Finally, Emissions Units cannot be used under more than one scheme simultaneously.  

More specifically, emissions units must meet the following eligibility criteria:
  • Carbon credits respecting offsetting principles (Measurability, Additionality, Permanence, Transparency)
  • Eligible units under CORSIA and French Label Bas Carbone projects are eligible
  • Other credits or projects will be scrutinized
  • Starting date of projects: 1 January 2020
Geographical preference of Emissions Units:
  • Development of offsetting projects in the EU
  • Minimal share of offsetting from projects in the EU
    • 20% in 2022 – on a share of 50% of emissions covered by offsetting obligation
    • 35% in 2023 – on a share of 75% of emissions covered by offsetting obligation
    • 50% in 2024 (with revue clause) – on a share of 100% of emissions covered by offsetting obligation
  • If minimal share not achieved, operator needs to justify the unavailability of EU credits under 40€/tCO2 and on the volume required
  • Justifications could be commercial prospects, mail exchanges before the 1 March with at least 5 providers of offsetting projects

Transitional measures

  • Share of emissions covered by offsetting obligation increasing over time
  • Share of minimum EU offsetting increasing over time
  • For EU projects :
    • Funding of new projects until 1 January 2026 are eligible
    • Need of a contract between the operator and the project developper
      • Ensuring that emissions reduction / credit will be sold to the operator
      • With a determined volume of credits
    • Only projects with a duration of 5 years
    • Monitoring each year until the verification of emissions of the projects
    • Surplus or deficit of emissions reduction need to be corrected in the two following years
    • => one project funded could be used for two/three years, but need to have a clear monitoring in the offsetting report

Biodiversity bonus

The requirements are not finalized (ongoing public consultation).
  • Principle :
    • Eligible project could account for 150% for offsetting requirements : ex (1 project with 1000 tCO2 credits could be accounted for 1500 tCO2 for the offsetting requirement of the operator)
    • Limit of 15% of this bonus for the operator (ex: +500 tCO2 could be accounted up to 15% of the offsetting requirement of the operator)
  • Criteria:
    • Forestry (Diversity of species, use of sustainable certification of wood products, use of indegenious species…)
    • Agriculture (Project with organic farms, specific requirements on pasture and non farmland)
    • Ecological lands (use of management documents)

The Verification process and next steps

Operators are required to have their EU ETS Anual Emissions Report (AER) and their Offsetting Report verified by an independent accredited verifier. Penalty fees amounting to 100 EUR may be applicable if an operator does not comply with this scheme. 
If you have any questions on the scheme itself or wish to know how Verifavia can help you with the verification of the Offsetting Report, please contact us

Verifavia has received its operational eligibility to perform the verfication the 2022 offsetting reports from COFRAC on May 23rd, 2023. Refer to the dispositions specified in Article 8 of the Order of February 6th, 2023 for more details.

Visit the DGAC website on the French Decree