KABUL (BNA) France has formally banned domestic flights on short routes that can be covered by train in less than two-and-a-half hours in a move aimed at reducing airline emissions.
The change, which came into effect on Tuesday, will mostly rule out air trips between Paris and regional hubs such as Nantes, Lyon, and Bordeaux, with connecting flights unaffected.
Max Boycoff, chairman of environmental studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder, said the French law will be a test case for governments around the world.
Although the measure was included in a 2021 climate law and already applied in practice, some airlines had asked the European Commission to investigate whether it was legal, the report sind on the media.
The law specifies train services on the same route must be frequent, timely, and well-connected to meet the needs of passengers who would otherwise travel by air – and able to absorb the increase in passenger numbers.
Laurent Donceel, interim head of industry group Airlines for Europe (A4E), said governments should support “real and significant solutions” to airline emissions, rather than “symbolic bans”.
A4E highlighted its own net zero by 2050 strategy, which includes switching from jet fuel to non-fossil sources and deploying battery or hydrogen-powered aircraft.