The closure of a large part of European airspace after the eruption of the Icelandic volcano Eyjafjallajökull in April led to an unsustainable situation, with severe consequences for both passengers and the aviation sector. The increase in volcano activity of 4 May is a reminder that the situation is ongoing and that it is imperative to draw important lessons from the crisis.
How does the Commission evaluate the EU response to the crisis and the crisis management tools available to the Union? Can the Commission give any more details on the development of a mobility action plan to help the EU cope better during such crises?
The Single European Sky initiative (SES) is one of the most important aspects of EU aviation legislation and should have provided better coordination during the crisis. In its conclusions of 4 May the Council agrees on the ‘nomination without delay of the Functional Airspace Blocks coordinator’. By which date is this foreseen? What other measures can be taken to ensure that the SES plan is implemented more quickly?
How does the Commission evaluate the effectiveness of EU passenger rights legislation during the crisis and how will the Commission tackle the reluctance to comply with the European legislation? What assessment has it made of the gaps which may occur with regard to third-country carriers?
The aviation sector in particular has suffered greatly during this crisis. In order to ensure the equitable distribution of any financial assistance to the sector, measures should be EU-wide. Given some Member States' reluctance on aid to the sector, what framework and controls does the Commission envisage for measures to alleviate the economic impact on the sector?
What measures will the Commission take to draw on best practice from areas of the world in which eruptions are more common, especially by improving the definition of the level of danger of the sky zones and with regard to the use of innovative technologies?