LSCC Takes to Capitol Hill in Response to ICAO’s Ban on Lithium Ion Batteries in Passenger Planes

by James Voyles, Executive Director, LSCC 

On Monday and Tuesday, the Logistics Supply Chain Coalition engaged several congressional offices regarding the FAA Reauthorization bill – H.R. 4441 – and ICAO’s decision to ban cargo shipments of lithium ion batteries from passenger planes. During these meetings:

The LSCC Accomplished:

  • 12 meetings with congressional offices.
  • 4 congressmen and women agreed to review and sign a letter from the LSCC to the FAA.
  • The letter will compare the FAA Reauthorization bill to ICAO’s ban and will ask the FAA how it plans to regulate the shipment of video equipment and associated batteries in the U.S.
  • 2 congressmen agreed to review and sponsor an amendment to the FAA bill that prevents FAA from banning lithium ion battery shipments where the battery is connected to or is in close proximity to its device. I.e. – video cameras.
  • 2 congressmen agreed to review and support that amendment.

The LSCC Learned:

  • While the text of the FAA Reauthorization bill has passed through the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, its scheduled debut on the House floor has been temporarily delayed.
  • The bill’s delay is due to several controversial issues within it, not the least of which is its treatment of the lithium ion battery issue.
  • ICAO’s decision is seen as a win for some congressmen and as a problematic impediment to commerce by others.
  • Shipping video equipment and their associated batteries as cargo on passenger planes is still legal, however, ICAO standards are inching towards an outright ban on this activity, several members of congress support an outright ban, and FAA officials have stated that they support an outright ban.

In the coming days, the LSCC is turning its sites to the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee and the FAA. This committee will review and either amend, reject, or approve any version of the FAA bill that the House passes. The LSCC has strong relationships with the leadership of this Senate committee and anticipates support from it. We will also meet with FAA officials to advocate for the continued shipment of video equipment as air cargo on passenger planes.

Given the current volatility of this issue and its potential impact on sports media, the time to act is now.

For more information, please contact LSCC Executive Director James Voyles at (202) 423-8391 or at jvoyles@hbwresources.com.

 

 

 

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