EU carbon scheme ‘backloading’ trudges forward

Plans to boost the low price of carbon emissions in Europe took another step forward today as the European parliament voted in favour of a “back-loading” measure. This would delay […]

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By ELN reporter

Plans to boost the low price of carbon emissions in Europe took another step forward today as the European parliament voted in favour of a “back-loading” measure.

This would delay the release of 900 million new carbon credits in auctions to the third phase of the EU Emissions Trading System.

Around 11,000 factories and sites fall under the scheme which aims by 2020 to push emissions from industrial sectors down 21% than in 2005.

The vote was won by 385 votes to 284, meaning there was no change in overall outcome since MEPs voted in the issue in July.

Now once the European Council of Ministers approves the legislation on 16 and 17 December, the rule can be put in place.

Europe’s largest businesses have to buy allowances under the EU ETS if they emit too much carbon. One credit corresponds to one tonne of CO2 emissions. Companies may also sell on unused credits if they emit less than their carbon ‘ceiling’.

MEP Matthias Groote who is guiding the legislation through the European Parliament said the ETS “needs to deliver a clear price signal”.

International emissions trading group IETA said it is hopeful this will allow the changes in the auction calendar to take place “without further delays”.