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  European emissions trading: Pollution rights to become more expensive – Politics | Bit Updates
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European emissions trading: Pollution rights to become more expensive – Politics

Friday, February 9th, 2018 | bitcoin updates


For more than two years, Europe has discussed how the European Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) can be designed for the next trading period between 2021 and 2030. The system was supposed to get companies and operators of fossil power plants to significantly reduce their CO2 emissions. So far, however, the desired effect has remained largely lacking because too many allowances in the system led to low CO2 prices. As a result, there is little incentive for companies to invest in climate-friendly technology. Since 2005, companies and power plants covered by the trading system have been required to buy certificates to allow them to blow climate-damaging CO2 into the atmosphere. One certificate equals one ton of CO2. Currently, the price of a certificate is eight euros and therefore too low. The reform is set to rise three to four times. The changes were decided several months ago by the chief negotiators of the European Council, the European Parliament and the Commission. The European Parliament also voted this week. Two billion allowances will be released from the market starting in 2023. The trade system will now be comprehensively reformed. From 2021, power plants and factories will have to reduce their emissions of climate-damaging carbon dioxide by 2.2 percent per year – so far only 1.74 percent were planned. In addition, the number of allowances that are withdrawn each year from oversupply is doubled – to 24 percent. These are parked in a so-called market stability reserve. In addition, the complete deletion of certificates was decided in 2023. More than two billion certificates could thus additionally disappear from the market, experts estimate. This should mitigate the "water bed effect": so far, CO2 savings in one EU country often lead to increases elsewhere, because there were too many cheap certificates. The EU ETS now finally fulfill its purpose, investments in climate-friendly technologies bring about, says Peter Liese, CDU MEP and environmental spokesman for the European Christian Democrats. Green MEP Claude Turmes, on the other hand, says: "Even after this reform, emissions trading will not be the effective climate protection instrument that will achieve the Paris climate targets." But successes have been achieved elsewhere, such as the modernization fund. New criteria for poorer EU member states

The Fund distributed free emission allowances to energy producers in poorer Member States. These should replace old power plants with new ones, according to the plan. These include Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland and Romania. As a result, however, old coal-fired power stations ran longer because the certificates were not linked to binding specifications for modernization. This has been criticizing non-governmental organizations and energy experts for years. In the future, the free certificates can no longer be used to extend the life of dirty power plants. In addition, the EU intends to award them in an application process. In the future, moreover, 70 percent of the funds from the modernization fund must be used to promote clean energy sources and storage technologies and 30 percent for natural gas projects. Exceptions apply to Romania and Bulgaria: they are allowed to finance district heating projects that also include coal. The reform strengthens an important cornerstone of EU climate protection, said Jo Leinen, member of the Environment Committee in the European Parliament. However, the SPD politician has doubts that emissions trading alone will be sufficient for Europe to achieve its Paris climate goals. "If the emissions trading does not get on its feet in the next few years, further measures are inevitable." The debate over a minimum price for carbon is now going to get louder.Even utilities want an additional carbon price for climate protection and business representatives, including energy suppliers Eon or EnBW want to add carbon prices to emissions trading to limit CO2 emissions in the EU Member States and achieve the objectives of the Treaty of Paris, and the Union and the SPD have refrained from introducing such an instrument It is planned to push ahead with the introduction of a carbon price among the G20 countries. "But what sounds like a big hit, according to energy and climate experts, is more an attempt to delay the introduction of the instrument." Going the G20 is a much more laborious starting point than the will, the CO2-P travel together with France in a timely manner, "says Felix Matthes of the Öko-Institut.

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