EU emission plans suffer setback

The plans to reform the EU ETS carbon market have suffered a setback as MEPs have rejected the proposed changes and have returned it to the parliament committee for a redraft.

The ETS is a major plank in the EU’s attempts to curb climate change, and the proposals would have helped deliver the 55 per cent reductions in net greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, from 1990 levels.

However, many believe that the targets for the ETS were set too low and had been watered down; they will now be sent back for a redraft as a compromise is sought. The European parliament’s environment committee had originally proposed the industrial and energy sectors covered by the ETS should reduce emissions by 67 per cent by 2030, compared with 2005 levels, but this had dropped by several percentage points under pressure from some MEPs, especially considering the conflict in the Ukraine.

The rejection of the ETS will also mean that there will be a delay in the imposing the EU’s carbon border levy and creation of its social climate fund to shield poorer households from the cost of energy efficiency improvements.

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