EU countries slam new carbon market plans as energy prices soar

(EurActiv, 12 Oct 2021) The European Commission’s plan to introduce a separate carbon market for road transport and the building sector, alongside the EU’s existing Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), was widely criticised by EU environment ministers at their meeting last week.

The ministerial discussion on the proposal, part of a wider climate package of proposals tabled in July, came against a background of already rising energy prices.

While the European Commission has been clear that the EU carbon market only has a limited impact on the sudden price hike, it has put some central and eastern European countries on the backfoot and made them wary of creating a separate ETS for transport and heating fuels.

Environment ministers from Poland, Romania and Hungary all cited energy prices while expressing concerns about the proposal.

Countries in Eastern Europe tend to be more reliant on coal, meaning the carbon price would be higher for them than for western European countries, which have a cleaner energy mix, they argue.

“We are already observing a very worrying situation regarding rising energy prices and the Commission’s proposals may significantly worsen the situation,” warned the Polish climate and environment minister, Adam Guibourgé-Czetwertyński

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EurActiv, 12 Oct 2021: EU countries slam new carbon market plans as energy prices soar