Long road ahead for carbon market reform

(EurActiv, 25 Jul 2022) Amid an energy crisis, Russian gas cut-offs, and worsening climate change, EU negotiators face the mammoth task of overhauling Europe’s core emission reduction tool, the emissions trading scheme (ETS).

In June, EU countries and the European Parliament decided their respective positions on the carbon market reform, tabled by the European Commission in 2021. Now the three must thrash out the details in meetings called ‘trilogues’.

But it is far easier said than done.

“There is an agreement in Parliament. There’s an agreement in Council, but in some areas, these agreements do not overlap yet,” EU climate chief Frans Timmermans told journalists on 14 July.

“We need to make sure that, for instance, on the reform of the emissions trading system, we bring the two co-legislators closer together so that we can come up with a common conclusion – I think that is the most thorny issue,” he added.

There are “many points” where the Parliament and Council agree in principle, the lead ETS negotiator Peter Liese said after the first trilogue in July. For instance, both want to expand the carbon price to the maritime sector, but the details are yet to be worked out.

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EurActiv, 25 Jul 2022: Long road ahead for carbon market reform