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WW200902, Brussels in brief

Revised ETS will boost wind industry


Just before the Christmas break, EU Heads of State and the Parliament adopted the general principle of 100% auctioning of CO₂ allowances in the power sector as part of the revised Emissions Trading System (ETS). The decision was held up as extremely significant by the renewable energy industry: combined with the Renewable Energy Directive with its national 2020 targets, it should give a huge boost to investments in wind and other renewables.

Nonetheless, it was disappointing that the final agreement on CO₂ reductions was a great deal weaker than initially suggested. The goal is to cap total EU industrial emissions at 21% below 2005 levels by 2020 and make an average GHG reduction of 10% by 2020, divided between the Member States, for non-ETS sectors such as agriculture.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has stated that to enable the global average temperature increase to be limited to not more than 2°C above pre-industrial levels, emissions in industrialised countries must be reduced by 25% to 40% by 2020.

The EU’s decision allows for at least half of the reduction effort to be met by external credits in non-EU countries, meaning that the domestic reductions Europe is committed to are closer to 8% (and would increase to approximately 12% if an international agreement is reached next year in Copenhagen). This is too far from science to be credible.

The new ETS phase will begin in 2013 and run until 2020.


EWEA is now WindEurope

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