Thursday August 21, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
32o C
25o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
EU leaders may delay decision on 2030 targets for emissions

European Union leaders intend next month to agree on a timeline for developing energy and climate targets for 2030, delaying a final decision on the polices, according to two people with knowledge of the matter.

Most governments in the 28-nation bloc need more time to reconcile differences over a proposal by the EU’s regulatory arm calling for tighter emissions restrictions and an overhaul of renewable energy policies by 2030, said the people, who asked not to be identified because of policies against speaking publicly. EU presidents and prime ministers will debate the issue in Brussels for the first time on March 20 and may back setting a deadline for a decision later this year, they said.

The delay may be a setback for the global effort to fight climate change and for United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki- Moon, who is convening world leaders on Sept. 23 to set out ways to curb fossil fuel emissions. The EU has for decades been at the forefront of that process, and hesitation on its part may remove a spur for the U.S. and China to act.

“It’s very important that EU leaders set a time horizon in March for endorsement of the commission’s proposal -- that’s a signal that Europe must send globally,” said Tomas Wyns, a researcher at the Institute of European Studies at the Brussels Free University. “Hopefully that will be June. Otherwise it may only be October or at the end of the year.”

Before the EU summit in March, governments are scheduled to discuss the commission’s proposal at a gathering of competition ministers on Feb. 20, with environment ministers on March 3, and energy ministers the next day, according to Greece, which holds the bloc’s rotating presidency.

Heads of state will probably give political guidance on the matter through the European Council, said a presidency official, who asked not to be identified because of communication policy rules. The official declined to comment on the possible outcome of the March meeting.

EU carbon prices rose as much as 3 percent to a 13-month high of 6.88 euros on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London today, buoyed by the commission’s plan to start temporary curbs on supply as soon as next month. The 2030 package will be the next focal point for investors, since stricter climate targets would mean the supply of allowances will have to be cut more aggressively after 2020.

Debate about the timing of adopting the target highlights the divide between countries in western Europe such as Britain and France, which want a quick decision, and those in the east led by Poland, which are concerned that the new targets will boost energy prices.

The European Commission’s proposal calls for carbon dioxide emissions to be cut by 40 percent by 2030, double the goal for 2020. It would require an average annual investment of 38 billion euros ($52 billion), according to an EU policy paper on Jan. 22. The current pace of reductions would lead the EU to a 32 percent cut by 2030.

The commission’s ambition is to have a political decision on the direction of future policy in time for the Sept. 23 summit, where the UN is seeking pledges that can underpin a global treaty limiting emissions to be approved in 2015 in Paris.

The strategy recommended by the commission also includes an EU-wide target to boost the share of renewables in energy consumption to 27 percent by 2030. The decision to focus on a single greenhouse-gas reduction target binding on member states and discontinue renewables goals for individual nations has been supported by the U.K. and criticized by companies including Vestas Wind Systems A/S and Alstom SA, which make wind turbines and nuclear reactors.

EU nations have established the world’s largest carbon market and extended restrictions on emissions under the Kyoto Protocol until 2020 as Russia, Japan and Canada rejected further limits. The U.S. never endorsed the Kyoto treaty, which was negotiated in the Japanese city by that name in 1997.

It is “imperative” that EU leaders turn the commission’s proposal into a decision in March, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on Feb. 6, according to Agence France Presse. Without a political declaration next month, Europe may have nothing to offer at the UN climate summit in September, because elections to the European Parliament in May and the end of the current commission’s term in October will complicate the decision-making process, he said.

Poland, which relies on coal for more than 90 percent of its electricity production, said no decision on new energy and climate targets should be made before the commission’s term expires. Future policies in Europe must take into account the region’s competitiveness and the costs of energy, which in some parts of the region are double U.S. levels, according to the Polish government.

“We want a broad discussion in March, not a decision,” Economy Minister Janusz Piechocinski told reporters on Feb. 12 in Warsaw. “Our logic is the following: If Poland is forced, it will veto those European solutions. We are calling for a more ambitious goal: a global agreement.”

Environment ministers will not aim to adopt a unanimous political statement on the 2030 package at their gathering, leaving the matter to the EU leaders, according to the two people with knowledge of the matter.

Only after EU leaders back the strategy for the next decade will the commission be able to start drafting legislation on how to achieve the targets. The law proposed by the commission will then need to be adopted by member states and the European Parliament. That process typically takes a year or two.

[Bloomberg]

ekathimerini.com , Monday February 17, 2014 (15:10)  
KEELPNO blames stomach bug for sick tourists on Rhodes
KEPs to issue new and replacement driving licenses
EU funds reserved for waste facilities in northern Greece
Coalition mulls property tax changes
Primary surplus exceeds January-July target figure
Greece’s state budget registered a 2.27-billion-euro primary surplus for the seven-month period covering January to July, exceeding expectations by 1.47 billion euros, Finance Ministry data ...
Ryanair in Cyprus Airways talks
Ryanair Chief Executive Michael O’Leary was due to travel to Cyprus on Thursday for talks with the government about the possible takeover of loss-making carrier Cyprus Airways, he told journ...
Inside Business
SOCCER
Greek soccer officials in refereeing probe to face prosecutor on Sept 15
Eleven soccer officials were on Wednesday given until September 15 before they have to face prosecutor Aristidis Koreas, who is investigating allegations that the draws to decide which match...
ATHLETICS
Long jumper Tsatoumas takes Greece´s second silver at European Championships
Greece won its second medal at the European Athletics Championships in Zurich, Switzerland, on Sunday with Louis Tsatoumas coming second in the long jump. Briton Greg Rutherford won the even...
Inside Sports
COMMENTARY
Self-destructing political system
It finally seemed as if we had found some peace of mind. The vast majority of Greek MPs chose to abstain from festivities on August 15, also known as Assumption Day, thus sparing us from the...
EDITORIAL
Welcome movement
Many have spoken about the need to spur economic growth in this debt-wracked country, but very few officials seem to actually be doing anything meaningful to make this happen. Recent weeks h...
Inside Comment
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
 RECENT NEWS
1. KEELPNO blames stomach bug for sick tourists on Rhodes
2. Primary surplus exceeds January-July target figure
3. KEPs to issue new and replacement driving licenses
4. EU funds reserved for waste facilities in northern Greece
5. Coalition mulls property tax changes
6. Interest in Kranidi growing but water is running low
more news
Today
This Week
1. Merkel cites euro’s ‘construction flaws’ as economy sputters
2. Brussels warns Greece over plans to allow construction near Korinos beach
3. Second man held over double murder in Mani
4. Avramopoulos in US for talks with Hagel on possible Greek role in peace missions
5. Eurozone business growth slows in July, prices fall: PMI
6. Inspectors visit Rhodes to probe reports of mass food poisoning of hotel guests
Today
This Week
1. Carved sphinxes at Ancient Amphipolis tomb will not be removed
2. Treating Amphipolis with care
3. Canada’s fiscal adjustment has lessons for Greece
4. Greece to offer law on restructuring bad loans next month
5. Greece’s recession eases as country nears end to six-year slump
6. Ministry sys ‘no’ to debt collection agencies
   Find us ...
  ... on
Twitter
     ... on Facebook   
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright © 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.