MEPs reject a key carbon market reform text

The key text regarding the reform of Europe's carbon market was rejected by MEPs in plenary on Wednesday, June 8, 2008.

MEPs reject a key carbon market reform text

The key text regarding the reform of Europe's carbon market was rejected by MEPs in plenary on Wednesday, June 8, 2008. It was deemed too ambitious by the Greens, and the left. This will allow for a complete renegotiation in the parliamentary committee of this pillar in the EU climate plan.

This text, which allows for the expansion and trading of CO2 emission quotas but also for the elimination of free quotas to European industrialists in return for a carbon tax at EU's borders, was rejected by 340 votes against (264 for, 34 abstentions).

This Wednesday, the European Parliament will vote on eight texts from the roadmap that was proposed by the European Commission in July 2021 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030 compared to 1990.

"What a horrible day. It's a shame that the far right vote with Socialists and Greens was witnessed," said Peter Liese (EPP), the rapporteur on the rejected text in an electric atmosphere at the European Parliament in Strasbourg. The German MEP requested that the text be revised by the parliamentary committee in order to present a revised version for a second vote. This was approved by a large majority.

"Thunderbolt!" Because of the rules not being ambitious enough, the majority must revise its (...) copy. "The climate doesn't wait," said Karima Delli (Greens), MEP.

The EPP (pro-European Right, the main force in Parliament), and Renew (centrists & liberals) reached a compromise on the legislative proposal for the carbon market that was submitted to MEPs. It provided for a 63% reduction in carbon emissions by 2030 compared to 2005. This is better than the Commission's goal (-61%), but much lower than the vote in Environment Parliamentary Committee (67%).

The timetable was also revised to eliminate the European manufacturer-granted free emission quotas. Therefore, imports from the EU of polluting industries will be subject to taxation based on the European CO2 price.

The EPP pushed for an amendment to the text that was adopted Wednesday. It demanded that these free EU quotas be kept in place until 2034 in the name business competivity... This also delayed until 2034 full implementation of the carbon border tax.

The Environment Committee had previously voted that this "border adjustment", five years earlier than was proposed by the Commission, should be fully implemented in 2030 and that all free allowances cease to exist at that time.

These arbitrations were a strong point of contention for the Greens.

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