European Union Emission Trading Scheme (EU ETS)

Coal Fights Back, and Wins in Europe

September 26, 2012 by Gary L. Hunt

Coal Power Plant via Shutterstock

A funny thing is happening on the way to the clean energy future.  While the US government wages a regulatory war on coal fired generation, in Europe, the land of the oh so politically correct the drive for greenhouse gas emissions reduction is meeting a new competitor—-reality!The EU emissions trading scheme had fallen on hard...[read more]

A carbon trading linkup between Australia and the EU

September 4, 2012 by David Hone

Last week the Australian Government and the European Commission announced that their respective emission trading systems would link up progressively over Phase III of the EU system, but for Australian entities from the start of full carbon allowance trading in 2015. This is a bold move by both parties and quite possibly one that will make others with nascent trading systems sit up and think about where they want to go.[read more]

Encouraging CCS in Europe

August 3, 2012 by David Hone

With an allowance surplus building up in the EU ETS and a resulting low carbon price, the urgent need for commercial deployment of CCS has diminished. Furthermore, with natural gas availability growing and renewable energy becoming a sizable factor in the EU electricity mix, it may be well into the 2020s before large scale deployment of CCS is necessary.[read more]

Can we restore the EU Emissions Trading Scheme's effectiveness?

July 26, 2012 by David Hone

A year ago as the EU ETS price showed clear signs of a second step change downwards, the EU Commission was resolute in its view that the mechanism was working. But a year is a very long time in business and politics and this week, with the backing and support of many business groups, the EU Commission began the political process necessary to attempt to address the problems.[read more]

Losing the lead? Europe’s flagging carbon market

June 25, 2012 by David Hone

Very recently I participated in the launch of a new report on the state of the EU Emissions Trading System. The report highlights in stark terms the problems facing the ETS today and calls for even more drastic measures than those currently under consideration by the European Commission.[read more]

The case for an auction reserve price

June 7, 2012 by David Hone


There has been considerable discussion over recent months as to what action needs to be taken both in the short and long term to ensure that the EU ETS continues to provide the necessary investment signal for major investments such as carbon capture and storage. The current price of €6.50 isn’t going to drive any change at all.[read more]

Can ICAO Meet the Challenges of Responding to Climate Change?

June 6, 2012 by Steve Seidel

Stephen Finn/Shutterstock

A Senate Transportation Committee hearing tomorrow will be the latest show of ire against the European Union’s effort to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from international aviation through its mandatory Emission Trading System (EU ETS). From Beijing to Delhi to Washington, governments claim the EU’s unilateral move violates...[read more]

Broadening the EU ETS debate

May 3, 2012 by David Hone

The ongoing debate in Europe about the current state of the Emissions Trading System (ETS) and the low carbon price outlook is gaining momentum and importantly gaining advocates for action, including senior figures from both business and academia on both sides of the Atlantic.[read more]

Making Sense of Misleading Talk about Cap-and-Trade in Europe and the USA

April 26, 2012 by Robert Stavins

Various advocates have labeled the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and the EU-ETS as near “the brink of failure” because of the recent trend of very low auction prices. Not true![read more]

The Dash (for Gas) Isn't Over Yet

March 21, 2012 by David Hone

Ed Davey, credit: UK DECC

Over the weekend the UK Secretary for Energy and Climate Change, Ed Davey, announced plans to secure a continuing role for natural gas in the UK power generation sector. So continues the rollout of a comprehensive policy framework designed to decarbonise the UK power sector, ensure security of supply / cost and provide sufficient certainty for the necessary investments to take place.[read more]

A set-aside for the EU ETS?

February 10, 2012 by David Hone

Interest in the EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) is high at the moment in the European Parliament. MEPs are being asked to support a key amendment to the proposed Energy Efficiency Directive which will see the removal (set aside) of a substantial number of allowances from the Phase III auctions. Such an action would bolster the EU carbon price. Not surprisingly, the upcoming ITRE Committee (Industry, Research and Energy) vote has polarised business groups.[read more]

Will the Durban Climate Negotiations Succeed?

December 9, 2011 by Robert Stavins

Two weeks of international climate negotiations began last week in Durban, South Africa.  These are the Seventeenth Conference of the Parties (COP-17) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).  The key challenge at this point is to maintain the process of building a sound foundation for meaningful,...[read more]