BRUSSELS, April 30 (Reuters) – European Union talks next
week could clinch a deal to shake up the world’s biggest carbon
market after a change of position by the Czech Republic removed
a major obstacle to an early start for reforms.
The EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) is meant to be central
to efforts to cut carbon emissions, but a huge surplus of carbon
allowances caused by recession means they are not worth enough
to drive a switch from highly-polluting coal to greener fuels.
BRUSSELS/LONDON, April 29 (Reuters) – European Union member
states reached a provisional agreement that carbon market
reforms should begin on Jan. 1, 2019, at closed-door talks on
Wednesday, paving the way for a further round of negotiations
next month, diplomats said.
Member states have been arguing for weeks over when a reform
referred to as the Market Stability Reserve (MSR) should be
introduced to remove some of the surplus allowances that have
depressed permit prices on the EU Emissions Trading System
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union regulators opened an extensive investigation on Wednesday into the way 11 European governments subsidise utilities to ensure against blackouts, concerned that such support schemes may breach state aid rules.
Capacity mechanisms are used in some EU countries such as Britain and France to fund electricity generation that may not be cost-effective but is needed to guarantee supply during peak demand.
BRUSSELS, April 28 (Reuters) – European lawmakers on Tuesday
backed reforms meant to end decades of overfishing, but critics
said unscrupulous fishermen would be able to carry on throwing
away perfectly good fish because of a glaring loophole.
The European Union in 2013 agreed to reform the bloc’s
common fisheries policy in an attempt to rebuild fish stocks.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Commission proposed on
Wednesday a new law allowing individual EU countries to restrict
or prohibit imported genetically modified crops even after they
have been approved for use in food and feed by the bloc as a
The proposal risks upsetting trading partners, particularly
the United States, which wants Europe to open its doors fully to
U.S. GM crops as part of a planned EU-U.S. free trade deal.
BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union will launch a legal attack on Russian gas giant Gazprom (GAZP.MM: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) this week, ramping up tensions with Moscow, when antitrust agents will accuse it of overcharging buyers in eastern Europe, EU sources told Reuters on Monday.
Russia’s state-controlled biggest company, a vital supplier of energy to Europe despite frequent political disputes, could receive a full charge sheet from European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager on Wednesday, one source said.
RIGA, April 15 (Reuters) – Bulgaria is about to open a
licensing round for oil and gas in the Black Sea as it seeks to
turn itself into an energy hub and redraw the European pipeline
map to curb the country’s dependence on Russia, a senior
official said on Wednesday.
Bulgaria was among the countries locked into Russia’s
abandoned South Stream project that would have delivered gas
directly to the European Union, bypassing Ukraine, traditionally
a main transit route.
RIGA, April 14 (Reuters) – EU officials are holding talks
with a range of non-Russian suppliers and one day could buy gas
from Iran, Europe’s climate and energy chief said on Tuesday,
setting aside a Gazprom warning that Europe should not
block its gas strategy.
Russia’s Gazprom on Monday said blocking its Turkish Stream
pipeline to bypass Ukraine would be “a serious mistake”.
RIGA, April 14 (Reuters) – The Baltic states’ goal of
integrating with Europe’s power grid risks cutting off an
exclave of Russian territory, tightening nerves already
stretched by the Ukraine crisis.
The grid plan would take at least a decade, but if carried
out in full would leave Kaliningrad, a strategic chunk of
territory sandwiched between Poland and Lithuania — and home to
Russia’s Baltic Fleet — without a power network.
BRUSSELS, April 14 (Reuters) – EU politicians backed a deal
on Tuesday to limit the amount of crop-based biofuel that can be
used in the transport sector, drawing a line under years of
debate over a fuel source criticised for doing more harm than
Green campaigners and representatives of a new generation of
biofuels complained that the deal did not go far enough, but
said that it nonetheless marked recognition that the European
Union must look beyond using food for fuel.