Deputy Energy Editor, EMEA
Barbara's Feed
Apr 10, 2013

Europe’s toxic air: clearer but not clean

LONDON/BRUSSELS, April 10 (Reuters) – Europeans no longer
see the kind of pollution that within living memory killed
thousands of Londoners in the Great Smog of 1952, but the air
they breathe still bears invisible threats scarcely less deadly,
and little more controlled.

While attention is given to curbing the carbon dioxide (CO2)
emissions blamed for global warming, substances more directly
harmful to human health, notably nitrogen oxides, are pumped out
of diesel engines and from European power stations burning coal
that is getting cheaper as Americans exploit new gas reserves.

Apr 9, 2013

European Union reaches deal on tough oil, gas anti-corruption law

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – European Union negotiators on Tuesday reached a deal on a law that will make oil, gas, mining and logging firms declare payments to governments, as part of efforts to end poverty in resource-rich nations by ensuring the wealth is shared out.

It echoes tough legislation passed in the United States last year, which has led to a court challenge brought by industry body the American Petroleum Institute.

Apr 9, 2013

Crunch vote nears that could kill EU carbon fix

BRUSSELS/LONDON, April 9 (Reuters) – Months of bitter
argument culminate next Tuesday in a make-or-break vote on an
attempt to prop up the European Union carbon prices, which
plunged to record lows earlier this year.

A proposal put forward by the European Commission last year
to remove temporarily some of the glut of carbon allowances that
has depressed the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) was meant to be
a quick and easy fix.

Mar 24, 2013

Car CO2 goals needed in EU to keep driving affordable

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – High oil prices will make driving a car less and less affordable unless the European Union vehicle industry has more stringent emissions limits than those the European Commission is battling to enforce, the body representing European consumers said.

Debate on these limits is intense in the European Parliament, which holds the next of a series of committee votes on Tuesday on proposals for 2020 vehicle CO2 standards. These would curb greenhouse gas emissions and also cut fuel use.

Mar 21, 2013

Climate needs less U.N. talking, more market action: EU draft

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Fewer United Nations climate summits and more incentives through carbon pricing could speed up international efforts to slow the pace of global warming, a draft European Commission paper seen by Reuters says.

U.N. climate talks have yet to recover from a disastrous Copenhagen summit in 2009 when talks ended in failure and subsequent annual meetings have been heavily criticized for dragging on for weeks yet achieving little.

Mar 21, 2013

British nuclear support plans flout EU rules-lawyers

BRUSSELS/LONDON, March 21 (Reuters) – Britain’s plans to
reward nuclear plant operators through fixed prices for
low-carbon energy are illegal under existing EU rules and
efforts to adapt them are likely to draw opposition from other
member states, EU and legal sources said.

Britain plans to reform its electricity market to fix a
minimum price for nuclear, wind and solar-generated power, which
is carbon free.

Mar 21, 2013

EU countries edging towards CO2 market fix-EU Presidency

BRUSSELS, March 21 (Reuters) – European Union member states
are making gradual progress towards agreement on an emergency
fix to support the carbon market, which has sunk to record lows,
a spokeswoman for the EU Presidency told reporters on Thursday.

“The position in the council (of member states) is making
progress towards majority support,” the spokeswoman said.

Mar 19, 2013

EU politicians back narrow loopholes in clean car law

BRUSSELS, March 19 (Reuters) – EU politicians backed a
compromise on Tuesday that would give carmakers limited leeway
in the race to cut CO2 emissions in line with targets while
rejecting German calls for more lenient rules.

The issue of how strictly to enforce European Union (EU)
efficiency rules to reduce fuel use, curb reliance on expensive
oil imports and lower greenhouse gas emissions has divided the
car industry.

Mar 19, 2013

EU set to agree oil, gas anti-corruption law

BRUSSELS, March 19 (Reuters) – Europe appears set to agree
rules forcing oil, gas and mining companies to declare payments
to governments, as part of efforts to end poverty in
resource-rich nations by ensuring the wealth is shared out.

EU officials say Tuesday’s round of negotiations on a legal
text could be the last, but it is not yet clear whether the
European Union’s rules will be as rigorous as U.S. legislation,
which has led to a challenge through the courts.

Mar 18, 2013

Fuel efficiency law to get EU on road to growth -study

BRUSSELS, March 18 (Reuters) – Proposed European legislation
on auto fuel efficiency, to be debated this week, could create
around 400,000 jobs and save the bloc tens of billions of euros
in annual fuel costs, according to a new study.

The fuel efficiency proposals, set for an initial vote in
the European Parliament on Tuesday, have split the industry.
Germany, home to luxury carmakers, has pressed for supercredits,
which the European Commission says would dilute its plans.