Deputy Energy Editor, EMEA
Barbara's Feed
Nov 8, 2013

EU to start negotiating law on removing CO2 permits

BRUSSELS/LONDON (Reuters) – EU diplomats on Friday agreed to begin talks on a legal text to slash permit supply and prop up carbon prices in the bloc’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), marking a big step forward for the divisive proposal.

EU president Lithuania said member state officials would start negotiations with the European Parliament and the executive European Commission over the “backloading” plan, which seeks to delay the sale of 900 million carbon permits until later this decade.

Nov 6, 2013

Hitting EU green energy goals ‘would save billions, boost GDP’

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Hitting energy and environment targets for 2030 under discussion in the European Commission would save up to 35 billion euros ($47 billion) per year in health costs as air pollution declines, EU sources said.

It would also add an estimated 0.5 percent to gross domestic product, due mainly to lower oil and gas imports, they said.

Nov 5, 2013

EU Commission seeks to crack down on costly energy subsidies

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – EU energy prices will rise unless European governments stick to strict guidelines on when subsidies are justified, the European Commission said on Tuesday.

Following intense political debate and a storm of protest over energy prices, the Commission, the EU executive, is revising rules to guide the European Union’s 28 member states.

Nov 5, 2013

Power costs shrink as share of Europe’s rising energy bills

LONDON/BRUSSELS, Nov 5 (Reuters) – Europeans are paying the
steepest energy bills in four years and face ever higher
payments as governments pile on extra charges to help finance a
1 trillion euro ($1.4 trillion) modernisation of Europe’s energy
infrastructure.

Politicians from Britain to Germany, Italy to Romania, under
pressure from electorates squeezed by economic downturn, are
promising to cap energy prices or at least draw their sting.

Oct 29, 2013

EU presidency proposes new weakening of EU car rules

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Lithuania, holder of the EU presidency, has made a new proposal to weaken rules on how much carbon new cars can emit from 2020, in line with demands from Germany and its luxury manufacturers, EU diplomats said.

The proposal is stoking anger in Brussels, where Germany’s negotiating tactics are regarded as heavy-handed.

Oct 28, 2013

EU environment ministers call for action on climate

BRUSSELS/LONDON, Oct 28 (Reuters) – Thirteen European
environment ministers urged the European Union on Monday to
adopt ambitious energy and climate goals for 2030 or risk
falling behind the rest of the world.

In a 40-page document released in Brussels, they also called
on the 28-nation bloc to reform the EU’s Emissions Trading
System (ETS) and said environmental action need not clash with
efforts to limit energy prices.

Oct 24, 2013

Britain calls for EU to set tougher climate goal

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union needs to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent from 1990 levels by 2030 to avoid the worst effects of climate change, according to a British government paper, likely to fuel debate on whether deeper cuts are affordable.

Energy costs have shot up the political agenda across Europe, where power prices are around double those in the United States.

Oct 21, 2013

State support to keep lights on should be last resort – EU draft

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – Public money must only be used as a last resort to help struggling utility companies maintain stand-by power capacity, according to draft guidelines from the European Commission seen by Reuters.

Energy subsidies have shot up the political agenda in Europe, with Britain planning to use public finance to support new nuclear power and utilities complaining about the distorting impact of heavy subsidies for renewable energy.

Oct 17, 2013

EU lawmakers freeze plan to cap food for fuel

BRUSSELS, Oct 17 (Reuters) – EU lawmakers deferred on
Wednesday plans to curb the use of fuels made from food crops,
providing a reprieve for some in the bio-energy industry, but
raising the risk of higher grain prices in the future.

The decision brakes for now a policy U-turn from the
European Commission, the EU executive, which had said certain
kinds of biofuels had to be limited after earlier encouraging
them.

Oct 16, 2013

European Commission proposes airline carbon charge for EU airspace

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union on Wednesday revived a proposal to charge foreign airlines for emissions over European airspace, drawing the ire of airline groups who say it goes against spirit of a recent global aviation deal and could reignite trade tensions.

The proposal from the European Commission to cover the 2014-2020 period represents a retreat from an existing, though frozen, EU law that would require all planes using EU airports to pay for emissions for the full duration of their flights through an Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).