Emissions permit auction brought forward

Energy companies' policy of selling power on a forward basis has prompted European ministers to change the system for auctioning emissions permits.

Ministers, yesterday (July 13), have agreed the terms covering the auction of 120 million allowances earlier than the original target of between 2013 and 2020.

The auctions, which should now start in the second half of 2012, were agreed in the European Commission’s proposal to auction allowances for phase three of of the Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) in 2012, the year before phase three is due to start.

A spokesman for the European Union’s Climate Change Committee (CCC) also said progress towards finalising two draft agreements on procurement procedures for the single auction monitor and the common auction platform has been made as well.

He said: “Early auctions are appropriate in view of the widespread commercial practice in the electricity sector of selling power on a forward basis and purchasing the required inputs (including carbon allowances) when they sell their output.”

The European Commission will now send the plans to the European Parliament for scrutiny, if there are no objections within three months, the Commission will adopt the amendment.

Luke Walsh

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