Emission Trading Scheme
Public aid likely for around 15 sectors
By Sophie Mosca | Monday 21 May 2012
Around 15 sectors could receive public aid to compensate for higher electricity prices resulting from the introduction of the EU’s Emission Trading Scheme (ETS). The European Commission is expected to make this announcement on 22 May when presenting its guidelines for such aid, which will be applicable from January 2013, with the entry into force of the next phase of the ETS, and up until 2020, the expiry date of the current scheme.
On 8 May, when he presented his plan for the modernisation of state aid (see
Europolitics 4420), Competition Commissioner Joaquín Almunia stated that these guidelines were imminent and noted that “we are working on the list of sectors concerned by such aid”.
The aim is to permit member states, under Directive 2009/29/EC amending the EU greenhouse gas emission allowance trading scheme, to compensate for the indirect costs of emissions for companies in sectors exposed to a significant risk of carbon leakage.
The sectors expected to be concerned are those producing aluminium, lead, zinc and tin, iron and steel, copper, iron ore, fertiliser, organic and inorganic polycarbonate chemical products, polypropylene plastics, polyvinyl chloride and those producing synthetic fibres, leather or cotton fibre.
Aid will be limited by a maximum level of eligible costs per reference year. “There is discussion of a volume of aid of no more than 85% of eligible costs in 2013, 2014 and 2015, with a lower level the following years,” according to an informed source.