Bloomberg News

EU Overshooting Kyoto Emission-Reduction Target by 8.8%

October 24, 2012

European Union governments will probably reduce emissions outside the bloc’s carbon market by 8.8 percent more than required under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, according to projections published today on an EU website.

The oversupply of reductions among the 15 older members of the bloc will amount to 1.03 billion metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in the five years through 2012 compared with a limit of 11.8 billion tons, according to the data. That includes 419 million tons of United Nations offset emission credits those nations are buying for compliance in the period, the data show.

Kyoto Protocol rules state that countries can use emission credits from the Clean Development Mechanism and Joint Implementation programs to help them meet targets. The EU began its carbon market in 2005, covering about half the economy, to help it meet its Kyoto goals and protect the climate. Nations with surpluses can sell credits to countries with shortages or to factories and power stations in the market.

Of the 15 older EU members, 10 are using offsets, according to the data. Of those, Italy is the only nation that will undershoot its reduction target, with a shortfall of 58.5 million tons in the five years, the data show. That’s after the nation buys about 10 million tons of offsets.

Luxembourg’s purchases of 14.5 million tons of credits will allow it to meet its target almost precisely, according to the projections.

Eight nations have bought 69.5 million tons more offsets than they will probably need in the five years, the data show. Spain, which is buying the most offsets at 194 million tons in the period, will overshoot its target by 7 million tons.

Netherlands Surplus

The nation with the biggest surplus of credits in the period will probably be the Netherlands, with 14.5 million tons, followed by Belgium with 14 million tons, according to the data.

Ireland, Portugal and Finland probably won’t need any of the 20.5 million tons of credits they are purchasing, the projections show.

December Certified Emission Reduction credits from the so- called CDM dropped as much as 22 percent today to 76 euro cents ($0.98) a ton on the ICE Futures Europe exchange in London and were at 78 cents at 1:21 p.m. Emission Reduction Units for the same month from the JI plunged 15 percent to 63 cents a ton, having slumped 91 percent in the past year.

To contact the reporter on this story: Mathew Carr in London at m.carr@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lars Paulsson at lpaulsson@bloomberg.net


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