EU Tweaking Legislation to Reach Paris Agreement Target

The European Union is looking to pick up pace on its path to achieving a significant part of its Paris Agreement commitment with a provisional agreement to revise the post-2020 EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), reached by the European Parliament and Council on 9 November.

Upon reaching the deal, it was also agreed that the size of the Innovation Fund will be increased to 450 million allowances. The revenues from these will help kick-start innovative demonstration projects. This should help Europe lead in clean technologies, from wind energy generation to smart integration of renewables in our power systems, according to WindEurope.

Under the Paris Agreement, the EU has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40% by 2030. The EU Emission Trading System puts a cap on the carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted by more than 11,000 installations in the power sector and energy intensive industry through a market-based cap and trade system.

The agreement follows the EU Commission’s proposal to revise the EU ETS in July 2015.

Building on the EU Commission’s proposal, the main improvements agreed by the EU Parliament and Council include, i.a., several support mechanisms to help the industry and the power sectors meet the innovation and investment challenges of the transition to a low-carbon economy.

Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy Miguel Arias Cañete said: “Today’s landmark deal demonstrates that the European Union is turning its Paris commitment and ambition into concrete action. By putting in place the necessary legislation to strengthen the EU Emissions Trading System and deliver on our climate objectives, Europe is once again leading the way in the fight against climate change. This legislation will make the European carbon-emissions market fit for purpose.”