EU parliamentarians find compromise in climate protection laws

EU parliamentarians find compromise in climate protection laws

After the vote failed last week, Christian Democrats, Liberals and Social Democrats agreed to a compromise on important climate protection laws. Among other things, the agreement stipulates that the free allocation of certificates for CO2 emissions must gradually expire from 2027 and disappear completely from 2032, as the parliamentary groups announced on Wednesday.

On Wednesday of last week, a majority in Parliament surprisingly spoke out against another compromise, which necessitated further negotiations. “The compromise that was rejected last week would have predicted an end between 2028 and 2034,” stressed Tiemo W├Âlken, climate policy spokesperson for the Social Democratic Group in the EU Parliament.

“It’s Not the End of the Road”

His CDU colleague Peter Liese praised the compromise because it also foresees a slower start on CO2 tariffs. If that tariff doesn’t work as expected, there will also continue to be free pollution certificates, said Christian Ehler, a member of the CDU. Liese emphasized that he was confident there would be a large majority for the bill in next week’s decisive vote in the EU Parliament. Positive signals also came from the Greens. “The new agreement is the minimum standard of climate protection, which we support, but it is not the end of the road,” said Rep. Michael Bloss.

The EU’s emissions trading reform, the heart of European climate policy, failed seven days ago. A majority of MPs rejected a planned extension of the system to buildings and transport on Wednesday. The ETS expansion is also expected to be voted on again next week. Because of last week’s rejection, important votes on a CO2 tariff at the EU’s external borders were also postponed, as these projects are closely related. In emissions trading, parts of industry or electricity producers currently have to pay for the emission of climate-damaging gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2).

“It was worth pulling the emergency brake on the floor last week and as a result we were able to negotiate a better deal,” said SPD politician Delara Burkhardt. The various factions accused each other of being blamed for the failure of the agreement.