EPP Group in favour of preparing EU for a hard Brexit also within environment domain
The EU Institutions have agreed to introduce a safeguard mechanism for European emissions trading (the EU Emissions Trading System - ETS) should Britain leave the EU ETS in March 2019 without an agreement. This is one of the most important achievements of the negotiations between the Institutions regarding the inclusion of air traffic in the EU ETS.
"If UK companies no longer have obligations under the EU ETS, then they cannot expect to continue to receive allowances under the ETS. This must be crystal clear", said Peter Liese MEP, EPP Group Spokesman on Environment, today in Strasbourg, following the Parliament’s vote in support of the result reached during negotiations between the Council, Commission and the Parliament.
If Brexit takes place in March 2019, UK operators would not have to surrender allowances for their 2018 emissions, as allowances for verified emissions in the year 2018 must be surrendered by 30 April 2019, just after Brexit. The safeguard measure makes sure that aviation operators and other operators in the EU ETS may not use allowances that are issued from 1 January 2018 onwards by the UK.
"The changes to the agreement will make sure that marked allowances, ‘created as from 1st January 2018, identified by a country code and made distinguishable according to the year of creation’, could no longer be surrendered in order to meet compliance obligations under the EU ETS. Otherwise, we would have a massive effect on the carbon market", said Liese, explaining how the added clause in the agreement will safeguard the European industry and protect the European climate.
"I am optimistic that an agreement will be reached on time and that the compliance deadline for 2018 emissions will be advanced to before the date of the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the EU. Nevertheless, I think that it is a good thing that we prepare for a hard Brexit. In this case, neither damage to the environment, nor harm to European companies should occur", concluded Liese.