The Carbon Market – 29.06.2021

The EUA price on London based exchange ICE ECX opened on 29.06.2021 at 55.20 euro/tCO2, continuing its 5 weeks increase.

“Despite a week-long rally that has added more than 6% to EUA prices, carbon needs to rise even higher in order to restore natural gas’ advantage over coal in EU power generation”, updated news from Carbon Pulse 28.06 show.

EU ETS Free allocation up to €50 billion from 2008 to 2019

A new CE Delft study published on 7th June 2021 shows that the energy-intensive industry across Europe has profited up to €50 billion from 2008 to 2019 as a result of the free allocation of pollution permits under the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS).

The findings in the report from independent environmental consultancy CE Delft highlight the need to end this market failure as the EU carbon market rules are revised.

The sectors profiting most from pollution payouts are iron and steel, refineries, cement and petrochemicals sectors.

The report covers 18 EU countries and the United Kingdom. Most profits were generated in Germany, the UK, France, Italy and Spain.

The report identified three ways in which industry has secured a total of up to €50 billion windfall profits through the scheme from 2008 to 2019:

  • Companies passed through the “costs” of freely obtained emission allowances in the product price, paid for by the end-consumer. For example in the iron and steel sector (€12- 16 billion) and refineries (€7 – 12 billion);
  • Companies were awarded too many free emissions allowances that they could sell for a profit on the market. For example in the cement sector (€3.1 billion) and petrochemical sector (€600 million);
  • Companies bought cheaper international offsets (until 2020) to comply with their targets and were able to sell remaining free allowances for a profit on the market. For example in the iron and steel sector (€850 million), refineries (€630 million) and cement (€610 million). These amounts should have been used to modernise the technology, in order to reduce the CO2 emissions, but they were ofen redirected to pay debts of companies.

More information on CE Delft analysis: Additional profits of sectors and firms from the EU ETS 2008-2019.

Source: Carbon Market Watch, Brussels

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