EU Says Surplus CO2 Permits Cancellation May Be Long-Term Option

A permanent cancellation of surplus carbon permits in the European Union’s emissions market may be a long-term option for to improve the program, said Jos Delbeke, director general for climate at the European Commission.

The commission, the EU regulatory arm, will discuss this issue and other potential “structural” options to strengthen the bloc’s emissions trading system in a report to be published “in the coming weeks,” Delbeke said during the General Assembly of the Zero Emissions Platform in Brussels today.

The commission’s proposal in July to delay sales of some carbon permits as of 2013 is an “exceptional short-term measure that goes hand-in-hand with the debate about structural measures,” Delbeke said. A deeper overhaul of the system would need more time because such decisions involve national governments and the European Parliament, he said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ewa Krukowska in Brussels at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Rob Verdonck at

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