Carbon Rises as EU Regulator Mulls Faster Glut-Fix Plan Approval

Nov. 22 (Bloomberg) -- European Union emission permits rose to the highest in a week after the bloc’s regulator said it will explore procedural ways to accelerate a market rescue plan to boost prices.

EU carbon allowances for December rose as much as 3.6 percent to 4.57 euros ($6.18) a metric ton, the highest since Nov. 15, on ICE Futures Europe in London. The European Commission said yesterday representatives of member states will discuss on Dec. 11 an adjustment to a draft measure to reduce a permit surplus that pushed prices to record lows.

The commission presented two options for a timetable on postponing the sale of 900 million carbon permits. The first is to withhold the allowances from the market in 2014 and 2015, according to a statement published on the EU website yesterday. The second would spread the supply curb over three years from 2014 through 2016.

The market fix was first presented last year and originally envisaged delaying sales of allowances at auctions between 2013 and 2015 and returning, or backloading, them to the market in 2019 and 2020.

Carbon rose 0.5 percent to close at 4.43 euros on ICE Futures. The contract fell 1.6 percent this week.

The EU Climate Change Committee, which includes representatives of member states, will probably aim for an agreement in principle on the timing of backloading next month and a formal decision later on, two people with the knowledge of the matter said earlier this week.

Once adopted by the committee, the regulation on the details of the market fix is subject to scrutiny by the European Parliament and national governments. EU rules give regulators the option to shorten the evaluation period, which typically lasts three months. Under EU law, the commission may also opt to seek the committee’s formal agreement in a written procedure, without the need to convene it.

To contact the reporter on this story: Ewa Krukowska in Warsaw at ekrukowska@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Lars Paulsson at lpaulsson@bloomberg.net