The EU Institutions have settled on a safeguard mechanism for European emissions trading should Britain leave the EU ETS in March 2019 without an agreement in hand.
The development is considered to be one of the more noteworthy achievements during the negotiations about 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.
If Brexit is completed in March 2019, UK operators wouldn’t have to give up allowances for their 2018 emissions, as allowances for certified emissions in the year 2018 must be renounced by April 30, 2019, after Brexit.
The measure ensures that aviation operators and other operators in the EU ETS would not use allowances that are issued from January 1, 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,” Liese added, clarifying how the updated clause in the pact would guard 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,” Liese disclosed.