segunda-feira, 16 de maio de 2011

EU CO2 Emissions Went Up 3 Percent In 2010

The start of April marked an important moment in the six-year history of the European Union's Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) with the release by the European Commission of carbon dioxide emissions data for 2010 showing that production of the greenhouse gas (GHG) went up by roughly 3% last year, compared with 2009 levels.

The 3.34% increase to an estimated 1.751 billion metric tons of the GHG as assessed by Platts from the partial EC-verified data release on April 1 suggests that the EU economy is bouncing back from the effects of the global recession. (Platts, like Aviation Daily, is owned by the McGraw-Hill Companies.)

Comparatively, the EU's verified CO2 emissions in 2009 fell by 11.6% from 2008 levels to 1.879 billion metric tons as the economic downturn took hold in Europe.

The EC is set to release a final aggregated verified 2010 CO2 emissions output figure on May 16.

The EC continued to update the emissions data in April as more power plants and industrial manufacturing facilities reported, and—by May 4—the EC-verified data year-on-year figure stood at an estimated 3.1%, representing an increase of roughly 1.858 billion metric tons in production of the GHG in the EU from 2009 levels, according to Platts assessments. Those figures are based on emissions data from facilities covered by the ETS that reported in both 2009 and in 2010, and verified emissions data from many plants in a few EU nations remain missing.

Environmental groups denounced the estimated 3% increase in emissions, claiming that the ETS should be requiring businesses covered by the scheme to cut their CO2 output ever more aggressively, even in a challenging economic period.

The EC took steps April 13 to indirectly address the concerns by proposing new minimum energy tax rates for every country, starting in 2013. The taxes would be based on CO2 output levels and energy content of consumed fossil fuels, rather than the volume of fossil fuels used.

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