My statement on EPP stance on ETS and Backloading

(This letter I have sent as a comment on the article published in The Financial Times today.)

Sir,

As a Member of the European Parliament and the lead negotiator of the Emissions Trading Backloading proposal (Draftswoman for the EPP Group in the European Parliament), I refer to your analysis on the reasons of the European Parliament to reject the backloading of emission allowances (18 April 2013). I would like to add something very relevant. It is true that the EPP as centre-right group wants to protect European jobs, industry and economy. However, our stance on the Emissions Trading Scheme arises from a serious environmental concern, too. We have now withheld our support to a climate policy that punishes the cleanest employers in the world, i.e. the European industries. The current climate strategy of the EU is not efficient from an environmental point of view. As long as our climate policies are based on limiting the emissions of production alone and not those of consumption, we are simply outsourcing our emissions, and at the same time, outsourcing our jobs. Therefore, it should be considered alarming that during our expensive climate measures the total emissions of the EU have grown. A pollution shift is not a pollution cut. Therefore we need a profound review of the efficiency of European climate policies.

We are not against emissions trading as such. This market mechanism must be allowed to operate in peace, in order for its best sides to show. The prerequisite for fair and functioning carbon markets is that they are not disturbed by overlapping legislation. If the Commission wants to save emissions trading, it will have to trust it as a market mechanism. Emissions trading can do its job and will also guide us towards increasing the share of renewables without having to set separate renewable energy and energy efficiency targets. Abundant and dissimilar national subsidy measures have distorted the energy markets into a confusing and high-risk investment sector. As we hopefully climb from economic recession, we must avoid energy forms that are not self-sustaining.

Eija-Riitta Korhola MEP (Finland).

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