The temporary suspension of the auctioning of emissions quotas (freezing of quotas) in order to stabilise the carbon market is now nearly a reality. Following the formal adoption of the amendment to the directive establishing the EU's Emissions Trading System (ETS - Directivea2003/87/EC), on 16 December 2013 (see Europolitics 4774) the Climate Change Committee - which includes member state experts and the European Commission - approved, on 8 January, a Commission regulation establishing practical measures for this operation.

The regulation (an implementing act) must still be approved by the Council and European Parliament, which now have three months to oppose the procedure (known as the 'right of scrutiny'). "The decision to postpone the auctioning calendar is now a reality," said Climate Action Commissioner Connie Hedegaard, recalling nonetheless that this is only a short-term solution. "Certainly, this will help to stabilise the carbon market in the years to...

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