Brussels — Europe’s energy intensive industries should be protected from all direct and indirect costs arising from the revised Emissions Trading System (ETS), until a global agreement on climate change is implemented to provide level playing field conditions worldwide. That is what Eurometaux, the European non-ferrous metals association, stresses in preparation for the European Council’s 23-24 October discussion on the EU 2030 climate and energy framework.
In particular, Europe’s non-ferrous metals industry should be fully compensated for their ETS-related indirect costs, as passed on by electricity producers through higher power prices. Because metals are priced globally, these additional regulatory costs cannot be passed on to the final consumer, disadvantaging European metals companies against their global competitors. By providing long-term protection and predictability through a harmonsied EU-wide scheme linked to actual output, the EU can lower the risk of carbon and investment leakage.
Oliver Bell, President of Eurometaux, commented that “when defining its long-term climate and energy framework, the EU should consider the global competitiveness of its energy intensive industries as a priority”, and added that “non-ferrous metals are integral in numerous low-carbon technologies – from wind turbines and solar thermal systems, to energy storage and electric vehicles – and so promoting their continued production in Europe is a vital part of reducing our collective carbon footprint”.
He was complemented by Guy Thiran, Director General of Eurometaux, who warned that “Europe should not repeat its 2009 mistake by already committing to a binding CO2 reduction target. The European Council’s agreement should facilitate negotiations at the Paris UN conference in 2015 and set the basic direction for EU policy making. Targets should only be finalised after other global competitors agree to comparable burdens, and carbon and investment leakage measures must remain”.
Further details are provided in Eurometaux’s position paper on the 2030 climate and energy framework under eurometaux.eu.