Turning point for ETS
The emissions-trading scheme needs reform, but first it needs an immediate patch
Appeared in print on 14.02.2013
The EU’s flagship climate-policy tool, the EU emissions-trading scheme (ETS), is at a turning point. With the price of carbon hovering way below €5 per tonne and a glut of permits on the market, something must be fixed or the EU’s main climate-policy instrument will turn to dust. As a first step towards correcting the problem, the European Commission has proposed a measure to withhold pollution permits temporarily, a process called ‘back-loading’.