New Sandbag report claims ETS is not working

New Sandbag report claims ETS is not working
Published: 21 March 2016

Tagged Under: CO2 emissions Cembureau EU ETS 

Sandbag, a UK-based think tank, has released a report about the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) and argues that the ETS has actually led to an extra 15Mt of CO2 being released and that if the scheme had never existed emissions would be lower.

The report claims that it is “perverse” companies in the cement sector have collectively received more than GBP1bn worth of spare EU allowances (EUAs) for free between 2008-14.

While, emissions are down overall, this is said to be due to reduced cement demand and a shift towards cleaner fuels brought on by supplementary policies that support switching to waste and biomass, according to the report.

The use of alternative fuels in the cement sector is growing, Sandbag claims but this is in spite of the EU’s ‘flagship’ climate change tackling incentive not because of it. The report claims 2020 targets under the EU’s Renewables Directive alongside the Waste Framework Directive and Landfill Directives are more of an incentive to the sector than the ETS.

The report further states there is "no evidence" the ETS has directly contributed to decarbonisation in the cement sector.

In reply, a spokesman for Cembureau the European cement association criticised the report saying it contained factual errors, while admitting there was a need for innovation funding to stimulate breakthrough technologies.

He said alternative fuels and biomass currently account for 39 per cent of what is used to make cement.