Legal expert says German coal levy plan contradicts ETS

A top legal expert says plans by the German government to introduce a climate levy on coal-fired power plants would go against European Union ETS legislation.

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer lawyer, Wolfgang Spieth told ICIS website, “In my view the current plan is not in line with [EU] ETS legislation.
The German plan requires older lignite coal fired power plants to buy more emission allowances per tonne of CO2 and is aimed at helping the country achieve the target of a 40 per cent reduction in carbon emissions by 2020 compared to 1990 levels.

The head of the major German union, Verdi, or Vereinte Dienstleistungsgewerkschaft, says the country will shed around 100,000 jobs if the government goes through with a climate levy to be imposed on coal-fired power stations.

The federal states of Saxony, North Rhine Westphalia and Brandenburg now plan to form a
working group with the Federal German economic affairs ministry.

A spokeswoman for the country’s federal economic ministry said that a letter was sent to employer associations, and the plan was not an unexpected move. More concrete discussions with companies are due to be held.

The plan will be put under public consultation in May or June, with a legislative proposal to be made before the end of the year. Saloni Sardana

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