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EU leaders try to find CO2 cuts compromise

PR dla Zagranicy
Peter Gentle 23.10.2014 09:27
Poland and other central and eastern European states have threatened to veto proposed CO2 emission targets at an EU summit in Brussels on Thursday and Friday if the plan threatens their economies.

photo: Glow Images / East News

The leaders of European Union member states are meeting in Brussels to discuss the bloc's energy and climate policy for 2020-2030.

For Poland, the most important issue is the CO2 emission reduction goal, with the European Commission proposing a reduction of greenhouse gasses by 40 percent by 2030.

Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz has said the proposal in its current form is unacceptable to Poland, which has a largely coal-based energy sector.

Over the past weeks, Prime Minister Kopacz has held talks about issues to be discussed at the EU climate summit with other European leaders.

Speaking to journalists last week, she said that it was difficult to agree on a common stance.

“I will do everything to maintain the same quota, or level of emissions, for us, with the option of a free-of-charge transfer of emission rights to our energy companies,” she said.

“This issue actually concerns all Poles, because everyone uses electricity,” Kopacz also said.

“That is why, if our conditions are not satisfied, I will have to make a radical move, even though this will be my first summit,” she said referring to the veto option.

Similar statements have been made by Deputy PM and Economy Minister Janusz Piechociński, who suggested that if the target is set to high, Poland will veto it.

According to sources quoted by the EurActiv web site, the summit may however bring a compromise in the shape of a proposal that will allow countries like France and Germany to transfer 10 percent of their emission quota to Poland or other countries dependent on coal.

The beneficiary countries would then use the money from the sale of these quotas to invest in their own low-carbon energy mix, writes the web site. (kw/pg)

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