European Parliamentarians reject crucial draft climate law

Brussels, June 9 (IANS) Members of the European Parliament have sent back three draft laws forming part of the European Commission’s “Fit For 55” climate legislation package, referring them back to Parliament’s committee on environment (ENVI) for further consideration.

The draft legislations were on the reform of the Emissions Trading System (ETS), the European Union’s (EU) Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism (CBAM) and the Social Climate Fund, reports Xinhua news agency.

Parliament was meant to adopt its position on legislative proposals that aim to deliver on the EU’s climate action ambitions.

The measures are part of the “Fit for 55” package and seek to reduce the EU’s greenhouse gas emissions and energy dependence, while supporting businesses and people in the transition to a sustainable economy.

The EU is pursuing the most ambitious climate target: to cut emissions substantially by 2030 and bring them down to net zero by 2050.

However, the European Parliament rejected the report on the revision of the ETS by 340 votes to 265, with 34 abstentions.

Parliament’s rules of procedure provide for the possibility, upon request by a political group or members, to refer a file back to committee for further consideration.

MEPs voted in favour of postponing a decision on the two other reports so the ENVI committee will now discuss the matter in a forthcoming session in order to find a way forward on the files.

Once a compromise has been found in the committee, the plenary session will vote again.

The ETS obliges more than 10,000 power plants and factories to hold a permit for each tonne of CO2 they emit.

MEPs want to make the proposal more ambitious and also want municipal waste incineration to be included in the sector from 2026.

They also want a more ambitious carbon levy on imported goods to stop companies from moving outside the EU to avoid emissions standards, a practice known as carbon leakage.

The Social Climate Fund will address any social impacts that arise from a European Commission proposal to extend emissions trading to the building and road transport sectors.