Poland against inclusion of households in EU ETS
Poland is strongly against the inclusion of households in the European emission trading system (EU ETS) as the resulting rise in energy costs will affect the poorest, Poland's European affairs minister has told his EU counterparts at a sitting in Luxembourg.
Under the EU's long-term greenhouse reduction initiative, the EU ETS, European companies have to purchase carbon allowances on the EU carbon market or through EU ETS auctions to compensate for the excess greenhouse gases they emit.
Szymon Szynkowski vel Sęk said on Tuesday that over 30 million EU citizens belonged to the poverty segment, and that already many of them were unable to meet heating costs.
"They cannot even afford to heat their homes because of energy prices," the Polish minister said. "We cannot turn our backs on this. This cannot be the cost of changes proposed for the purpose of meeting climate goals."
Szynkowski vel Sęk also warned that high energy costs threatened to hinder investment and weaken economic competitiveness.
In this context, he pointed out that high energy costs already led to an over 60-percent foreign direct investment (FDI) slump in the EU in 2021, while at the same time the US saw an over 60-percent FDI rise.
Szynkowski vel Sęk stressed that the EU ETS system accounted for about 50 percent of energy costs in Poland, which was already being felt in the country's investment activity.
"Surveys of the commercial sector show that for 60 percent of firms energy costs constitute a long-term investment barrier," Szynkowski vel Sek said.
In Luxembourg, Poland also proposed asking the European Commission for additional information in the matter, and to oblige the forthcoming Spanish EU presidency to field a debate on the influence of the EU ETS scheme on spheres lying within the competencies of the sector Councils.