Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Cap And Trade

Poland’s Veto Threat To Higher EU Emission Reduction Targets Could Derail Global Climate Treaty

Poland Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz

Poland Prime Minister Ewa Kopacz

Poland is at it again — threatening to derail any potential progress that the European Union can make before the world sits to agree on an international climate change agreement next year.

Poland’s new prime minister has stated that she could veto a proposal by the EU to increase the emissions reduction target. Several EU countries are calling for an enhancement of the emissions reduction target as the union is already on course to meet its 2020 targets and companies covered under its emissions trading scheme are sitting on billions of tonnes worth of emission allowances owing to the economic slowdown.

The EU has set a target to cut emissions by 21% by 2020 from 2005, the year the emissions trading scheme was launched. Several countries and stakeholders in the carbon markets have urged the EU to significantly enhance its emissions reduction target to provide impetus to the global carbon market as well as the slow-moving climate change negotiations.

As China gears up to launch its national emissions trading scheme, EU remains the world’s largest carbon market. Following the economic crisis and fall in industrial activity the EU carbon market crashed crushing the UN’s Clean Development Mechanism in the process and stopping revenue streams of thousands of clean energy projects across the developing world.

Poland has a history of opposing low-carbon policies implemented or considered by the EU. Its opposition probably stems from the possibility of it losing self-sufficiency in the energy sector. Poland has vast reserves of coal which provide for about 90% of its energy requirements. While the country is looking to invest in renewable energy infrastructure, a large-scale transition to a low-carbon economy would take decades.

Interestingly a study published previously when such conflict came up actually found that Poland would benefit economically from a stronger target. But the large coal companies that pull the political strings surely wouldn’t.

The EU adopting a leading role by adopting a more ambitious emissions reduction target is critical for the successful negotiation of the new international climate treaty. No other developed country or region can be expected to make any significant contribution in steering the talks in the right direction. China, among the developing countries, is leading the world in efforts to reduce emissions and will have the world’s largest carbon market before the decade draws to an end.

So, while the US argues about the science of climate change; Australia continues to roll back low-carbon initiatives one after the other; and Japan, Canada, New Zealand, and Russia adopt emission reduction targets that are shamelessly small to even mention, the EU has to fight a battle within its own borders.

Image Credit: Jarosław Roland Kruk (CC-BY-SA 3.0)

I don't like paywalls. You don't like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Here at CleanTechnica, we implemented a limited paywall for a while, but it always felt wrong — and it was always tough to decide what we should put behind there. In theory, your most exclusive and best content goes behind a paywall. But then fewer people read it! We just don't like paywalls, and so we've decided to ditch ours. Unfortunately, the media business is still a tough, cut-throat business with tiny margins. It's a never-ending Olympic challenge to stay above water or even perhaps — gasp — grow. So ...
If you like what we do and want to support us, please chip in a bit monthly via PayPal or Patreon to help our team do what we do! Thank you!
Sign up for daily news updates from CleanTechnica on email. Or follow us on Google News!

Have a tip for CleanTechnica, want to advertise, or want to suggest a guest for our CleanTech Talk podcast? Contact us here.

Written By

Mridul currently works as Head-News & Data at Climate Connect Limited, a market research and analytics firm in the renewable energy and carbon markets domain. He earned his Master’s in Technology degree from The Energy & Resources Institute in Renewable Energy Engineering and Management. He also has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Engineering. Mridul has a keen interest in renewable energy sector in India and emerging carbon markets like China and Australia.


You May Also Like


After stumbling on biofuel, algae finds its footing and steps up to help the concrete industry cut its carbon footprint, too.

Climate Change

Steel will not remotely be a constraint for global transformation of energy over the coming decades. We make vastly more of it per year...

Clean Power

With more scrapping and more direct reduction using lower carbon technologies such as Midrex' DRI and HYBRIT every decade, and the likely creation of those...

Clean Transport

A new type of autonomous electric train is on track to electrify the US freight rail network and push diesel trucks off the highways,...

Copyright © 2023 CleanTechnica. The content produced by this site is for entertainment purposes only. Opinions and comments published on this site may not be sanctioned by and do not necessarily represent the views of CleanTechnica, its owners, sponsors, affiliates, or subsidiaries.