21 Jan 2009 04:01:03
Limiting energy industry emissions 'cheapest way to cut carbon'
Limiting emissions from all large power stations in the EU would be the least costly way to cut energy related emissions, according to a new report.
Implementing an Emissions Performance Standard (EPS) for energy could reduce emissions from the EU power sector by more than two thirds, according to a study carried out for various environmental group.
The Ecofys study shows that introducing EPS a limit on emissions per unit of energy - to supplement the existing Emissions Trading System would cut emissions by more than 800 million tonnes per year.
However, the report adds that the earlier the system is adopted the greater impact it will have and the more cost-effective it will be.
"The current EU Emissions Trading Scheme unfortunately does not prevent high polluting coal-fired power stations from being built," said Stephan Singer, director of WWF's global energy programme.
Energy companies currently receive free carbon emission credits instead of being forced to buy them all at auction.
Mr Singer added: "We need new emissions limits to ensure Europe invests only in renewable energy, energy efficiency, and CO2 capture and storage facilities for coal-fired power stations. Otherwise, Europe will fail to deliver its contribution to keeping global warming below two degrees Celsius."
Under the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target brought in 2008, energy suppliers are obliged to reduce the carbon emissions of homes by 154 million tonnes by 2011.http://www.ecofys.com/com/publications/reports_books.asp