Now, after three reforms that reduced the number of available permits, Europe’s Emissions Trading System (ETS) is back on track—even though production is lower because of the coronavirus pandemic. On Jan. 12 the cost of emitting a ton of CO₂ hit €35.42—a record—and consulting firm Energy Aspects predicts prices will reach €40 this year. “ETS has shown it’s a resilient system, and it’s now getting stronger,” says EU climate chief Frans Timmermans. “This is one of the best instruments we have to influence the behavior of industry and the necessary reduction in the use of carbon.”
Frans Timmermans, European Commission executive vice-president at the Politics of Life After Covid Event conference event with Lord Mandelson.