The role of speculation during the recent increase in EU emissions allowance prices (2023)

Prepared by Miguel Ampudia, Giovanna Bua, Daniel Kapp and Dilyara Salakhova

Published as part of theECB Economic Bulletin, Issue 3/2022.

The price of emissions allowances (EUA) traded on the EU’s Emissions Trading System (ETS) has increased from below €10 per metric tonne of carbon to above €90 since the beginning of 2018 (Chart A). In general, as discussed below, EUA prices are mainly driven by demand-side factors (such as economic activity and fuel switching) and public policies. Market commentary suggests that major factors behind the increase since early 2018 are likely to have been the introduction of increasingly stringent climate change policies in the EU and globally, alongside various changes in ETS market design. In April 2018 the introduction of the revised EU ETS Directive[1] – which sets the framework for the fourth trading period, from 2021 to 2030 – appears to have enhanced the credibility of the scheme.[2] The announcement by the European Commission of the European Green Deal in late 2019 is also reported to have supported EUA prices, alongside the endorsement by the European Council of a new EU-wide emission reduction target in late 2020.

The largest share of the EUA price increase has occurred since early 2021 and likely reflects a multitude of factors. Research by the European Commission and commentaries by participants in the EUA market suggest that several factors have led to the acceleration of the price increase since early 2021. First, particularly cold weather in Europe at the beginning of 2021 caused energy demand to rise. In the short term, given production rigidities, higher demand for energy translates directly into an increase in demand for EUA certificates and therefore into higher EUA prices. Second, the announcement of the European Commission’s “Fit for 55” package of legislative proposals reinforced the role of the EU ETS as the EU’s major decarbonisation tool. Third, phase 4 of the ETS, which started in 2021, also entails a shrinking supply of EUAs over time and updated parameters for the Market Stability Reserve, which will further limit the amount of EUAs available in the market.[3] Fourth, the main factor behind the most recent price increases is higher gas prices, which encourage electricity producers to switch from gas to more CO2-intensive coal-fired power generation, thereby increasing the demand for carbon permits.

Chart A

ETS spot and futures prices

(EUR per metric tonne of carbon)

The role of speculation during the recent increase in EU emissions allowance prices (1)

In light of the particularly strong increase in EUA prices over the last two years, the potential role played by speculation has also come into focus. Even if EUA prices are expected to increase to meet increasingly stringent decarbonisation goals, sharp price increases over a short period could imply that firms are faced with quickly rising costs without having sufficient time to adjust production capabilities. In this respect, European Commission research suggests that the price rally may have been supported by increased interest from non-compliance entities, such as investment funds, in the ETS.[4] Market intelligence also suggests that exchange-traded funds and other investment funds may be playing an increasingly important role in the ETS market.

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However, the bulk of empirical studies of the drivers of carbon prices have so far focused mainly on structural determinants of price fluctuations and given limited attention to changes in speculation. The “switching” effect, which arises from the substitution between different sources of fuel with different carbon emission levels, has been identified as one of the most important drivers of carbon prices in theory. However, while the substitution in Europe takes place mainly between gas and coal, there is only mixed empirical evidence as regards the effect of fuel switching on carbon prices following changes in coal prices.[5] The literature finds fluctuations in economic activity,[6] alongside changes in end-product prices, mainly in the form of the price of electricity,[7] to be other important price determinants. Finally, weather conditions play a large role since these can influence the demand for emission certificates both through their impact on energy consumption and through their effect on renewable energy production, with the former effect appearing more important.[8] Some studies have also investigated the impact of announcements concerning changes in market design (i.e. the EUA supply schedule), coming to the conclusion that these have indeed had important effects on EUA prices.[9] Finally, only a few studies look at the evolution of the type of trading activity in carbon markets, finding a limited impact of speculation.[10]

At present, tangible evidence of a strong increase in speculative activity related to potential changes in market structure appears scarce. The European Securities and Markets Authority (ESMA), in its preliminary report on the structure of the carbon market, documented that while the number of counterparties holding EUA futures positions has tended to increase since 2018, this increase has been relatively homogeneous across types of counterparty. [11] In general, market participants can trade both spot EUA and derivatives contracts. Unlike in other derivatives markets, carbon derivatives are almost entirely traded on regulated markets and cleared in central counterparties. Futures are the most common EUA derivatives in the secondary market, with the December future being by far the most liquid. [12] Data collected under the European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) in a regulatory trade repository, where the exchange of financial derivative contracts such as futures is registered, confirm that there has been little change in the market structure over the past five years (Chart B, panel a). This is despite the fact that the market has more than doubled in the last two years, with the notional value of open positions in EUA derivatives reaching €415 billion in early December 2021.[13] If speculative activity had increased materially, one would expect to see an increase in the share of outstanding open positions between financial institutions (blue bars), which is not the case.[14] This contrasts with information from market intelligence that suggests a recent increase in activity by investment funds in the ETS market, which may indicate a rise in speculation. However, investment funds overall continue to represent a very minor share of outstanding open positions, and this has only increased marginally – from 0.6% in 2020 to 0.7% in late 2021 (Chart B, right panel). These findings are in line with the latest ESMA report on the EU carbon market.[15]

Chart B

EU ETS market structure

a) Development of open positions by entity


The role of speculation during the recent increase in EU emissions allowance prices (2)

b) Shares of open positions by financial subsector


(Video) The role of carbon pricing in achieving the EU’s 2030 target and reducing emissions globally

The role of speculation during the recent increase in EU emissions allowance prices (3)

A speculation index confirms that, while speculation appears to have increased slightly since early 2019, it seems to remain limited and well below the levels seen during earlier phases of the ETS. A proxy for the level of speculation in the ETS market can be constructed by comparing the overall volume traded with the volume of open positions for all entities.[16] The intuition behind such a proxy is that speculative behaviour leads to an increase in the volume traded but, since speculative positions tend to be closed quickly, not to an equivalent increase in the volume of open positions. A speculation index, calculated as weekly trading volume over the open interest at the end of any given week, currently suggests that speculation may have gradually been increasing over the last two years. [17] However, it remains largely below the levels seen at the creation of the ETS market and during phase 2 (Chart C).[18]

  1. Directive (EU) 2018/410 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 March 2018 amending Directive 2003/87/EC to enhance cost-effective emission reductions and low-carbon investments, and Decision (EU) 2015/1814 (OJ L 76, 19.3.2018, p. 3).

  2. The Directive amended the Market Stability Reserve and increased the rate of reduction of the annual emissions cap from 1.74% to 2.2% for phase 4 of the ETS.

  3. See the box entitled “EU emissions allowance prices in the context of the ECB’s climate change action plan”, Economic Bulletin, Issue 6, 2021 for more information on the characteristics of the EU ETS.

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  4. Compliance entities are companies and aircraft operators obliged to participate in the EU ETS. Non-compliance entities, such as credit institutions, investment firms, funds and commodity trading firms (which have no compliance requirements), can also participate.

  5. See e.g. Alberola, E., Chevallier, J. and Chèze, B., “Price drivers and structural breaks in European carbon prices 2005-2007”, Energy Policy, Vol. 36, No 2, February 2008, and Hintermann, B., “Allowance price drivers in the first phase of the EU ETS”, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Vol. 59, No 1, 2010, pp. 43-56, for an upward effect of fuel switching on carbon prices. By contrast, other studies, such as Rickels, W., Görlich, D. and Oberst, G., “Explaining European emission allowance price dynamics: Evidence from Phase II”, Kiel Working Papers, No 1650, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW Kiel), 2014, find little support for an effect from fuel switching following changes in the price of coal.

  6. Most studies use stock market indices as a proxy for economic activity (see e.g. Rickels, W. et al., op. cit., and Koch, N., Fuss, S., Grosjean, G. and Edenhofer, O., “Causes of the EU ETS price drop: Recession, CDM, renewable policies or a bit of everything? – New evidence”, Energy Policy, Vol. 73, October 2014, pp. 676-685).

  7. See e.g. Alberola, E. et al., op. cit., and Aatola, P. Ollikainen, M. and Toppinen, A., “Price determination in the EU ETS market: Theory and econometric analysis with market fundamentals”, Energy Economics, Vol. 36, March, 2013, pp. 380-395. Some studies argue that the electricity price should not be included owing to its potential two-way relationship with EUA price (see e.g. Fell, H.,”EU-ETS and Nordic Electricity: A CVAR Analysis”, The Energy Journal, Vol. 31, No 2, 2010, pp. 1-26, and Lovcha, Y., Perez-Laborda, A. and Sikora, I., “The determinants of CO2 prices in the EU emission trading system”, Applied Energy, Vol. 305, Issue C, No S0306261921012162, 2022).

  8. Studies that have focused on energy use agree on the role of additional heating and cooling in the two first phases of the ETS (e.g. Bredin, D. and Muckley, C., “An emerging equilibrium in the EU emissions trading scheme”, Energy Economics, Vol. 33, No 2, 2011, pp. 353-362, and Lutz, B., Pigorsch, U. and Rotfuβ, W., “Nonlinearity in cap-and-trade systems: The EUA price and its fundamentals”, Energy Economics, Vol. 40, Issue C, 2013, pp. 222-232). On the other hand, the role of weather variations in the provision of renewable energies is less clear. Overall, results suggest a marginal effect on EUA prices, also depending on the renewable power and countries considered (e.g. Koch, N. et al., op. cit.).

  9. See Conrad, C., Rittler, D. and Rotfuβ, W., “Modeling and explaining the dynamics of European Union Allowance prices at high-frequency”, Energy Economics, Vol. 34, No 1, 2012, pp. 316-326; Koch, N. et al., op. cit.; and Koch, N., Grosjean, G., Fuss, S. and Edenhofer, O., “Politics matters: Regulatory events as catalysts for price formation under cap-and-trade”, Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Vol. 78, Issue C, 2016, pp. 121-139.

  10. Lucia, J.J., Mansanet-Bataller and Pardo, A., “Speculative and hedging activities in the European carbon market”, Energy Policy, Vol. 82, Issue C, 2015, pp. 342-351 explores the dynamics of speculative and hedging activities across the first three phases of the ETS and finds that speculation is likely to have played a role to some extent during phase 2, with the highest degree of speculative activity taking place at the time a new contract is listed. Moreover, speculative activity rises during the first quarter of each year. Overall, however, the role of speculation in the price formation process is not found to be very large. Lovcha, Y. et al., op. cit., adds to this by documenting that up to 90% of the fluctuations in the carbon price have historically been explained by variations in fundamental variables.

  11. Preliminary report – Emission Allowances and derivatives thereof”, European Securities and Markets Authority, 15 November 2021.

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  12. See e.g. Lucia, J.J. et al., op. cit., and Quemin, S. and Pahle, M., “Financials Threaten to Undermine the Functioning of Emissions Markets”, available at SSRN, revised 24 March 2022.

  13. The sample of EMIR data used here includes transactions with at least one counterparty located in the euro area or the underlying securities issued by a euro area entity. The data (reported by both trade counterparties) are paired and de-duplicated, then outliers are removed. The final data can still be subject to data quality limitations (e.g.missing values, some transactions remain unpaired, possible under-reporting). The notional amount reported is as of 7 December 2021 to avoid end-of-year effects.

  14. Such an increase sometimes contrasts with an increase in open positions between financial and non-financial institutions, where non-financial entities buy EUA futures to hedge their carbon price exposure, with financial counterparties acting as intermediaries that facilitate trading and provide liquidity to the market. See “Preliminary report – Emission Allowances and derivatives thereof”, European Securities and Markets Authority, 15 November 2021.

  15. Final Report – Emission allowances and associated derivatives”, European Securities and Markets Authority, 28 March 2022.

  16. Note that the section above considered an increase in the proportion of open positions between financial institutions as a potential sign of speculative behaviour. However, the speculation index considered in this section assumes that the open positions of any market participant are non-speculative. While neither of these two assumptions are always fulfilled, they should largely hold. The two measures should therefore be seen as complementary.

  17. The index follows Lucia, J.J., op. cit. This type of index was first proposed by Garcia, P., Leuthold, R.M. and Zapata, H., “Lead-lag relationships between trading volume and price variability: New evidence”, Journal of Futures Markets, Vol. 6, No 1, 1986, pp. 1-10.

  18. The remarkably high speculative activity in early phase 1 (relative to phases 2 and 3) is probably explained by the novelty of the carbon market, which was launched in early 2005, and thus linked to an initial learning process (see Lucia, J.J. et al., op. cit.). Also, the lower level of hedging in phase 2 than in phase 3 is in line with the fact that during phase 3 allowances were distributed mainly through auctions. This implies that most installations that did not have sufficient allowances to cover their emissions during phase 3 needed to hedge their future positions.


Why has ETS price increased? ›

Fourth, the main factor behind the most recent price increases is higher gas prices, which encourage electricity producers to switch from gas to more CO2-intensive coal-fired power generation, thereby increasing the demand for carbon permits.

Why is the EU ETS price so high? ›

Carbon prices in the EU Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS) have risen from around 5 euro per ton of CO2 in 2017 to above 90 euro in 2021. One probable explanation is the cancellation mechanism implemented along with the Market Stability Reserve (MSR) of the EU ETS in 2018.

Why have carbon prices increased? ›

Therefore, emission prices go up when demand is high, and as the emissions cap decreases every year to push towards climate targets, companies are either facing an increasing cost to comply - or invest in implementing actions to reduce their GHG emissions and to cut their need for allowances.

What is an emission allowance? ›

Allowance: a limited authorization to emit a specific quantity (e.g., one ton) of a pollutant from an affected source.

What drives the EUA price? ›

EUA prices have traditionally been driven by power market dynamics, for example the switching off of coal-fired plants in favor of gas, Schieldrop said. As the gas price rose, more power generators switched from lower-carbon gas to carbon-heavy coal and needed to use more EUAs for compliance purposes.

Is the EU ETS cost effective? ›

The EU ETS has proven to be an effective tool in driving emissions reductions cost-effectively. Installations covered by the ETS reduced emissions by about 35% between 2005 and 2019.

What is the EU doing about energy prices? ›

In October 2022, EU countries adopted an emergency regulation to address high energy prices and help citizens and businesses that are most affected by the energy crisis. The rules were adopted in record time. The regulation includes three emergency measures: reducing electricity use.

Is the EU emissions trading system successful? ›

In the eyes of the European Commission, the ETS has been an unmistakable success: emissions in the sectors covered have decreased by 42.8% since the 2005 launch.

Are prices rising in the EU? ›

Every corner of the continent is facing rising prices, with Europe's expected economic bounceback from the coronavirus pandemic being hampered by a number of factors.

How does carbon pricing help reduce emissions? ›

Share of GHG emissions with a positive carbon price, in %

Carbon pricing provides incentives for households and businesses to reduce carbon-intensive energy use and shift to cleaner fuels, while also mobilising government revenue.

What influences the price of carbon credits? ›

In ETS systems, carbon credits can be bought, sold, and traded just like stocks. While there is some government control exerted over carbon prices in this type of system, price changes can also be strongly influenced by the market itself and changes in supply and demand.

Does carbon pricing actually reduce emissions? ›

For governments, carbon pricing is one of the instruments of the climate policy package needed to reduce emissions. In most cases, it is also a source of revenue, which is particularly important in an economic environment of budgetary constraints.

How are EU ETS allowances allocated? ›

Auctioning is the default method for allocating emission allowances to companies participating in the EU emissions trading system (EU ETS). However, in sectors other than power generation, the transition to auctioning is taking place progressively.

What is EU ETS allowance? ›

The EU ETS follows a “cap-and-trade” approach: the EU sets a cap on how much greenhouse gas pollution can be emitted each year, and companies need to hold European Emission Allowance (EUA) for every tonne of CO2 they emit within one calendar year. They receive or buy these permits – and they can trade them.

What is EU carbon allowance? ›

European Union Allowance (EUA) means the tradable unit under the European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU ETS), giving the holder the right to emit one tonne of carbon dioxide (CO2), or the equivalent amount of two more powerful greenhouse gases, nitrous oxide (N2O) and perfluorocarbons (PFCs).

How does the EUA market work? ›

EUAs are allocated for free or they are auctioned. The trading system offers flexibility to the businesses covered by the scheme as they can decide on taking action or buying EUAs depending on the EUA price. Emitters who have reduction costs lower than the price are encouraged to take action.

What is the EUA market? ›

The EU ETS is a form of Carbon Emissions Trading Scheme whereby total emissions are capped, carbon credits are allocated (freely or by auction) and companies are allowed to trade those carbon credits between themselves.

What is a EUA future? ›

The EUA Futures Contract is a deliverable contract where each Clearing Member with a position open at cessation of trading for a contract month is obliged to make or take delivery of Carbon Emissions Allowances to or from the Union Registry in accordance with the ICE Futures Europe Regulations.

Where does the money from the EU ETS go? ›

The EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) was set up to fight climate change. It aims to do so by making greenhouse gas emitters - such as coal power plants - buy 'emissions allowances', giving them a financial incentive to reduce that pollution. The revenues from these emissions allowances go to the Member States.

What is the major advantage of ETS? ›

ETS allows for linking with other systems, fostering international climate action. ETS policy enables distinct systems to be linked through the mutual recognition of emissions allowances. Linking reduces overall compliance costs, increases market liquidity, promotes market stability, and reduces the risk of leakage.

Is ETS better than carbon tax? ›

Overall, carbon taxes have significant practical advantages over ETSs (especially for developing countries) due to ease of administration, price certainty to promote investment, the potential to raise significant revenues, and coverage of broader emissions sources—but ETSs can have significant political economy ...

Why are energy prices so high 2022? ›

Recent increases in the price cap

Wholesale energy prices increased rapidly from the second half of 2021 onwards. Many consumers were protected, at least initially, by the energy price cap. It was increased by 12% in October 2021, but rising wholesale prices led to a much larger increase of 54% in April 2022.

Is Europe struggling with energy prices? ›

Energy prices have hit all-time highs in 2022, especially as a consequence of Russia's unjustified invasion of Ukraine and its use of gas supplies as a weapon of war. The wholesale price of electricity in the EU's internal market is directly linked to the price of gas – which is mostly imported.

What will happen to energy prices 2022? ›

In light of the recent increase in the cost of wholesale gas, the price suppliers need to charge per unit of energy has gone up significantly. To help protect consumers, the Government has announced the Energy Price Guarantee which comes into effect on 1 October 2022.

How does the EU emissions trading system work? ›

The EU ETS works on a 'cap and trade' basis, so there is a 'cap' or limit set on the total greenhouse gas emissions allowed by all participants covered by the System and this cap is converted into tradable emission allowances.

How did Europe's emissions trading scheme work? ›

The EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) works on the principle of 'cap-and-trade'. It sets an absolute limit or 'cap' on the total amount of certain greenhouse gases that can be emitted each year by the entities covered by the system. This cap is reduced over time so that total emissions fall.

Why did the EU ETS fail? ›

The 1990s saw the first attempt of the EU to introduce a carbon tax. Strong industrial lobbying led to its failure. In 2005, EU succeeded to negotiate and introduce an alternative to a carbon tax known under the European Union Emissions Trading Systems or EU ETS.

What affects the price of the euro? ›

Factors impacting the Euro side of Euro to Dollar:

Countries that are included in the Eurozone (and changes to that list) European Central Bank (ECB) monetary policy. Employment rates, job creation, etc. Budget deficits and national debt levels in Eurozone countries.

What increased the prices of European goods? ›

The population grew so the demand for more goods and services increased. Goods were scarce so sellers could raise prices. And there was an increase flow of gold and silver.

Are prices rising 2022? ›

In 2022, all food prices are predicted to increase between 9.5 and 10.5 percent, food-at-home prices are predicted to increase between 11.0 and 12.0 percent, and food-away-from-home prices are predicted to increase between 7.0 and 8.0 percent.

What are 4 examples of strategies to reduce carbon emissions? ›

There are many ways humankind can pitch in to help reduce carbon emissions:
  • Reduce air travel. ...
  • Make your driving more efficient. ...
  • Plant trees. ...
  • Switch to clean energy. ...
  • Eat less red meat. ...
  • Make your home more energy-efficient.
7 Jun 2021

How can a price on carbon solve the climate problem? ›

Because carbon pricing reduces greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to the lowest cost possible, where that cost includes the monetary amount of efficiency measures a company takes on and the cost of the inconvenience resulting from making do with fewer goods and services that rely on fossil fuels.

What is the main argument against carbon pricing? ›

The problem with carbon pricing is not the idea on paper—it is its application in practice. According to economists, an effective carbon price must be high enough to make polluters pay for the externalities they generate. It must also cover all economy-wide sources of carbon pollution.

Why are carbon credits different prices? ›

The price of carbon offsets varies widely from <$1 per ton to >$50 per ton. The price depends on the type of carbon offset project, the carbon standard under which it was developed, the location of the offset, the co-benefits associated with the project, and the vintage year.

What determines the price of carbon? ›

Some of the key instruments that influence the price of carbon include: A carbon tax, which puts a direct price on GHG emissions with emitters having to pay for every ton of carbon they emit. In theory, higher prices steers businesses and individuals toward less carbon-intensive activities.

Will carbon credits increase in price? ›

Average costs of high-quality carbon credits supply will rise as volume increases. About 40-60% of credits will cost over US$50 per tonne by 2035 as the figure shows.

Do higher gas prices reduce emissions? ›

In fact, an increase in gas prices could be the most effective way to curb our dependence on fossil fuels: According to economists, a 43% price hike, from $3.50 to $5 a gallon, would likely cut gas consumption by about 16%. This would prevent around 175 million tons of CO2 from entering our atmosphere.

Does the EU have a carbon price? ›

Sweden levies the highest carbon tax rate at €117.30 (US $129.89) per ton of carbon emissions, followed by Switzerland and Liechtenstein (€117.27, $129.86) and Norway (€79.12, $87.61). You'll find the lowest carbon tax rates in Poland (€0.07, $0.08), Ukraine (€0.93, $1.03), and Estonia (€2, $2.21).

What is the cheapest way to reduce carbon emissions? ›

Simply saving energy is the most cost-effective way to reduce demand and carbon pollution from power plants. The cheapest, cleanest and most reliable electricity, after all, is the electricity we don't use. The benefits of energy efficiency are vast.

How much has the EU ETS reduced emissions? ›

Greenhouse gas emissions from stationary installations in the EU ETS decreased from 1,530 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (MtCO2e) in 2019 to 1,355MtCO2e in 2020, a reduction of 11.4%. This represents the largest drop in emissions since the ETS began operating in 2005.

What are the main sources of revenue for the EU? ›

  • a proportion of each country's gross national income (GNI) in line with how wealthy they are.
  • customs duties on imports from outside the EU.
  • a small part of the value added tax collected by each EU country.
  • starting in 2021, a contribution based on the amount of non-recycled plastic packaging waste in each country.

What is free allocation of emission allowances? ›

Free allocation is set as a transitional method of allocating allowances in contrast to the default method (auctioning). However, for both phase 3 and 4 of the EU ETS, allowances allocated for free continue to represent more than 40 % of the total number of available allowances.

Do ETS allowances expire? ›

As a long-term measure to improve the functioning of the EU ETS, and unless otherwise decided in the first review of the MSR in 2021, from 2023 onwards the number of allowances held in the reserve will be limited to the auction volume of the previous year. Holdings above that amount will lose their validity.

Are emission allowances commodities? ›

Emission allowances can be seen as commodities or financial products, and existing structures for financial market regulation can then be applied to allowance trading.

How much does it cost to offset 1 tonne of carbon UK? ›

Price per tonne of carbon offset: typically £6.50, can vary based on location in the UK.

Why did EU ETS fail? ›

The 1990s saw the first attempt of the EU to introduce a carbon tax. Strong industrial lobbying led to its failure. In 2005, EU succeeded to negotiate and introduce an alternative to a carbon tax known under the European Union Emissions Trading Systems or EU ETS.

Why is ETS not a carbon tax? ›

There is no cap on emissions in a tax-based system. People are free to emit as much or as little as they like, but if they do emit, they must pay the tax. Unlike an ETS, under a carbon tax it is the price that determines the level of emissions.

What happens with ETS money? ›

The EU Emissions Trading System (ETS) was set up to fight climate change. It aims to do so by making greenhouse gas emitters - such as coal power plants - buy 'emissions allowances', giving them a financial incentive to reduce that pollution. The revenues from these emissions allowances go to the Member States.

Do carbon taxes increase prices? ›

A carbon tax would increase the price of burning fossil fuels and any resulting goods or services.

What is ETS carbon pricing? ›

An ETS is an explicit carbon pricing instrument that limits or caps the allowed amount of GHG emissions and lets market forces disclose the carbon price through emitters trading emissions allowances. • 35 countries (incl. 28 in the EU) and 20 subnational jurisdictions have adopted emissions trading programs.

What is a current problem in the EU? ›

Since the beginning of the eurozone crisis in 2009, the EU has experienced a series of challenges, including a massive influx of refugees, Brexit, the coronavirus pandemic, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Why did UK leave EU ETS? ›

Why did the UK leave the EU Emissions Trading Scheme? Brussels offered the UK Government the possibility of remaining in the EU ETS as a third country after the end of the Brexit transition period. The Government instead decided to create a new UK ETS as part of its strategy to reach net zero by 2050.

Does Elon Musk support carbon tax? ›

Elon Musk says the No. 1 way to decrease carbon dioxide emissions would be to levy a tax on carbon. “My top recommendation, honestly, would be just add a carbon tax,” Musk told Joe Rogan on The Joe Rogan Experience podcast on Thursday. “The economy works great.

How are the allowances allocated in EU ETS? ›

Allocation is done based upon historical data on production and emissions. Less allowances are allocated for free, more allowances are auctioned. The amount of allowances allocated for free decreases towards the end of the period.

How are EU ETS allowances traded? ›

The EU ETS works on the 'cap and trade' principle. Within the cap, companies receive or buy emission allowances which they can trade with one another as needed. After each year a company must surrender enough allowances to cover its emissions.


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