The plans, for the 2008-2012 trading period, saw the Commission reduce allowances for carbon dioxide by energy intensive industries by almost 7% below the emissions proposed by the NAPs and 7% below the 2005 emissions.

The plans concern Germany, Greece, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Slovakia, Sweden and the UK, accounting for 42 % of the allowances allocated in the first trading period of the EU ETS, from 2005 to 2007 cover a total of just over 860 million tonnes of CO2. Germany has the largest proportion with more than 453 million tonnes, followed by the UK with some 246 million tonnes.

Within the same decision the Commission has also decided to limit the use of credits arising from Joint Implementation (JI) and Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) projects in third party countries to supplement the allowance allocation by up to 10%. Furthermore, banking or carry-over of allowances from the first to the second trading period is allowed only if it does not lead to an allocation beyond the total allocation approved by the Commission for the second trading period. Therefore, for each allowance allowed to be banked, an allowance must be deducted from the total quantity issued for the second trading period, the Commission ruled.

Of the ten plans assessed so far, most were accepted with changes required. In addition, the Commission has started infringement procedures against Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Italy and Spain for not submitting their NAPs by the 30 June 2006 deadline.

Environment Commissioner Stavros Dimas said: “The Commission has assessed the plans in a consistent way to ensure equal treatment of Member States and create the necessary scarcity in the European carbon market. The same standards will be applied to the rest of the plans.”

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