May 12, 2006

German C02 emissions below quota, carbon prices dive

COLOGNE, Germany (Reuters) - Carbon dioxide emissions from
top EU polluter Germany fell 26.3 million tonnes short of
levels permitted under the bloc's trading scheme, an EU Web
site said on Friday, sending carbon prices to a one-year low.

To link to the Web site please click on

The European Union's executive body will report on Monday
on the first year of the 25-nation bloc's emissions trading
scheme, which sets limits on how much CO2 high-polluting
industries may emit. It will release 2005 emissions figures for
21 countries.

The Commission had no comment on the data for Germany and
other nations that appeared on the Web site before Monday's
release date. The quotas are part of an EU trading scheme
designed to reduce output of greenhouse gases in line with
Europe's commitment to the Kyoto protocol.

The Web site showed Britain's emissions came in 31.3
million tonnes above its allocation. Spain was 9.1 million
tonnes above quota and Italy was 5.66 million tonnes above

The Czech Republic, Portugal, Belgium and Hungary were all
below quota.

European prices for carbon dioxide emissions fell to their
lowest levels for at least a year. CO2 credits for December
2006 delivery fell 4.05 euros to a low of 8.6 euros a tonne,
before rebounding to 9.25 euros.

The EU trading market sets a cap on total emissions by
industries of CO2, which is widely blamed for global warming.

Companies that have allowances to spare can sell them on
the market, while those that have more emissions than they do
allowances must buy credits or face a fine.

The scheme is the EU's key instrument to meet climate
change commitments under the Kyoto Protocol.