July 25, 2021

“We are going to set up a second carbon market for road transport and heating in Europe”

On Wednesday July 14, the Commission will present a dozen legislative proposals which should enable Europeans to meet their objective of reducing their greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030. On the menu: extension of the market carbon (Emissions Trading System, ETS) in aviation and maritime, creation of a second carbon market for road transport and heating, ban on cars with combustion engines, implementation of a levy at the borders of the European Union (EU) for imported products that do not meet the same environmental standards as their community competitors …

At a time when this interview of World and its partners within Europa (The print, The vanguard, Southgerman newspaper, The Guardian) with Ursula von der Leyen was taken, not all the arbitrations had been made. But the President of the Commission explains her philosophy and justifies the decision taken to create a second carbon market for road transport and heating of buildings. A highly contested proposal, because it will automatically result in an increase in the price of gasoline at the pump and in household electricity bills.

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The industry believes that you are asking too much of it, the NGOs claim that European ambitions are not sufficient to respect the Paris agreement. What do you say to them?

The Green Deal means developing a new growth strategy that takes us towards a low-carbon economy. It is possible: growth and CO emissions2 are not necessarily linked. Since 1990, emissions have fallen by 25%, when the gross domestic product [PIB] has grown by more than 60%.

The Commission proposes to strengthen the existing carbon market for industry. It also plans to create another, for road transport and heating of buildings. Have you made a decision ?

Transport and energy must be affordable for all. But road transport is the only sector whose CO emissions2 have increased in recent years. This trend must be reversed.

The carbon market has proven itself: those who emit CO2 pay rights to pollute, and this encourages them to innovate and invest in clean technologies. Today, Europe uses it for industry and the production of electricity. We are going to set up a second carbon market for road transport and heating systems.

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