* EU carbon allowances recovering from record low last month
* Business body, Poland oppose Commission plan
BRUSSELS Feb 13 Thirty firms and organisations
have written to European policy-makers urging them to vote in
favour next week of a plan to support the European Union's
Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), which has sunk to record lows.
A European Parliament committee votes on Feb. 19 on whether
to back a Commission plan to remove some of a huge surplus of
carbon allowances from the EU ETS.
Opposition to the proposal has been led by heavy industry
and EU member Poland, which is highly dependent on
carbon-intensive coal and argues there is no case for
intervention in the market.
EU business body Business Europe also opposes the
Commission's plan, which is designed to be an emergency fix and
a prelude to deeper reform.
The signatories of the letter seen by Reuters, dated Feb. 14
and addressed to members of the European Parliament, say that
without agreement on the Commission proposal, the price of
carbon allowances will fall further "threatening the long-term
survival of the ETS".
It calls on next week's parliamentary committee and also a
separate committee meeting of member states to back the
Commission proposal urgently "so that the EU ETS as a whole
remains the cornerstone of the EU climate and energy policy".
EU carbon allowances sank below 3 euros last month
to their lowest yet. On Wednesday, they rallied to just above 5
euros as traders speculated that next week's vote would be
The signatories of the new letter include Royal Dutch Shell
, EDF Energy, General Electric, Alstom
, Germany's E.ON, consumer good supplier
Unilever and Statoil.
In an earlier letter from Business Europe, dated Feb. 6,
that organisation opposed the Commission's plan to remove
temporarily some of the glut of permits, saying the EU ETS
should be left to work "according to market principles" and that
its weakness was mainly a result of economic crisis.